Camping in Illinois in March? - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-18-2018, 10:18 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2010 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe
Wisconsin
Posts: 171
Camping in Illinois in March?

We have some time off next weekend (March 23) and thought about getting a jump on getting the Casita out. Is it too early to camp in mid Illinois along the Mississippi river area? And will we have trouble finding campgrounds open. Never been that direction to camp so have no idea.
__________________

Vtec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 10:39 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2013Escape 21
Iowa
Posts: 258
I’m not sure about Illinois state parks along the big river. I can tell you that the popular Shelbyville area which is managed by the Corps is not open until mid April however further south is Rend Lake also a Corps area, opens on the 20th. Cops be coolish with some trees budding up and some green showing up but still pretty early. Northward bird migration will be happening in that area by next weekend but will not be in full swing for many species. Waterfowl should be good though. Illinois is a long State. Two lane state roads do traverse many interesting, historical and nostalgic areas. We usually camp it in the fall but have been in Southern Illinois in mid April and the redbuds will knock your socks off.
Iowa Dave
__________________

Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 10:43 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Name: Steve
Trailer: Casita 17 ft DLX SD
NW Wisconsin
Posts: 3,224
We have camped at Starved Rock SP near Utica Illinois during the months of January , February, and March.
The park has several handicapped sites with water and electric available year round. . If the sites are not reserved they are open to the public . Their is also a heated bathroom with hot showers that is open year round and close to the handicap sites
It is a beautiful park with miles of trails . Park personal patrol the park for safety There is a good pizza place a few miles south of the park .
We are big fans of Illinois State Parks and unlike Wisconsin you don't have to buy a $500.00 park sticker.
We are looking at returning to Dixon Springs SP in Southern Illinois
this spring . The park is small and nothing special but the park staff is the best we've found in the 30 some states we have visited
, except maybe for Oregon.
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 11:16 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2013Escape 21
Iowa
Posts: 258
Park Stickers

We camp throughout the United States and into Canada each year with our Escape Travel Trailer. Park entry fees and camping fees are now and have been for many years a fact of life. Living on a fixed income, I was alarmed to learn that non resident state park entry fees for an annual pass had gone to $500.00. So I bumped up the Wisconsin DNR and parks on my trusty phone and was much relieved to learn that the sticker for
2018 was only $38.00. It was then I realized that for less than 11 cents a day I could visit the Wisconsin state park system every day for a whole year. Park fees for camping did not look too bad to me either. Iíll guarantee you they are higher in several states in our great country. And some places in Canada. So do your homework, put 11cents in a fruit jar every day this year and youíll have a Wisconsin state parks sticker paid for by Christmas. Start today with the cost of two modest meals at McDonalds with a $10 bill and youíre caught up through March.
Iowa Dave
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 11:56 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
floyd's Avatar
 
Name: Floyd
Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
IllAnnoy
Posts: 6,543
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowa Dave View Post
We camp throughout the United States and into Canada each year with our Escape Travel Trailer. Park entry fees and camping fees are now and have been for many years a fact of life. Living on a fixed income, I was alarmed to learn that non resident state park entry fees for an annual pass had gone to $500.00. So I bumped up the Wisconsin DNR and parks on my trusty phone and was much relieved to learn that the sticker for
2018 was only $38.00. It was then I realized that for less than 11 cents a day I could visit the Wisconsin state park system every day for a whole year. Park fees for camping did not look too bad to me either. I’ll guarantee you they are higher in several states in our great country. And some places in Canada. So do your homework, put 11cents in a fruit jar every day this year and you’ll have a Wisconsin state parks sticker paid for by Christmas. Start today with the cost of two modest meals at McDonalds with a $10 bill and you’re caught up through March.
Iowa Dave
You make a good point... problem is that most out of staters would not stay all year and the fee plus the out of state penalty, raises the average stay by more than $12 per day.
A single four day summer weekend at Devil's Lake in 2018 will now exceed $200 for an out of state visitor. This does not include access to nearby flat bike trails which would cost another $50 for two season passes.
Stay all year and add $14600 to that 11Ę per day.

