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North Peoria, ILLINOIS

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Campground with service on a lake

Nice big campground on a lake!! Flat sites and reasonable price.

Needs a little sprucing up

This is a pretty area on the Evergreen Lake with mature trees and open spaces. The area I camped in had large spaces between the sites which was nice, but there was no foliage to provide privacy or sound buffering. I could hear one campers entire angry phone conversation. On the plus side, the stars were amazing.

The pad at site 38 was gravel and uneven with electric only. Good electric though. There was a picnic bench and a fire pit, but the bench had been pulled over the pit which was odd. The dump station was also strangely located. It was down the road from the park. The bathrooms have seen better days and so have the sites I viewed. It’s sad because this park looks like it was a real beauty in it’s prime.

Not a lot of amenities.

Large sites on Illinois River. FHU. Expensive. No laundry, store, or gas. They do sell firewood, pickup your trash, and have two showers available.

Large RV Park

FHU, shower house, no laundry but there are small towns close by that have stores, gas, and laundry facilities. On Saturday night they offer classic country music free. Special events throughout the summer. Two fishing ponds. No license required. Catch and keep. Nice big areas with playgrounds for kids. Bouchée ball courts.

Inexpensive

Quiet but tight spots. Along the Illinois River. Includes showers and laundry house.

Great staff, awful bathrooms

 I’d like to start by saying the staff is wonderful. They’re very friendly and kind. 

However,  The bathrooms could really benefit by some simple tuneups. In order to run the shower, one must hold down a rusty slimy chain. The floors are also very porous, which would make them very difficult to clean (hence the filthy floors) 

Also, there were some other campers playing loud music which was annoying. It was not bad enough for us to make a fuss (we only stayed one night), so I have no idea how that might have been handled by staff had the need arisen.

Nice sites, amenities ???

Nice size sites, with plenty of shade. Fishing, hiking, etc. They have a beach with fee access. The shower house could use a fresh coat of paint, bathrooms could use a thorough cleaning. They use to have camp hosts, no longer do.

Group camping in open area with prickly pear

This is a group only campground. You also need to reserve this- it’s not one you just show up to. There is a big open field with 2 covered picnic table areas. Each one has 2 tables in it. A standout feature might be the 2 huge fit pits. They each have a nice wood ring that is perfect to sit on for some evening storytelling. One set of vault toilets is off to the side. 

One drawback is the amount of prickly pear cacti. It is everywhere! There are some free areas to set up a tent but definitely watch where you walk. This camp is also in a clearing so there’s no shade except by the edges. 

Another option is Pine Campground which is just down the road. There are also individual back country sites that you can backpack to. 

The natural area has some great hiking (the ranger recommends the green trail). There is also hunting and fishing here. A horse campground around the bend means you might encounter some on the trails. 

This is a nice area set aside from all other campers but it’s in the open and those cacti are a pain.

Sandy forested equestrian camping

This is the campground for horses and their riders. Tie up posts are in each campsite along with picnic tables. The campground is one loop so the inner ring of sites are almost like a group site setup. The outer ring sites are more private and up against the woods. A set of vault toilets is commonly located. Along with garbage cans there are multiple spots to pile manure. There were a couple sites occupied the first night but it emptied out on Saturday. 

Most trails in this natural area are accessible to horses. Trails head out from camp. The longest being almost 15 miles. Hiking and hunting also happen here so keep an eye open on the trails. If you have an energetic horse that you want to work hard, head into the yellow loop. The ranger said it tires everyone because it’s steep hills of sand. 

Across the road is a spot for day use riders to park their trailers. There were a bunch parked when we passed it. 

This is a hidden gem and worth giving a chance.

Great find for area

Clean bathrooms. Secluded from road, quiet, in forest. Friendly staff.

Ranger review of Banner and Oak Horizon hat at Pine Campground

Campground Review: 

This is a hidden gem! We camped immersed in a pine forest. Can you smell that fragrance? This is a nice size campground that feels larger because so few are camping here this weekend. 

Our site is up against the woods giving us a sense of being on our own. Vault toilets are clean and in a couple locations. We have two trees perfect for the hammock and yet enough sun to use the solar panels. 

One odd point is that we couldn’t find a way to pay. During office hours, you pay at the ranger’s place just down the road. We arrived late but he came around the next morning to check in everyone. He pointed out the 2 water pumps that work and we had a nice chat. 

The ranger directed us to hike the green trail. It touches on all the various ecosystems that are found here. It was a great hike and not that difficult at all. It just a short drive away. He also said to watch out for prickly pear as you roam the natural area. 

Another camper has been alternating camping here with backpacking to more remote spots. It’s good to have options. 

Backpacking, hiking, fishing, horses and hunting can all be done in this large nature area. 

Product Review: 

As a Dyrt Ranger I sometimes get products to evaluate. This trip I tested out the Horizon hat by Banner and Oak

The Freedom to Explore hat has material over the entire head (not mesh like many other hats of this type). This caught my eye since my lack of hair requires sun protection. I was perfectly happy with this hat. The material is soft and it adjusted to fit perfectly. It was a comfort to know my head was protected. 

