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“Great Weekend of Camping and Hiking”

Starved Rock State Park
Ranked #1 of 15 things to do in Utica
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Known for its magnificent rock formations of St. Peter sandstone, this scenic park offers many hiking and horseback riding trails plus fishing and boating along the banks of the Illinois River.
Chicago, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Great Weekend of Camping and Hiking”
Reviewed July 8, 2013

Took the grandchildren (8 & 12) for a camping weekend. Visitor's Center is very nice with educational exhibits, small cafe, and gift shop. Campsites were very good -- we got the very last one so it wasn't as nice as some others but still very good. There are hot showers and flush toilets. There is potable water at the sites. Sites have electricals and are set up for tents or large campers. Firewood is avilable at the camp store (the fire starters @ $2 ea. are a good investment.

Skip the paddle boat tour.

The Hike & Lunch is really great. Our guide was a geologists who taught us a lot about the rock formations and the history of the park. The hike is a little strenuous but not too bad. It was in the 90's when we went so that made it a little tough. La Salle Canyon is worth the whole trip. There are some outstanding views of the IL River. Don't miss it.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank dixiexpat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rochelle, Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“A good day with great weather!”
Reviewed July 8, 2013

We went in the early morning and the walk was very nice. We hiked several trails since we had never been there before. We plan on returning, since we were too tired to finish hiking everywhere we wanted to visit.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Carol H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Not typical of Illinois!”
Reviewed July 8, 2013

My family just recently moved to Illinois from North Carolina and had visitors for the Fouth of July holiday. We wanted an outside activity and were told about Starved Rock by several people. We were told the terrain was not typical of Central Illinois. Our visitors enjoy hiking, so off we went on the Fourth! The park was PACKED! Many families out picnicking, barbecuing, playing games. Parking was at a premium. We found a spot and walked to the visitor center, where we saw a 15 minute film about the evolution and history of Starved Rock. We then picked a trail that would take about 3 hours and off we went! It was hot and humid, so I would recommend bug spray and plenty of water and snacks and appropriate attire. The trails were very crowed by people really not dressed for hiking, ie: flip flops. Tennis shoes or hiking boots are best. Most of the trails were either plank staircases or paved/dirt. Very little in the way of natural trails that were marked for hiking. The woods were lovely and cooling in the shade. We saw a wild turkey and 4 pullets, a chipmunk and assorted birds. My biggest complaint were the people that brought their dogs. The stairs are not really made for canines, especially the tiny ones and I saw more than one that appeared to be genuinely in distress. ( Dogs need 3 times more water on a hike than they normally do) Do them a favor and leave them in the comfort of their home or yard! I would go back again on a less busy day!

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Kitkat27893
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Ok for family camping. Nothing special”
Reviewed July 7, 2013

We camped for two night with two young kids along with two of my friends with their family with young kids. Camp sites were deep in the woods, almost no direct sun. Full of animals at night. Did not attack us or anything. Just bit bothering as you have to keep all the food in car closed all the time. Cat ate our marshmallow on first evening!

Big problem was shower and flush toilet building was closed for most part of our stay. That was the only one for the loop we stayed.

All the water fountain area flooded as outlet does not work - messy.

We planned to go for fishing around 4am but could not as camp ground gate opens at at 8am and there is no trail to access Illinois river side for fishing.

Cheap rate for camping. Easy access to highway. Easy to go to state park for hiking. We hiked with kids for hours. That was fun!

I will not go back to this place for camping again.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank CampingDeb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“a get away to Starved Rock”
Reviewed June 27, 2013

My husband and I took advantage of the midweek specials offered at Starved Rock Lodge. We were given a King sized cabin room with a dinner and breakfast voucher toward food costs. We had a wonderful trip. Although very humid weather, we still enjoyed the park's well built trails. We were able to enjoy beautiful vistas, waterfalls, a close encounter with a doe, wild turkeys, birds, and migrating pelicans. The food at the lodge was very good and enjoyable. The hot tub felt awesome after all the hiking, and our room was dark but comfortable. We decided that this is the place to go when needing an outdoor experience in Illinois. Our only complaint is about visitors who leave their trash in the woods. Starved Rock is the place to visit in Illinois. We hope to go back when the Eagles are flying in the winter.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Illinoistanner2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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