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All Nature & Outdoor Recreation

  • Anderson Lake State Conservation Area

    Once a private duck-hunting club, the 2,247-acre Anderson Lake and adjacent 230-acre Carlson Lake were purchased by the state in 1947 and put under the auspices of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. These lakes are floodplain lakes, receiving overflow from the nearby Illinois River during flood periods. The complex Read more [...]

  • Babb Slough

    All fishing is done on the Illinois River and its backwater. Bluegill, crappie, bullhead and channel catfish are the most frequently caught fish. More experienced anglers can catch largemouth bass.

  • Banner Marsh State Fish & Wildlife Area

    An officially designated “Important Birding Area” (IBA), and purchased in the 1980’s by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, this 4,363-acre complex of freshwater marshes, shallow lakes, and deepwater habitat, boasts over 100 individual bodies of water which offer some of Illinois’ most sought after fishing. During hunting seasons Banner Read more [...]

  • Barto Landing

    Fishermen are in their glory in the Illinois Valley. Northern pike, walleye, sauger and smallmouth bass are among numerous varieties of fish that frequent the Illinois River. Popular among area fishing enthusiasts, Barto Landing offers some of the best year round fishing in Illinois and a free public deep-lagoon launch Read more [...]

  • Bennett’s Terraqueous Garden

    Bennett’s Terraqueous Gardens is a high-quality seep that lies at the base of deeply dissected bluffs and hills bordering the east side of the Illinois River. The seep community is usually saturated by groundwater that emanates at or near the base of a hill comprised of glacial till. Narrow spring Read more [...]

  • Bennett’s Terraqueous Garden

    Bennett’s Terraqueous Gardens is a high-quality seep that lies at the base of deeply dissected bluffs and hills bordering the east side of the Illinois River. The seep community is usually saturated by groundwater that emanates at or near the base of a hill comprised of glacial till. Narrow spring Read more [...]

  • Bernadotte Dam

    Located on Central Illinois’ legendary Spoon River, the little community of Bernadotte is the site of the only dam on the river, a small and quaint structure which was constructed in 1830 for local grain mill use. The dam was revamped during World War II to create a water supply Read more [...]

  • Big Creek Park

    Big Creek Park was the first property purchased by the Canton Park District for park development. A scenic drive winds through the park’s gently rolling, oak-hickory-maple forest, an island amid the adjacent urban thoroughfares. Using your car as a birding blind, you can drive the scenic route that winds through Read more [...]

  • Big Lake

    Many Illinois anglers list Rice Lake as one of the best lakes in the area for its large variety of game fish. Fifteen miles of shoreline provide plenty of space, or bring your boat and try your luck offshore. Paved boat ramp is located at site office.

  • Billsbach Lake

    All fishing is done on the Illinois River and its backwater. Bluegill, crappie, bullhead and channel catfish are the most frequently caught fish. More experienced anglers can catch largemouth bass.

  • Boss Lake

    This area is made up of 911 acres of mostly unclaimed stripmining land with 15 stocked lakes of fishing. Shore access is limited in places where the shorelines drop off suddenly to deep water. Electric trolling motors only.

  • Bowen Lake Park

    Bowen Lake is a borrow pit of 5.8 acres in size and a maximum dept of 64 feet. Largemouth bass, bluegill, and channel fish. Spring and summer are good for bluegill. Water is quite clear and with fair densities of aquatic weeds present. Electric trolling motors only.

  • Buffalo Rock State Park

    So named because (legend has it) the area once served as a “blind canyon” where Indians ran buffalo for capture, this 298-acre park has long been a natural favorite. Much of Buffalo Rock State Park is set high atop sandstone bluff carved by the young Illinois River just after the Read more [...]

  • Camp Wokanda

    Camp Wokanda, acquired from W.D. Boyce Council of the Boy Scouts of America, offers a beautiful 316-acre woodland setting, including a lake for fishing. The camp, with dining hall, sleeping cabins, program buildings and tent camping, offers a variety of naturalist tours, environmental education, and rental options to groups interested Read more [...]

