Joy H.
Eureka , IL
Joined August 2017
A Little Piece Of Paradise!

If you’re looking for a campsite that transports you away from the usual Midwest fare, this is the place to be! The site we stayed at was beyond perfect. Only a short walk from the parking lot, it was entirely heged in by trees and completely separated from the nearby sites. The real gem however, is the miniature private beach that sits literally on the edge of the campsite! This particular spot had a small bench which boasted a phenomenal view of the sunset over Castle Rock Lake. The lake itself is clean, large, and the sandy shore extends probably a solid quarter mile into the lake if not farther. But let me tell you about the sand. It’s perfect. It is so soft you will forget you’re in Wisconsin and think you’ve been transported to some remote island (especially since this small section of beach is surrounded by trees and separated from the pitiful “lake access points” that belong to the sites on either side of this glorious nook).

The rest of the park is lovely as well and there are several hiking trails to choose from which have an abundance of wildlife and pretty views to see. There is a good selection of both primitive and electrical sites with nearby water stations and bathrooms.

Canyoning

If you’re looking for an intense, gorgeous, canyoning trip, there’s no better place! The canyon itself is beautiful and presents multiple places to camp or you can just explore the freezing cold pools and repel down the drop offs! guide required

Illinois’ desert

A friend and I were looking for somewhere to spend a weekend backpacking that wasn’t a 4+ hour drive away from central IL. This fits the bill but does leave some to be desired. The terrain is an interesting change from most IL hiking since the trails are incredibly sandy while the forest itself is mostly pine. Watch out for cacti along the trail! My only real complaints are the lack of water sources, and the inconsistencies between the trail map and the actual trail. Each trail is marked very clearly with directional sign posts as often as necessary, however, the first night we were hiking in to find BC1 and according to the map we should have passed it in our hike but never saw any sort of campsite at all. We ended up setting up camp off the trail in an unmarked clearing that worked quite well. The next day we moved on to look for site BC7. After hiking much farther than the map indicated, we finally stumbled on BC7. It turned out to be a pretty picturesque little clearing among the pines with an actual fire slab and a signpost marking the entrance trail. Overall it was a good trip, just don’t be fooled by how close things look on the map! Also, the bugs (of all kinds including ticks and mosquitoes) are pretty terrible and I would recommend going either in the early spring or late fall. Not June.

The forest grounds also have an equestrian campgrounds and the trails would be perfect for riding.

Fern Clyffe Camping

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.

Devils Lake

Visited this park with a friend while doing a summer internship in WI. The park allows camping, hiking, swimming, fishing, boating, climbing, riding, etc. We were there mainly for the hiking and were not disappointed! The trails are fun with impressive rock formations and a gorgeous view of the lake from some parts. The lake itself provides a perfect place to relax and cool off after a long day of hiking!

Great experience!

Camped here for a weekend and was not disappointed! There are multiple easy to get to "primitive" campsites for tent camping but all are within an easy walk of the outhouse, water hydrant, and parking lot. There are several easy hikes within a short drive to other areas of the park. The park also has a 6 mile hike-in campsite for backpacking and a lot of electrical hookups for RV camping. The trails are over cliffs and through gorgeous boulders.