One of the best places in Illinois to witness the dramatic transformation of summer to fall is located in the northwestern corner of the state on the Mississippi River in Carroll County. Mississippi Palisades State Park in Savanna provides beautiful views of fall foliage from atop the bluffs of the river. In general, the peak time for viewing is in the second week of October. The park is located near the confluence of the Mississippi and Apple rivers. Fleeting fall: Catch nature’s season finale while it lasts – Chronicle Media (chronicleillinois.com) 9 Illinois State Parks Boasting Vibrant Fall Colors – My Bucket Journals
Mississippi Palisades State Park includes some of the most gorgeous rock formations in the Midwest. Incredible winding and steep drives offer breathtaking views of the Mississippi River and Iowa. The historic twin sisters, a pair of humanoid figures on the bluff tops, offer spectacular views of the Mississippi River. The 2,500-acre state park is rich in American Indian history and can be enjoyed as a fun day trip or weekend getaway. Off the Beaten Path | Mississippi Palisades State Park – Visit NW Illinois (visitnorthwestillinois.com)
Mississippi Palisades State Park is a popular place for campers and motorhomes, and the facility is also dog friendly. The park offers 241 campsites and electrical hookups, with showers and flushing toilets available from May through October. The park is full of wildlife and offers prime bird watching. Over 15 miles of trails and five scenic overlooks are included. Off the Beaten Path | Mississippi Palisades State Park – Visit NW Illinois (visitnorthwestillinois.com)
Mississippi Palisades also offers fishing, boating, hunting, picnicking, and rock climbing. There are 11 different trails in all, ranging in length from 0.4 to 1.7 miles apiece. Illinois Route 84 runs through the property. Mississippi Palisades State Park (illinois.gov) Activities at Mississippi Palisades SP (illinois.gov)
While fall foliage can be observed on the bluffs, it is also prevalent on the hiking trails. Pine Trail includes majestic views of fall foliage, Sentinel Trail has caves that have been carved into the side of the bluffs, and Sunset Trail offers Lookout Point. The Ultimate Hiking Guide to Mississippi-Palisades State Park — Toone’s Travels (chris-toone.com)
There is no admission fee to the park, and there are parking areas throughout the property. Grills, gazebos, picnic areas, and restrooms can also be found at a number of stops. There are areas of very steep terrain, including ascending and descending, and there are also areas of level ground.