  • Canton Lake

    Located just east of Canton, the 250-acre Canton Lake’s lovely, wooded, 13-mile shoreline has a public campground and boat launch, as well as private residences. Open April 15-October 15, the campground offers full-hookup sites and a restroom/shower facility. A nice sandy beach is conveniently located near the campground. Peoria area Read more [...]

  • Carlson Lake

    Part of Anderson State Fish & Wildlife Area, which is 2,247 acres and is located in west-central Illinois, about 11 miles north of Browning in Fulton County along Route 100.

  • Catlin County Park

    Acquired in 1970 by the LaSalle County Conservation District, the 333-acre Catlin Park (open May-October) is a mix of bluff land oak-hickory forest, chinquapin oak savanna, maple-basswood dominated steep ravines, and tallgrass prairie habitats. Cottonwood, sycamore, and hackberry dominate the bottomland forests. Ash, basswood, and black cherry dot the landscape. Read more [...]

  • Chain Lake

    Sanganois Fish & Wildlife Area is at the junction of the Sangamon and Illinois river. The area lies in southwest Mason County, northwestern Cass County, and one small portion in Schuyler County. Sanganois is one of the few state-owned refuges.

  • Chautauqua National Wildlife Refuge

    Owned and operated by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, this 4,480-acre site contains elements of several habitats: Oak-hickory forest, riparian forest, floodplain shrub, marsh, and open lake. Note the prairie plant display garden at the refuge headquarters. Although known primarily for its waterfowl, Chautauqua National Wildlife Refuge also attracts Read more [...]

  • Chillicothe Recreational Area

    Many acres of beauty for hiking. Fish in one of our three spring fed lakes. RV camping with hook-ups or primitive (no tents). Seasonal/monthly/weekly/daily rates. Dump station (no city sewer). Clean shower house. Sandy beach for swimming & scuba diving.

  • Copperas Creek Lock and Dam

    To promote predictable navigation of the Illinois River, the United States and State of Illinois in the 1870s and 1880s constructed locks and dams at Henry, Copperas Creek, LaGrange, and Kampsville. The Copperas Creek Lock and Dam were completed in 1876. The dam raised the river five feet from Copperas Read more [...]

  • Crane Lake

    Sanganois Fish & Wildlife Area is at the junction of the Sangamon and Illinois river. The area lies in southwest Mason County, northwestern Cass County, and one small portion in Schuyler County. Sanganois is one of the few states owned refuges.

  • DePue Lake

    Since the areas border the Illinois river, boating and fishing are popular. Species of interest to anglers include walleye, sauger, white bass, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, channel catfish, drum, crappie, bullhead and carp.

  • Detweiller Marina

    180 in-water slips ranging from 20′ to 30′, with state-of-the-art electric/water pedestals with 30A twist lock receptacle * 20 in-water beach slips (no power or water available) * 20 dry dock spots available with free launch for season * 3 public launch

  • Detweiller Park

    Peoria Park District’s 740-acre Detweiller Park is a popular multi-use destination for folks who enjoy golfing, soccer, volleyball, hiking, birding, fishing, and boating. Detweiller Drive, which runs through much of the park, features one of the finest, most diverse collections of oaks; and the early spring show of blooming redbuds Read more [...]

  • Dirksen Park

    This 459-acre site is comprised of oak-hickory forest and open shrubland. Running Deer Trail, an extensive hiking/mountain biking/cross country trail, runs through the park, crossing several cobble-bottomed brooks and creeks. In 2003, Dirksen Park along with McNaughton Park, were entered into the Illinois Land and Water Reserve Program, designed to Read more [...]

  • East Peoria Riverfront Greenway

    East Peoria’s Riverfront Greenway project is a 1.8-mile walking/hiking trail along the east bank of the Illinois River. Beginning at EastPort Public Boat Ramp, the trail runs through Cooper Park and terminates at Spindler Marina and Campground. This trail project is congruent with Fon du Lac Park District’s planned second Read more [...]

  • East Peoria Riverfront Park

    This eight-acre park located along the Illinois River in downtown East Peoria features a hiking/biking trail and decorative lighting. It’s a great place for visitors desiring an up-close view of the Illinois River, those who wish to view river nature in an urbanized setting, and individuals who simply wish to Read more [...]

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