Speaking of Devil's Lake... I understand that they must honor the federal Golden Age Pass , due to the Ice Age Trail. Not sure what all that entails.
floyd is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 12:52 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2013Escape 21
Iowa
Posts: 258
Hi Floyd,
My original point was that inaccurate information regarding the cost of a park sticker was presented as fact. Your math is sound. It should be pointed out that Devils Lake is premium priced about 30 percent above most of the other state parks in Wisconsin. I've camped Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa , Indiana, Ohio, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma. North Dakota, South Dakota, Kentucky, and Tennessee, Colorado, New Mexico, and several others, all in the past four years. I haven't found any of them to be beyond my meager means so I guess I'll just buy another jar of peanut butter and go camping. If I win the lottery, I'm going to go over to Mississippi Palisades State Park in Illinois and donate enough money to roof some of the beautiful buildings they are letting irresponsibly deteriorate for the want of a cost of a roof. But that's a discussion for another day.
Iowa Dave
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 01:20 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Name: Steve
Trailer: Casita 17 ft DLX SD
NW Wisconsin
Posts: 3,224
The last time we stopped at a Wisconsin SP for a one night stay on the way home , we paid $13 for a 1 day sticker , $33 for a campsite with electricity but there was no water or bathrooms that were open or available and a $10 reservation fee plus additional state taxes .The total was almost $60 .
Wisconsin Parks have also cut services & staff plus raised or added fees to / for other activities
When we went through Iowa at the same time of the year we stayed at an Iowa SP for $16 a night
Others such as Iowa Dave may believe $60 / night with no services as reasonable but I do not.
My $500,00 was an exaggeration to prove a point evident ally missed by one or two people
Some states want tourism and some don't !!

My so called attack on Wisconsin Parks was not personal .
Evidently some are unable to respond in like manner.
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 02:12 PM   #8
Member
 
jon carpenter's Avatar
 
Name: jon
Trailer: 2012 Casita 17' SD
Illinois
Posts: 69
Dave,
Depending on how far south you want to drive, Shawnee National Forest has some beautiful campgrounds. Being a NF, most campgrounds are more primitive. My favorite is Bell Smith Springs (just west of Eddyville). Only about 18 campsites, but there is one spigot and pit toilets for the campground . Also, being a NF, us seniors get a discount. Last time I was there a couple years ago, it was $10 or $15/night without our discount. Pay at the iron ranger. Not a well traveled or used area but the hiking trails and campsites are well maintained and marked. Many of the trails are steep but with the bluffs you would think you are in the little grand canyon. Campsites are far apart with lots of screening from your neighbors, which typically are few, especially this time of year.

Speaking of the Piasa area near Alton. There are many volunteer groups working to restore the damaged and ill maintained structures. From what I recall the lodge is open all year and has delicious dinners. Not far from the eagle watching areas too.

jon
jon carpenter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 02:14 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2013Escape 21
Iowa
Posts: 258
Facts

I guess all the media bombardment we enjoy every day has sensitized me to the promulgation of fake news and when I was shocked by what I thought was a fact and not warned it was an exaggeration by full disclosure I had to perform my due Diligence to learn just what a park sticker in Wisconsin costs. Perhaps if state funds were reallocated in Wisconsin, the governor would not be flying around in a 360 mph airplane with twin engines. And park stickers would be less costly. But hey, we all like perks , right?
Iowa Dave
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 02:46 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
floyd's Avatar
 
Name: Floyd
Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
IllAnnoy
Posts: 6,543
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by jon carpenter View Post
Dave,
Depending on how far south you want to drive, Shawnee National Forest has some beautiful campgrounds. Being a NF, most campgrounds are more primitive. My favorite is Bell Smith Springs (just west of Eddyville). Only about 18 campsites, but there is one spigot and pit toilets for the campground . Also, being a NF, us seniors get a discount. Last time I was there a couple years ago, it was $10 or $15/night without our discount. Pay at the iron ranger. Not a well traveled or used area but the hiking trails and campsites are well maintained and marked. Many of the trails are steep but with the bluffs you would think you are in the little grand canyon. Campsites are far apart with lots of screening from your neighbors, which typically are few, especially this time of year.

