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Batavia, Illinois

Obscura Society IL: Fermilab and Red Gate Woods

A tour and hike through Chicago's major contributions to particle physics.

On this tour, get up close to a particle accelerator, pay respects to the world's first nuclear reactor, and maybe catch a glimpse of a bison or two as we explore the places behind seven decades of Chicago contributions to particle physics. We'll begin the day with a two-hour tour of FermiLab, where we'll get up close views of the latest experiments in subjects such as dark matter, dark energy, and anti-matter, as well as the Tevatron, the world's second-largest particle accelerator. Then we'll take a walk deep into the forests of Red Gate Woods to the site where Enrico Fermi's Chicago Pile 1, the world's first nuclear reactor, is buried, far from it's origins underneath the University of Chicago's Stagg Field.

Adventure Notes

Visitors may enter Fermilab through any of the three entrances: Pine Street or Wilson Street in Batavia, Illinois, or the Batavia Road entrance in Warrenville, Illin

A valid photo ID is required to enter the Fermilab site, and you must also tell the security officer the purpose for your visit. All U.S. state-issued IDs are accepted at the security checkpoints.

 Is there an age limit? Yes, ten years and old.

What are my transport/parking options getting to the the Fermilab and Red Gate Woods? Fermi Lab is located 45 miles west of Chicago and Red Gate Woods is an estimated 40 minutes from Fermi Lab. Guests must provide own transportation and plan accordingly. Link to the Fermilab page with all your answers.

What happens if it rains? Light rain is okay, downpour or snow we make a day of game call.

How long is the walk in Red Gates Woods? 1.5 miles. Wear good walking shoes and weather appropriate clothing.

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