Hiking, waterfalls, caves and more, Illinois may not be the first state to come to mind when planning a camping trip, but it definitely has more to offer than one may think. Speedy Blaze created a list of our top 5 favorite State Parks to take the guessing out of your vacation.
Illinois has some incredible state parks that offer a variety of activities for outdoor enthusiasts. We created a list of our top 5 that we think you would enjoy visiting!
"With all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt. Enjoy what mother nature has to offer and find an inner peace that can only be found with her."
Starved Rock State Park
This park is known for its rich Native American history and has a unique story behind its name. Starved Rock State Park has endless outdoor adventure opportunities including 13 miles of hiking trails, seasonal waterfalls, bird watching and sandstone canyons. The grand Illinois river contains catfish, bullhead, white bass, sauger, crappie, and more! Boats may be launched from the west end of the park and kayaks are available to rent. There are campsites available for $25 a night that have nearby restrooms and shower houses. Dogs are allowed on a leash!
Kankakee River State Park
This park is perfect for canoeists, fishers, and hunters. Enjoy the incredible scenery by taking a canoe or kayak along the river! There is also a boat launch for boats with motors of 10 horsepower or less. The Kankakee river provides great opportunities to catch smallmouth bass, channel catfish, walleye, and Northern Pike.
Mississippi Palisades State Park
Mississippi Palisades State Park offers a variety of activities for hikers, fishers, boaters, and rock climbers. The 15-mile trail system contains trails for both new and experienced hikers. The Mississippi river and its surrounding waterways contain catfish, carp, bluegill, crappie, and bass! There are launching ramps at the river access areas and there are no motor size limits on boats. Experienced rock climbers can bring their own equipment to climb the designated rock formations that include the Sentinel Area, Twin Sisters, and Indian Head.
Castle Rock State Park
Castle Rock State Park has 6 miles of scenic hiking trails that are perfect for birdwatchers, animal enthusiasts, and photographers. There is 1.5 miles of bank fishing area along the rock river where you can catch catfish, bass, walleye, and crappie. There is also a boat ramp available; however, boat size is limited. The only camping at Castle Rock State Park is a primitive camping area that is only accessible by canoe or boat.
Red Hills State Park
Red Hills State Park has beautiful views year-round along with a variety of activities for outdoor enthusiasts. Here you will find hiking trails, equestrian and bike trails, fishing, seasonal hunting, and camping. There are 8 miles of moderate trails going throughout the park that are perfect for birdwatching and discovering Illinois native wildflowers. For horseback riders and bikers, there is a 5-mile trail that is available when soil conditions permit. Along the bank you can fish for largemouth bass, crappie, and bluegill. Red Hills State Park also contains the highest point of land between St. Louis and Cincinnati with breathtaking views.
Be sure to pack a Speedy Blaze Fire Kit with you for your camping adventures! Our recycled wood fire bricks are safe to cook over, smoke-free, all natural, water resistant, and easy to use.