Speaking of the Piasa area near Alton. There are many volunteer groups working to restore the damaged and ill maintained structures. From what I recall the lodge is open all year and has delicious dinners. Not far from the eagle watching areas too.

jon
I was just in Metropolis a couple of days a go and Ft Massac
State Park was closed. I think no reservations until May 1st.
That is literally as far south as you can go and still be in Illinois which about 425 miles north to south.
floyd is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 02:51 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Name: bob
Trailer: Was A-Liner now 13f Scamp
Missouri
Posts: 2,739
steve the day I pay something like that will never happen this is way out of sight for camping

bob

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
The last time we stopped at a Wisconsin SP for a one night stay on the way home , we paid $13 for a 1 day sticker , $33 for a campsite with electricity but there was no water or bathrooms that were open or available and a $10 reservation fee plus additional state taxes .The total was almost $60 .
Wisconsin Parks have also cut services & staff plus raised or added fees to / for other activities
When we went through Iowa at the same time of the year we stayed at an Iowa SP for $16 a night
Others such as Iowa Dave may believe $60 / night with no services as reasonable but I do not.
My $500,00 was an exaggeration to prove a point evident ally missed by one or two people
Some states want tourism and some don't !!

My so called attack on Wisconsin Parks was not personal .
Evidently some are unable to respond in like manner.
k0wtz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 03:09 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2013Escape 21
Iowa
Posts: 258
We camped in a state park about 15 or 20 miles
South of Carbondale late one fall on the last day the camp host was in residence. I went over to her site to ask about firewood availability. She had
A large pile of split seasoned oak. She said the park guys kept her supplied and that I was welcome to any and all of it. Then I noticed a large persimmon tree loaded with persimmons. They were at their peak ripeness so I picked some. Then we went to Carbondale and had a nice meal and watched a football game which my team won. Then back to the campground for a nice fire. What a fine day in an Illinois state park. The cost I honestly canít remember, the day, a lifetime memory.
Iowa Dave
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 04:46 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Name: bob
Trailer: Was A-Liner now 13f Scamp
Missouri
Posts: 2,739
camping fees

one time we were going to tent in a Colorado state park this was years ago. they wanted then 23.00 a night for a tent and 23.00 if you had a huge rig that used tons of electricity.

we only spent 1 night there and moved and hit private parks. their camping fees made no sense!

bob
k0wtz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2018, 05:06 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: 2010 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe
Wisconsin
Posts: 171
I have been watching the weather report for next weekend in many different locales pretty far south in IL and think it is a bit early. I don't want to deal with frozen water lines and re winterizing.

With that said I noticed the thread got derailed a bit. I have said a little about WI state parks last year, and yes, it is a shame what the costs have come to. The state parks are now payed for by just user fees with no funding from the state and it is now showing. From what we have seen, the facilities are run down, the campsites are not kept up, there are fewer rangers or workers, and they are not very affordable. You have to book online to reserve america which I personally think is a ripoff, and yes, the out of state campers are racked over the coals in cost. Hotel rooms are now pretty close in price.

I liken the state parks to roads. The roads don't pay for themselves, they draw commerce. Many out of state visitors spend a lot of cash if they are drawn to an area. Maintaining these parks and infrastructure pays off in many indirect ways. I can't help but think the master plan is to make the WI state parks fail so they can either privatize them or sell off all the prime real estate to the highest bidders and put up houses and condos. Thirty years ago we nearly always camped at WI state parks, about 9 times out of 10. Now we may camp at one or two the whole year. WI can't keep neglecting these crown jewels of the landscape. I hope they see some positive changes soon.
__________________

Vtec is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Camping in March in Denver area. Kevin K General Chat 7 01-13-2015 08:36 PM
Camping between VT and CO in March Paul O. Camping, Campout Reports 2 01-15-2014 05:27 PM
Campground Suggestions - March -SoCal mish p Camping, Campout Reports 13 10-11-2009 10:54 PM
Cloudland Canyon GA State Park March 20-22 TomP Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Archive) 2 03-01-2009 06:01 AM
March 12-15 rally Billy Hammond Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Archive) 0 01-27-2009 03:30 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:17 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.