This COE campground is conveniently located and just a quick off ramp from the Interstate. I stayed here one night as I headed south from Chicago. The one night only ultimately turned out to be a blessing. It seemed that I inadvertently booked a site in the middle of a family reunion. I don’t mind a good party, but when you leave your dog tethered to visit at other campsites and your dog is barking for hours, well, that’s not okay.
I was in site 30, located directly on the water in the Nighthawk campground. Site 29 is very close and the picnic bench is literally 8 feet away from the back of the pad of site 30. The class A rig in the video belonged to my neighbor, so you can see how close the sites were. Don’t expect much in the way of privacy. Otherwise, the site is shaded and fairly level with a nice lake view and direct access.
Unfortunately, I didn’t awake to sounds of nature. Early in the morning the sawing and woodchipping began. To make matters worse it was windy. All the woodchopping and sawdust was flying in the air which required us to close windows and hunker down inside until the park crew finished their work. I understand that maintaining the park is important, but why on a busy camping weekend?
The restrooms were a short walk across the road and up the slope from site 30. I didn’t use the facilities, so can’t speak to their functionality or cleanliness. I like to camp at lakes because I enjoy kayaking and this lake would allow for all kinds of water activities which is a plus.
Also, if you haven’t made a reservation and decide to do a walk up make sure you have cash. A couple was turned away and told to get cash because they don’t take credit cards or checks.
I might stay here again as a layover spot because of its convenient location to the interstate, but it wouldn’t be a destination for me.
Turtle is great. She runs the campground and loves kids.
Campground is on the lake. Has a beach for swimming and you can rent all the fun items like paddle boards, kayaks, and boats.
Some of the sites are a bit close together, would have liked a bit more space but it worked out very well.
Good place to fish.
Shower had hot water!! 😋
My family and I stayed here just passing through and we checked in with the very friendly staff… The campground itself was not the greatest, but okay for just one night passing through! It’s location was great for us, traveling west, being about 45 min. out of St. Louis, MO. The site was pretty muddy, but they had been experiencing lots of rain. Wouldn’t recommend for a vacation, but for one night, passing through, it will be more than suitable!
Most of the sites are large and a good distance from the next one. Shower house is alright. The store/restaurant has been closed for a year or two now because of the Illinois budget. There's a dollar store in Farina and a grocery store in Kinmundy; both towns are less than 10 miles away. The lake is big enough for ski boats but nice for kayaks also. Swim beach is not well maintained due to the budget but also doesn't cost anything since they can't pay anyone to man the gate, but it's not horrible.
Let’s start with the good. The outhouses were clean and it was pretty cheap. Ok,on to all of the not so great. The trails were VERY unkept and there was poison ivy at nearly every step, the entry map shows a beach- there might have been 5 years ago but now absolutely nothing that even resembled a place to swim. If I hadn’t been tricked into thinking it was a decent campground, I might not have been as disappointed but we were looking for a specific type of camping experience and this place failed to meet even the lowest of expectations.
The sites are gravel and some are extremely unlevel. Electric hookups. Pit toilets but the shower house was nice and clean. The trails in this CCC era park are marvelous. We also loved the Lodge for dinner and climbing the water tower. We will definitely be staying here again.
This is our favorite campground in Central/southern illinois. The sites are very nice and most have shade. There is a beach for campers to use, and a really nice playground. Their bathrooms and showerhouse were impeccably clean, and many sites are right next to the lake.
Overall this is a VERY nice campground. There is a camp store, firewood available, and even a pool! The trails around are nice and our family had fun hiking. HOWEVER: Unless you have a restroom in your rig, be prepared to walk up to the showerhouse. The pit toilets that were spread across the campground were in horrendous condition and had wasps, spiders, and other critters hanging out. With 4 kids in tow and a pop-up camper, we made the long treck to the shower house many times in one weekend. If we'd had a heads up, we would have stayed somewhere with more accessible restrooms.
Oh and lots of deer bed down in the grassy areas at night, which was a fun thing to see!
Electric only, no water or sewer hookups. Pit toilets. Nice and clean. People kept cutting through our campsite on their way to the playground, which is whatever, but some people are bothered by that kind of thing. Very laid back place overall.
