Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Area
One of Illinois' largest public access areas, Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Area (JEPC) in central Illinois is a mosaic of mature forest land, agricultural land, grassland and rare hill prairie that is home to a rich assortment of wildlife.
The site, including the former Panther Creek Conservation Area, now totals 16,550 acres. Formerly known as Site M, it was acquired by the State of Illinois from Commonwealth Edison after the company abandoned plans for a coal-fired power plant and cooling lake in Cass County. Since 1993, IDNR has developed the site for conservation and recreation, adding hundreds of acres of native and cool season grasses, habitat strips and trees on former pasture, idling hundreds of other acres allowed to move towards forest through natural succession.
Best camp host ever during our stay in Sep '17. He walked out and greeted us with a smile and friendly conversation while giving us directions and a rundown of the campground and facilities. He was out and about the campground often during each day we stayed and always offered at least a smile and wave, if not a brief stop to chat. The nearby lake was nice and seemed to provide for some fun kayaking and fishing opportunities. The sites were mostly level and well spaced, but greenery was very limited. There are trees, but they are relatively few and many are 20 years away from providing any real coverage. Was still a nice place overall, but the host gained an extra star on his own!
A great place to spend a day hiking. Dense forest, mild hills, beautiful and serene lakes (see my picture here), and very private. My only minor gripe is that the online map is not reliable. If you go, stop by an in-park sign post and look for the park brochure that has a better map. There are several different trails here, so the map will really help you to get on the one you want.
Nice clean. Camped 4 nights very quite clean restrooms lots were maintained grass was cut. Hosts were helpful. Id go back
Absolutely love it! Cabins, campfires, fishing, and more! All cabins except #5 have a view. They're hot in the summer, so bring a fan. Be sure to reserve a cabin in advance.
Very nice sites, spacious and clean. The roads in the camp grounds have craters that you can drop a small travel trailer into, stayed for 3 nights/4 days 2 of the 4 sinks had no running water and 1 of the urinals was inoperable and overflowing. Showers worked well though. Didn't understand the truck with the state plates parked at the sundance 5th wheel every day and night.😐