Located in DeWitt County, Illinois, in the vicinity of Clinton, Clinton Lake State Recreation Area is an enchanting place where you can escape to recharge your batteries and explore a variety of activities. It rests on 9,300 acres of land which boasts recreational opportunities, ranging from hiking and swimming to fishing and hunting. If you want a place which allows you to enjoy some peace and quiet in nature, but still offers the chance to indulge in exciting outdoor activities, search no more – Clinton Lake State Recreation Area is where you need to go for your next campervan trip.
There is no doubt you will love the breathtaking landscape, regardless of the time of the year you choose for your RV vacation. Clinton Lake State Recreation Area always offers more than magnificent views, so even if you’re into winter sports and you’re looking for snowmobiling, ice fishing, or ice skating destination, under favorable conditions, you can have the time of your life there. Those that are less adventurous can bring a picnic lunch or go for a walk alongside the lovely lake. You can also take the North Fork Trail if you’re up for a challenge or take the less difficult Houseboat Cove Trail. For hunters, 3,600 acres hides various animal species, including rabbits, squirrels, and pheasants.
As part of the Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, the park is easily accessible both from the north and the south due to Interstates 57 and 55. You can also approach it from the east or west if you take Interstate 72 or 74. Whether you take I-55 or I-57, once you pass the sign that reads “Clinton Lake State Recreation Area,” the park will be on the right side of the road.
You’ll see that the campground is rather spacious, so there should be no problem parking your motorhome and settling in. If you have a boat, you can secure it to the dock and you have a path leading right there. There is also enough room for a car and boat trailer. In case you’d like to, you can hop on your bicycle and enjoy your bike ride around the park.
There are almost 300 campsites to choose from with varying amenities spread out among Loops A-H. 277 campsites offer electric hookups, 16 provide full hookups, and about a dozen provide no hookups. Every site does offer a picnic table and fire ring. Most sites can accommodate an RV or trailer up to 40 feet long.
Pets are allowed, so if you want to bring your furry friend, you can do that, too. The area is wooded and offers peace and tranquility. A number of sites offer scenic views of Clinton Lake. Restrooms and showers are centrally located within each loop. Two dump stations are located on-site for your convenience.
Clinton Lake State Recreation Area is primarily popular among anglers for a reason. You will enjoy going to the beautiful Clinton Lake for fishing, whether just for fun or to take part in a tournament, either charitable or competitive. Crappie and catfish bite often so don't forget to pack your fishing gear in your rig.
For hikers taking their RV vacation at Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, there are several hiking trails that vary in difficulty. If you are not ready for big challenges, you might want to stick to the Houseboat Cove Trail which stretches for five miles, running alongside the shoreline and ending in the woods. In case this route sounds too easy, you can take the North Fork Trail, which is over nine miles long and it leads you through a steeper terrain.
If you’re up for some water sports while on your campervan trip, don’t miss out on the opportunity to go water skiing on Clinton Lake, which is allowed from the Route 54 bridge to the Route 48 bridge. Swimmers are not allowed here. Should you decide to go swimming, you can do so in another part of the lake, but not these 100 yards. Or you might choose to visit the sun-drenched beach after the water skiing adventure. In that case, know that the beach is open from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day.
During winter, when the lake is frozen, you shouldn’t despair because you can’t go swimming or sunbathe. For those who are adventurous enough, there's always snowmobiling. The snowmobiling adventure combined with the stunning winter landscape of the park can make your RV vacation more memorable than you’ve ever expected, so it’s without a doubt an idea worth considering if you’re visiting Clinton Lake State Recreation Area during the off season.
Another reason why Clinton Lake State Recreation Area can be just as exciting during winter as any other part of the year is ice fishing. If this is your perfect activity, you’ll be happy to hear that the North Fork together with the coves on Salt Creek are excellent for ice fishing. Just remember to bring warm, layered clothing, and don’t forget to prepare adequately and bring safety equipment, to be on the safe side.
Should you decide to leave your rig parked and go hunting, you can do that, too. There are over 3,600 acres where you can hunt, provided you have obtained the hunting permit first. In addition to rabbits, squirrels, and pheasants, there are also doves, quails, and woodcocks. When it comes to deer, you need to obtain deer hunting permit, which can be done through the Statewide lottery drawing. Waterfowl hunting is restricted from the West Side boat ramp to the Davenport bridge.