There’s not a bad campsite here. There are sites with electric, water, and sewer. Several sites are right on Rend Lake. Most sites have concrete picnic tables and fire rings. The bath houses are really nice, they are individual shower houses that are clean and well lit. The grounds are very well maintained. The park was full while we stayed there, but was really quiet. You can tent camp or use a camper.
A little hilly and the gravel sites are close together, but it has full hookup options, as well as just electric. The marina shop also provides kayak and canoe rentals. Little Grassy is a beautiful lake to explore!
I’ve always used this site as a backup if Garden of the Gods is full when I get there. To be honest, this site is prettier, its just further out from the hiking I usually come to the area to do. The sites are well maintained and the area is BEAUTIFUL. The only negative thing I might be able to point out is that there seems to be poison ivy just about everywhere.
Had very nice trails, very clean. Forest is beautiful. We camped at the primitive area spot 11. Spots are pretty dam close to each other. There is camping you can walk off to. We stayed for 1 night at the Turkey Ridge, so we stayed closer to the parking. Was only 1 other group camping on a Wednesday. There are “out houses” close by. Although they were pretty bad my buddy said “storm of flies came shooting out the hole like a tornado.” So I do agree they deserve some slight repercussion for the lack of cleanliness. All and all a great area to camp. A great hidden gem!
First night being in the shawnee national forest and this was one of the first places I stayed this is an excellent campsite..very nice and clean it's also by the garden of the God which if u haven't seen you should def take a trip to see
Couldn't have pick a better spot I definitely recommend red bud campsite.. the sites are spread out so you don't have close neighbors.. and the area is beautiful very quiet and peaceful..
Gary and his family are very polite and very happy to be helpful. Great prices. Burn pit and cooking grill above the pit at every site I visited. Clean Air condition in the bathroom. Showers work great. I stayed here twice, my family and I had a great time and met some really nice people.
Relatively new. Has great potential. Located in Vienna, IL near Shawnee National Forest. It has 3 fish & release ponds. Sites were a bit hilly which stands to reason since it was converted from a golf course in 2016. Some sites are pretty long. It accommodated our 35ft. MH with attached car. Some sites are close together with very little shade. The campground had lots of open sites during our stay (3rd week in Aug), but during our stay 2 other short stay campers came in & they parked them right next to us. -Full hook ups available -Hosts were very friendly & provided insight to area. -Bath house - provided air conditioning. Although new & spacious there were only 4 in the entire campground & the toilet & shower were in same space. Upon arrival only 1 was open near us. Subsequently the 2nd was closed due to a water valve malfunction & wasn’t re-opened during our stay. My husband likes level sites & facilities he could use. He said he wouldn’t come back any time soon.
Yesssss! Tucked into the tall pines of the Shawnee national forest, this park offers a handful of gorgeous sites for campers to enjoy, many that back right up to Lake Glendale. The sites are mostly private and have water hookups as well as electric. A nearby beach is available to enjoy during the summer as well as hiking trails. While this campground is certainly off the beaten path it is perfect for those that want to get away and enjoy some quiet time. No reservations though so you’ll want to get there ahead of time to ensure yourself a spot If you enjoy a very
Our favorite in all of Illinois!! Tucked into the tall pines of the Shawnee national forest, this park offers a handful of gorgeous sites for campers to enjoy, many that back right up to Lake Glendale. The sites are mostly private and have water hookups as well as electric. A nearby beach is available to enjoy during the summer as well as hiking trails. While this campground is certainly off the beaten path it is perfect for those that want to get away and enjoy some quiet time. No reservations though so you’ll want to get there ahead of time to ensure yourself a spot If you enjoy a very
This campground is an absolute gem and is by far our favorite in Illinois.Tucked into the tall pines of the Shawnee national forest, this park offers a handful of gorgeous sites for campers to enjoy, many that back right up to Lake Glendale. The sites are mostly private and have water hookups as well as electric. A nearby beach is available to enjoy during the summer as well as hiking trails. While this campground is certainly off the beaten path it is perfect for those that want to get away and enjoy some quiet time. No reservations though so you’ll want to get there ahead of time to ensure yourself a spot If you enjoy a very