Ferne Clyffe State Park is in the Shawnee National Forrest near Goreville, IL., south of Carbondale. There are several limestone bluffs, great for climbing, naturally forested woodlands, cliff caves, and several small waterfalls. There are several campgrounds: modern, primitive, youth groups, backpack or equestrian. Shower facilities are available at some campgrounds. Some campsites can be reserved online at www.reserveamerica.com
There are also equestrian trails, hiking, and fishing.
My brother and I camped here in September on a weekday. We were the only tent campers, so it was nice and peaceful. The sites are large and include a cooking grate. It was easy to find firewood with out having to go very far, becareful there is a good amount of poison ivy. The only trail I hiked was Happy Hollow. A large portion of it is an equestrian trail, so the path was very wide. The veiws on the trail were amazing.
great spot. lots of spots but unfortunately pretty close to each other.
Stayed here for 2 nights. The sites are big and there are hiking trails right from the campground. Sites have electric.
There are a lot of hiking trails and we really enjoyed them all! The tent camping accommodations were less than stellar, simply because of the “outhouses “. There was a ton of wildlife though and it was really neat to listen to all the different species throughout the night. Overall the grounds are quite nice.
Really, this state park is a must for anyone who lives nearby or is driving through. It's just that gorgeous! The campground is wonderful! There are lots of well maintained trails to hike… hikes that include bluffs, caves, creeks, etc. Our favorite is Hawk's Cave Trail. It's an easy hike and the kids explored the caves for hours! Also in this park is a little lake and a gorgeous waterfall. We will be back again next year. One of our favorites!
Good place for a day hike, camping, or some light bouldering. Kind of difficult to wind your way back along unmarked roads to the campgrounds but definitely worth it. The boulders all around are weather beaten, moss covered, and a nice change from rural Illinois.
Each group of campsites has a water source and outhouse nearby.
Peaceful place, love hicking, waterfall, family goes her every year.
Nope, but there is some amazing views not far from your campsite thanks to an amazing drop off. The views of the tree tops in the fall are quite pretty. There's a lot to hike around here with sings detailing different trails in the area. You can even venture down into the valley below. Lots of cool things to climb. It's really a choose your own adventure kid of hike and it's all physically manageable. Sites themselves are well maintained and the grounds are very large. Sites have fire pits.
Ferne Cliffe State Park is situated in the Shawnee National Forest, in the southern part of Illinois. It is not among the best known parks, and its distance from bigger cities makes it more obscure and less frequented than other places I have visited. The campground is small, situated on a limestone bluff which is cut by a small rivulet and some seasonal small waterfalls. The area is really a hidden gem - one has to hike down to discover the natural canyon with the awesome sites. The campground is clean and well maintained. A site of interest nearby is the Garden of the Gods wilderness, which 300 million years ago was the bottom of a sea. The whole area was spared by the glacier activity, yet the weathering of the rocks has given us a sandstone plateau with numerous hoodoos. Close nearby are also Cave in Rock and Land Between the Lakes, both worth seeing.