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  Eagle Creek - State Recreation Area   


East-Central Region

2341 Eagle Creek Rd
Findlay, IL 62534

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In east central Illinois--just minutes from Springfield, Decatur, Champaign, Effingham and surrounding communities--the Eagle Creek/Wolf Creek sites, facing each other across the central portion of Lake Shelbyville, provide the perfect setting for outdoor recreation, natural relaxation and luxurious accommodations for a day, a weekend, or even longer.

Four miles southeast of Findlay, the Shelby County sites encompass 11,100-acres of water, 250 miles of shoreline and large tracts of carefully maintained indigenous woodland ideal for camping, hiking, horseback riding, snowmobiling, fishing, water skiing, pontoon boating, windsurfing or just plain bobbing and drifting on the glittering expanse of the lake.

In addition to the small, friendly, wooded campgrounds and the action on the lake, large herds of deer frequent these areas and always are an exciting and inspiring sight.

Portions of the park have been cleared of physical barriers and are accessible to disabled visitors.


Like many other such areas, the Eagle Creek/Wolf Creek sites are perfect examples of the potential benefits of natural resource management. As a means of flood control, water supply and downstream water quality control, the Flood Control Act of 1958 authorized the Shelbyville Reservoir Project, which involved construction of a dam and creation of a lake. These practical necessities, however, also would allow for the actual conservation of fish and wildlife and the development of areas for exciting and varied recreational opportunities.

It was, of course, a monumental undertaking. Before work on the dam at Shelbyville could begin, several old mines had to be completely filled in, cemeteries in the path of the planned lake had to be relocated, two gas and oil pipelines and roads rerouted, the old Shelby Power Plant demolished and land cleared and leveled on the west side of the channel which hugs the bluff to the east of the river bottom. Construction of this $56 million project began in May of 1963.

The dam is an earthen embankment towering 110 feet above the original stream bed. It’s 3,025 feet long with a reinforced concrete, gate-controlled spillway to manipulate the water level and manage the 25,300 acres of its flood control pool.

Most of this work was done by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and since 1968the land has been managed by the State of Illinois on a long-term lease from the federal government. By 1972, the area offered the public providing primitive camping facilities. In the years since then, the State has purchased surrounding lands and made extensive campground, boat launch, day-use area and hiking trails improvements making this a beautiful, well-tended and well-managed natural retreat.


The Eagle Creek State Recreation Area, a 2,200-acre site on the west side of Lake Shelbyville, has several fully developed picnic areas--complete with grills, tables, water and sanitary facilities, and playgrounds--scattered conveniently throughout the park for the casual day visitor.


Picture of Resort Golf CourseThere are 75 Class A Reservable sites with electricity, showers, water hydrants, fire blocks and picnic tables. Class B/S, and Class D sites are available but not reservable. The Organized Group Camp area is reservable. Shower buildings are closed by November 1st (may be earlier if bad weather) and reopen May 1st (may be earlier if good weather).

Boating and Fishing

From the four-lane launching ramp (adjacent to a 175-car parking lot), you can set out for a variety of water sports or lazy days of angling. In addition, there are two marinas on the lake providing a full range of boating and fishing supplies.There is a handicap transfer station for boaters at the boat ramp. A high water boat ramp provides access when the lake floods.

Miles of flooded brush, timber and rock rip-rap shorelines, many points with submerges ridges and hundreds of tributary streams emptying into Lake Shelbyville provide prime and productive fishing areas, teeming with black and white crappie, largemouth bass, walleye, channel and flathead catfish, bluegill, muskie, bullhead, carp and sunfish.


Three marked nature trails are available for tranquil and refreshing sojorns in the forest. More adventurous hikers enjoy setting off on the12-mile Illini Trail. A three-mile cross-country ski trail provides invigorating wintertime activity.


In addition to designated areas within Eagle Creek, hunting is available in the 785-acre Eagle Creek Wildlife Area just to the west. Shotgun squirrel, rabbit and quail hunting ia allowed or you can really test your skill stalking deer with bow and arrow. A state hunting license is required as well as a seasonal hunting permit, available for free from the park office.  Hunter Fact Sheet

A bow range is provided for public use.

The Department of Natural Resources also manages the Shelbyville State Fish and Wildlife Area, the 3,000-acre Kaskaskia Unit near Allenville and the 3,000-acre West Okaw Unit near Bethany. Both are within 10 miles of the park and provide additional hunting opportunities.

Please check with park staff for specific information regarding species, shooting times and dates.

  • While groups of 25 or more are welcome and encouraged to use the park's facilities, they are required to register in advance with the site office to avoid crowding or scheduling conflicts.
  • At least one responsible adult must accompany each group of 15 minors.
  • Pets must be kept on leashes at all times.
  • Actions by nature can result in closed roads and other facilities. Please call ahead to the park office before you make your trip.
  • We hope you enjoy your stay. Remember, take only memories, leave only footprints.
  • For more information on tourism in Illinois, call the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs' Bureau of Tourism at 1-800-2Connect.
  • Telecommunication Device for Deaf and Hearing Impaired Natural Resources Information (217) 782-9175 for TDD only Relay Number 800-526-0844.

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