The cross country and track & field teams have access to some of the best training in the entire Chicago area with outstanding facilities and a fortunate location to numerous trails, forest preserves, and parks that are within a short run from campus.


Helwig Recreation Center  

The Helwig Recreation Center boasts some of the most dynamic practice, strength and conditioning, athletic training and rehabilitation, and recreation spaces in the nation.  Just some of the amenities of the facility include a two-lane 200 meter Mondo-surface track, vertical and horizontal jump pits, throwing cage and curtain, 35 piece cardio area, and 2 weight rooms.


River Park Track

River Park is home to the Viking men’s and women’s track and field teams.  In the spring of 2008, the facility played host to the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) Track and Field Championships.

Set on the banks of the North Branch of the Chicago River and just two blocks from campus, the park nevertheless seems miles away from the urban environment that surrounds it.  River Park features:

· An NCAA-standard, rubberized eight-lane, 400 meter track

· Set-up for all NCAA track and field events including the steeplechase


River/Legion Park

A 1.5 mile long park system that runs adjacent to campus and straddles the Chicago River.  The parks provide a great training location for workouts and connect with the North Shore Channel Trail that extends north to Evanston (pictured...8 miles in length).


LaBagh Woods  

One of the best off road running sites in Chicago, the trails in LaBagh Woods straddle the Chicago River providing Viking distance runners with an ideal training area with 10+ miles of dirt trails!   Just a 10 minute warm-up run from campus through Eugene Field and Gompers Parks, North Park runners have easy access to this incredible training venue. 


Horner Park

Located one mile south of campus through the stately Ravenswood Manor neighborhood, this beautiful Chicago park has a perimeter of 1.25 miles making it an ideal place for tempo runs, fartleks, interval workouts, and hill circuits.  This popular Chicago park is also home to many local high school cross country meets


Skokie Line Trail

Another favorite of the North Park distance runners, the two spurs of the Skokie Line Trail provide 8 miles of soft surface and paved trail running.  The trail is located 1.5 miles west of campus extending to the north fromLaBagh Woods.  


Chicago Lakefront Trail

The Chicago Lakefront is only 3 miles to the east of campus and can be easily accessed through quiet, residential neighborhoods.  The 18 mile mixed use trail has a soft running shoulder and provides runners with an amazing view of Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline. 


Montrose Harbor

The home course for the Viking cross country teams and the site of the 2011 College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) Cross Country Championships.  The challenging course offers runners  incredible views of the Chicago skyline in a beautiful, urban park setting.  Cricket Hill also provides the North Park distance runners with a great  training locale for hill workouts.


North Branch Trail

3.5 miles northwest of campus, the North Branch Trail provides over 20 miles of paved  trail running with a soft shoulder.  The trail winds through quiet and scenic forests, making the sights and sounds of the city quickly fade away.


Des Plaines River Trail

A 15 minute van ride to the west allows the Viking runners to access 33 miles of soft surface trail running, perfect for distance runs in a quiet, natural setting.