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IDNR campsite reservations for the upcoming 2007 camping season open today          Send a link to a friend

[JAN. 2, 2006]  SPRINGFIELD -- Reservations for the 2007 camping season for Illinois Department of Natural Resources campsites, cabins, group campsites and picnic shelters may be made by mail beginning Jan. 2 and in person or over the phone beginning Feb. 1.

"Campgrounds at our state parks, recreation areas, and state fish and wildlife areas are popular destinations for families, hikers, hunters and anglers," said Sam Flood, acting director of the Department of Natural Resources. "By taking reservations at the start of the new year, we ensure there is a campsite waiting for our visitors when they're ready for a vacation or a few days in the outdoors."

Reservations can be made by mail only beginning Jan. 2. Beginning Feb. 1, telephone and in-person reservations can be made using Visa and MasterCard at the following sites: Chain O'Lakes, Fox Ridge, Jim Edgar Panther Creek, Pere Marquette, Ramsey Lake, Rock Cut, Shabbona and Sangchris Lake. In-person reservations will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations are not accepted via electronic mail at any site.

A daily lottery will be conducted for mail-in reservations. Up to six mail-in reservations per envelope, per person will be accepted for campsites or shelters. Camping groups may mail more than six reservations per envelope as long as no more than six are for one individual.

In addition to regular camping fees and utility fees payable upon arrival at the site, regular campsites and group campsites require a $5 reservation fee per site at the time the reservation is made. All sites taking reservations will require the first night's camping and utility fee plus a $5 reservation fee.

Payment of the first night's camping and utility fees guarantees that the reservation will be held until 3 p.m. the following day. Shelter reservation fees are $25. Once a reservation is confirmed, the reservation fee is nonrefundable unless the Department of Natural Resources closes an area due to storm damage or other reasons.

Campsites can be reserved for a maximum of 14 nights per 30-day period, and reservations must be made at least seven days before the campsite is needed. Reserved campsites will be held until 3 p.m. the following day, after which time the site will be offered to other campers on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations for the Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day weekends require a minimum three-day reservation.

Campsite reservations will be available at the following state parks:

  • Apple River Canyon, 8763 E. Canyon Road, Apple River, IL 61001 (youth group camping only

  • Argyle Lake, 640 Argyle Road, Colchester, IL 62326

  • Beaver Dam, 14548 Beaver Dam Lane, Plainview, IL 62685 (cabins and youth group camping only)

  • Big River, R.R. 1, Box 118, Keithsburg, IL 61442

  • Chain O'Lakes, 8916 Wilmot Road, Spring Grove, IL 60081

  • Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, R.R. 1, Box 4, DeWitt, IL 61735

  • Delabar State Park, R.R. 2, Box 27, Oquawka, IL 61469

  • Eagle Creek, P.O. Box 16, Findlay, IL 62534

  • Eldon Hazlet, 20100 Hazlet Park Road, Carlyle, IL 62231

  • Fox Ridge, 18175 State Park Road, Charleston, IL 61920

  • Hidden Springs, R.R. 1, Box 200, Strasburg, IL 62465

  • Illini, 2660 East 2350th Road, Marseilles, IL 61341

  • Illinois Beach, Lake Front, Zion, IL 60099

  • Jim Edgar Panther Creek, 10149 County Highway 11, Chandlerville, IL 62627 (cabins and group camp only)

  • Kankakee River State Park, P.O. Box 37, Bourbonnais, IL 60914

  • Kickapoo, 10906 Kickapoo Park Road, Oakwood, IL 61858

  • Lake Le-Aqua-Na, 8542 North Lake Road, Lena, IL 61048

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  • Moraine View, R.R. 2, Box 110, LeRoy, IL 61752

  • Pere Marquette, P.O. Box 158, Grafton, IL 62037

  • Ramsey Lake, P.O. Box 97, Ramsey, IL 62080

  • Rock Cut, 7318 Harlem Road, Loves Park, IL 61111

  • Sam Dale, R.R. 1, Box 101 Johnsonville, IL 62850

  • Sangchris Lake, 9898 Cascade Road, Rochester, IL 62563

  • Shabbona Lake, 4201 Shabbona Grove Road, Shabbona, IL 60550

  • Starved Rock, P.O. Box 509, Utica, IL 61373

  • Trail of Tears, 3240 State Forest Road, Jonesboro, IL 62952 (Reservations not accepted until April 16.)

  • Walnut Point, 2331 East County Road, 370 N., Oakland, IL 61943

  • Weldon Springs, 1159 500 N., R.R. 2, Box 87, Clinton, IL 61727

  • Wolf Creek, R.R. 1, Box 99, Windsor, IL 61957

Shelter reservations will be available at the following sites:

  • Northwest Illinois -- Apple River Canyon, Argyle Lake State Park, Big River State Forest, Castle Rock State Park, Delabar State Park, Franklin Creek State Natural Area, Hennepin Canal Parkway State Park, Illini State Park, Jubilee College State Park, Lake Le-Aqua-Na State Park, Mississippi Palisades State Park, Morrison-Rockwood State Park, Prophetstown State Park, Rock Cut State Park, Shabbona Lake State Park and White Pines Forest State Park.

  • Northeast Illinois -- Buffalo Rock State Park, Chain O'Lakes State Park, Gebhard Woods State Park, Goose Lake Prairie State Natural Area, Kankakee River State Park, Moraine Hill State Park, Silver Springs State Park and William W. Powers Conservation Area.

  • East-central Illinois -- Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, Eagle Creek State Park, Fox Ridge State Park, Hidden Springs State Forest, Kickapoo State Park, Lincoln Trail Homestead State Park, Middle Fork State Fish and Wildlife Area, Moraine View State Park, Spitler Woods State Natural Area, Walnut Point State Park, Weldon Springs State Park, and Wolf Creek State Park.

  • West-central Illinois -- Beaver Dam State Park, Coffeen Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area, Eldon Hazlet State Park, Frank Holten State Park, Horseshoe Lake State Park in Madison County, Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Area, Pere Marquette State Park, Randolph County Conservation Area, Sand Ridge State Forest, Sangchris Lake State Park, Washington County Conservation Area, and Weinberg-King State Park.

  • Southern Illinois -- Dixon Springs, Ferne Clyffe State Park, Fort Massac State Park, Giant City State Park, Horseshoe Lake Conservation Area in Alexander County, Lake Murphysboro State Park, Ramsey Lake State Park, Red Hills State Park, Sam Dale State Park, Sam Parr State Park, Stephen A. Forbes State Park, Trail of Tears State Forest and Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park.

The Department of Natural Resources also has openings for campground hosts at many state-run campgrounds. Hosts are paid $1 per day and receive free camping for the length of their stay. Hosts are expected to check campers in and out and help answer general questions from campers. For more information on the host program, call Barb Foster at 217-785-8129.

[Illinois Department of Natural Resources news release]

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