Shawnee National Forest to open majority of campgrounds

Updated: Jun. 11, 2020 at 6:55 AM CDT
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SOUTHERN ILLINOIS (KFVS) - A majority of the campgrounds and restrooms at the Shawnee National Forest will reopen on Thursday, June 12.

While the forest service is looking forward to giving visitors more ways to get out and enjoy nature, the move comes with a warning.

“We are excited to get visitors back onto the forest recreating; however, we would remind visitors to continue to follow CDC health and safety guidelines and practice good social distancing while recreating on your Shawnee National Forest,” said new Acting Forest Supervisor Robert West.

Visitors are asked to stay as local as possible when choosing a site to visit and to pack out everything they bring, especially trash. Visitors are also urged to take the precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with local health and safety guidance.

Open campgrounds include:

  • Johnson Creek Campground, Jackson County
  • Pine Hills Campground, Union County
  • Camp Cadiz Campground, Hardin County
  • Pharaoh Campground at Garden of the Gods, Saline County
  • Tower Rock Campground, Hardin County

Recreation sites with open restrooms are located at:

  • Little Grand Canyon
  • Lincoln Memorial Park
  • Bell Smith Springs
  • Rim Rock
  • Pounds Hollow Beach
  • Iron Furnace

The forest service said responsible recreation will help expand access to facilities, services, and other opportunities.

Certain services may still be unavailable, so visitors are asked to plan accordingly and to remain flexible.

Click here for updates on park closures.

The Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge began opening campgrounds and marinas on Thursday, with some limitations.

Click here for details.

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