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Illinois Beach State Park Camping

Getting away for a weekend at Lake Michigan isn’t as easy as it probably should be. The Illinois Beach State Park provides visitors an opportunity to experience six and a half miles of shoreline for families to camp, play and swim. We spoke with Bob from Illinois Beach State Park, who filled us in on his favorite campsite in the park, what to do – and when to come trout fishing. Listen to our full interview here:

Illinois Beach State Park Camping

Camp Illinois: I’m talking with Bob today from Illinois Beach State Park in Illinois. How’s it going this morning, Bob?

Bob: It’s great.

CI: So, let’s just start with how long Illinois Beach State Park has been there and how it got its start.


Bob: I don’t have the date. The Park has been here since the ’50s. The Park was originally started as an area that they wanted to save along the lakeshore that most of Lake Michigan had been developed, and they wanted to preserve an area to show what the lakeshore was like before development.

CI: Okay, and I can see from a couple images here on your website, it looks pristine. It looks gorgeous.

Bob: Thanks.

CI: And what are the most popular activities at the park?

Photo courtesy of David Narens
Photo courtesy of David Narens

Bob: The most popular activity of course is swimming, where you’ve got six and a half miles of lakeshore for swimming. We also have picnicking and camping. Right now we just opened trout fishing again. We stock the pond with trout twice a year: once we open, the first Saturday in April, and then again the third Saturday in October for trout fishing.

CI: Okay. And what kind of accommodations do you offer for camping?

Bob: All of our sites have electricity. Come with a picnic table and a fire ring. There are shower buildings and flush toilets. Water spigots are disbursed throughout the campground. About every 20 feet, there’s a water spigot. You can fill your tanks. You’re just not allowed to stay hooked up. There’s a dump station. And that’s about it.

CI: Okay, perfect. Two more questions for you. If you could spend just one hour in Illinois Beach State Park, how would you spend your time, Bob?

Photo courtesy of Vikas C Srivastava
Photo courtesy of Vikas C Srivastava

Bob: Well, depending on the season. In the summer, of course I’d be down at the beach. In the fall, I kind of like hiking the trails with the colors. The Nature Preserve. There’s a lot of different plant species. I enjoy that, or, in the summer, go for a bike ride also.

CI: Okay. And if you could spend just one night in Illinois Beach State Park, which specific campsite would you choose and why?

Bob: My favorite site, I think, is 3684. It’s along the beach and it’s a nice site.

CI: Okay, perfect. Well, thanks so much for taking some time out of your morning, Bob, to chat with us about Illinois Beach State Park in Illinois.

Visit the Illinois Beach State Park Website

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