Located at the eastern gateway to the historic city of Galena, the 40-acre Horseshoe Mound offers the public opportunities to enjoy one of the most scenic properties in all of northern Illinois.
In 2014, JDCF opened Horseshoe Mound Preserve featuring a central gathering area, viewing scopes, and scenic outlooks with views across three states. Hiking trails extend throughout the property and offer panoramic views of the city of Galena, distant views of Bellevue and Dubuque in Iowa, the Mississippi River, and several other geological mounds in Iowa and Wisconsin. The purchase of this landmark site was made possible by the generous support of the local community, the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
In 2019, JDCF received a public amenities grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation to upgrade the Dorte Breckenridge Children’s Adventure. Previously, the time-traveling adventure of twins Neto and Natalia was printed out on a series of scrolls hidden in plastic tubes along the trails at the mound. Inevitably, one or more scrolls would be misplaced or succumb to the weather, making the adventure impossible to complete. To remedy this, the Friends of Horseshoe Mound got to work on ideas for making the adventure easier to follow. Their solution? With the help of the story’s author, Erin Keyser, five riddles were written to be used as clues, etched into a series of stones, to guide explores through the adventure. An accompanying booklet, available at the kiosk and at various points along the trail, tells the twin’s story, who learn about the history, geology, and natural wonders of Galena and the Driftless Area during their time travels. This inspires them to take on conservation practices once they return home. We thank our Premier Partner, Tukaiz, for producing the booklets. Looking for an adventure? Head up to Horseshoe Mound today! Looking to save some paper? The adventure is available here: HSM Children’s Adventure.