Just when you thought you were out of ideas for family trips, the biggest tree in Illinois is in Rockford's backyard.

The "big tree", as my family called it, is located in Mount Morris at the base of Bald Hill on land owned by the Byron Forest Preserve. The idea of something like "the biggest tree in Illinois" being so close, is worth the time to check out in person.

I mean, how often can you tell people "I went to go see the big tree this weekend?" It's kitschy, fun and best of all, free.

There were others who were thinking the same thing. Men, women, young, old. People of all ages from all over congregated just to see the "big tree."

The "big tree" is about a mile off the road. Probably would've been a good idea to bring a stroller for my two-year-old son but I didn't know that before we left.

So we trudged on a beautiful Saturday morning, up and down some hills before finally reaching the "big tree." My young son, surprisingly compliant for his age, managed to walk to the tree on his own.

I talked with Todd Tucker, the man who found the "big tree," and he told me all about his discovery. Tucker told me the base of the "big tree" was covered in brush, after clearing it out, he thought that the tree was in fact, really "big." It was then measured, and Tucker checked the big tree registry to see if it was the biggest in Illinois.

Sure enough, it was. The "big tree" was awarded a certificate and designated "The Biggest Tree in Illinois."

The tree in person is actually quite massive, and I'm not being hyperbolic when saying, it's the biggest tree I have ever seen.

We took some pictures, I chased after my two-year-old son, took a few more looks at the "big tree" and headed home.

My family and I then walked back up the hill. This time I had to carry my two-year-old son back to the car. About that stroller, it sure would've come in handy.

Sweet Lenny is the brand manager of 97ZOK and Operations Manager for Townsquare Media Rockford. Catch him afternoons 3 to 7 on 97ZOK. Follow him on TwitterInstagram and like his page on Facebook.

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