Natural areas are open from 6am to 11pm daily.
The North Pond natural area, located within Lincoln Park, is 12.5 acres of native aquatic and upland prairie habitat. Originally, this site was a scrub oak sand dune, which eventually became a dumping ground before it was converted into the natural area it is today. Due to its proximity to Lake Michigan, the coastline of which is a well-traveled flyway for migratory wildlife, North Pond was the location where the City of Chicago and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service jointly signed an Urban Conservation Treaty for Migratory Birds in 2000. In addition to migratory birds, local mammals, amphibians, reptiles and insects are attracted to and supported by the native habitat at North Pond Natural Area.
The natural area has benefited greatly from the dedication and hard work of community volunteers, hosted in partnership with The Lincoln Park Conservancy, who collect and scatter native seed, plant native species, pick up trash, monitor vegetation and birds, and remove invasive species. Learn more about these kinds of volunteer opportunities by visiting our Community Stewardship Program page.