BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS: Chicago beaches take beating from winter storm
Parts of the Lakefront Trail were closed and blockades were put up after high waves damaged the trail with piles of asphalt lining the trail.
Late Monday morning, the Chicago Park District announced the trail has reopened, but that those who use it should be aware that asphalt is missing south of Fullerton and between Ohio and Oak streets.
Wind gusts reportedly topped 55 miles per hour, with waves towering 20 feet tall flooding paths and streets around the lakefront.
The storm eroded the ground near sidewalks as the waves made their way above retaining walls.
"It is intense. The hydraulic force of the water is incredible," biker Lincoln Schatz said.
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Miles of trails across the shoreline are still covered with mountains of sand.
"There is three-four feet of sand up there on the path," Schatz said. "The path is gone."
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The record-high lake levels coupled with high winds, snow and rain left no area immune from damage. Piles of broken pieces of asphalt lined the running trail in the North Side, while windows of homes along the South Shore now boarded up.
Video showed most of Elliott Park in Evanston was underwater after heavy rains driven by strong wind gusts flooded the area.
Chicago Park District crews did not waste time getting to work-pushing around piles of sand, clearing debris and inspecting eroded areas for safety. As for the damaged sections of the path, it's unclear if and when they will be fully repaired.
United States Army Corps of Engineers officials with the Chicago Shoreline Projection Project said they've asked for a reevaluation study of the area to see what more can be done to better protect the lakefront. But even if that request is granted, they say it would need more funding and years to complete.