A side job I asked of it was swatting away all the spiderwebs. We were the first on the trail and they were everywhere! Banner and Oak to the rescue! Their hat slipped on and off easily as I quickly swung it into action.

(Side comment: the Banner and Oak carabiner was great at being a second attachment for my dog’s leash. She broke the metal on her last harness and it’s nice having some reassurance) 

I’m recommending this Banner and Oak hat! It works beautifully and carries a message to encourage everyone to find the courage to get outside.

Family Friendly

Lots of planned activity and music entertainment. Bathrooms are not clean and It’s very buggy.

I love a nice shady camp site

We had the shade and the sites had nice people and we were near a stream, but there was a ton of poison ivy in the uncut beside the tent. Even ivy in the utility box for water and electricity.

Tight Squeeze!

Stayed here in early June during a trip to Starved Rock, which is a quick 10-15 minute drive. Camp hosts are very nice and the the grounds well maintained. I stayed on site 5 which is a full hookup but best for a small camper. I have a 14 foot travel trailer and it just fit with my SUV in front. The spots are very tight and you have very little room between you and your neighbor. With all the rain this year, many sites flooded during a storm while we camped and they had to be moved to other areas that were not actual sites so it was a bit crazy…hosts did a great job taking care of everyone effected. Campground has a cute dog park and a beautiful stream that runs through it. I would stay here again!!

Camp Ground for Fishermen

Large body of water. Not really clean enough to enjoy swimming. Campsites are a little cramped. We have stayed here a few times with our camping club.

There is a boat club near by. Gibson City has a great drive in movie theater and German Restrurant. Gibson is about 20 minutes from the camp ground.

Only electric hook ups.

Nice family place

Nice place no alcohol. 'Lake' has had a lot of algae over the last couple years

Overall good

Awesome pine forest, not much traffic and great for primitive camping/bushcrafting…very few sources of water

Decent

Friendly staff. Only stayed one night. Sites were decent sized. Bathrooms needed refurbished But had good hot water The grass had just been cut and the bugs were awful. Suggest they keep grass cut more often.

Nice and quiet.

We were in a tent spot with power, on a somewhat level pad, with a great view of the lake. There were few people there. As with most municipal parks (my experience), facilities are mediocre. It was long walk to the bathroom, and the showers were hot, but not very private. Personnel were very friendly. It was raining, so didn't get to take advantage of all they have to offer. City wifi was free, reliable, but slow from our site.

Small but nice

Very small CG with maybe 10-15 sites. All electric hookup, Has dump station a little down the road.
Slough just behind you from the river, many boaters and blinds set up. You have to drive a bit to find the trails but they are nice trails. CG is right off the main road so you do hear a lot of traffic and I would be worried with small children moving around there. There are vault toilets, no sinks or showers.
There is a sportsman’s club around the area so you’ll hear a lot of gun shots, it’s public hunting land so watch what time of year you go out for hiking or boating. We hunt small game there and I know locals hunt deer and duck.

Primitive Camping at its Best!

Great little spot for some primitive camping and/or backpacking trip training.

Great trails within this park and tons of unique terrain for IL!

Nice quite, owners working on sprucing it up.

Full hookups each site. On Illinois river. Has cabins for rent, showers. Check it out on google.

Off the path

Has sections of niceness hiking and kayaking

Illinois Berkshire Feel

This is an amazing full service type private campground. Everything you could want is here: there is a creek with tent sites along it, there are RV sites with full hookups, there are cute little cabins, and there are even yurts! There is a general store where you check in, and if you get there after it closes, they leave directions on the door for reserved sites and info on how to get a non reserved site. There is a nice pavilion, a game room/club house, basketball court, fishing pond, firewood for sale, and a few short trails. I felt like I was in the Berkshires instead of northern Illinois since most of the buildings down by the creek were whitewashed with green trim. Even though sites are close together, it still felt a bit private at the tent only sites on the creek. Up top it was more open with kids running around and playing everywhere. The rates are somewhat pricey ($28 for primitive sites), but include showers in the super clean (looks brand new!) bath house.

Great for families or just a quiet getaway!

We stayed here last year and will likely stay there again this year when we are back in Illinois. The park has two sides, one side closer to the stage. We haven’t been there when they have shows, so I can’t speak to what that is like. When we were there it was lovely. There is plenty of shade, sites are large enough for our Class A and they are pet friendly.

Very clean and family oriented.

My family camped here in a RV for 21 years till my step dad passed away. My friends and I camp here in a tent occasionally. I highly recommend this campground.

Very peaceful camping,fishing, and kayaking

NNice lake for fishing and kayaking. Excellent restaurant on site also

the great outdoors

right near the vermillion river which offers a white water rafting trip in the early season, just about 5 miles from starved rock.

Smaller campground on Illinois River, IL

Stayed with daughter in tent site right on shore of Illinois River. Has marina adjacent, showers, host, and laundry. Inexpensive tent sites with access for fishing, paddling, wildlife and sunset viewing.

Not a soul in sight

Trails are long and well maintained. All sand! this is my go to state forest since it’s so close to my home. campgrounds are clean and it’s never super busy!