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Ferne Clyffe has a campground for every type of camper: modern, youth groups, or equestrian. Some campsites can be reserved online at ExploreMoreIL™.

Deer Ridge campground is a well-shaded Class A facility offering gravel pads with electricity, picnic tables and cooking grills. Drinking water, showers (available seasonally), flush toilets and a sanitary dump station complete the setting for campers who prefer to include a few comforts of home with their outdoor adventure. Deer Ridge campground has 36 reservable campsites and 23 that are first come first served. There is a self check in kiosk by the shower house. Campground Map

Turkey Ridge is for campers who want a serene outdoor experience. It is a Class C vehiclular access campground that includes camp pads, picnic tables, and cooking grills. Drinking water and toilets are located near the parking lots. Turkey Ridge campground has 20 campsites that are not reservable, they are first come first served only. There is a self check in kiosk by the parking lot for your convenience.

Group Camping - Scouts, church groups and other youth groups will enjoy the Youth Group campground. This facility is equipped with drinking water, picnic tables, cooking grills, toilets and parking. Groups of minors must have adequate supervision, with at least one adult accompanying each 15 minors. Group camping does require advance notice by calling the Park office during business hours for reservations at 618-995-2411.


Horseback riders can ride directly to their own Class C Equestrian campground on the trail, or drive to it in their vehicles. Up to 25 riders can be accommodated at the site, which includes picnic tables, drinking water, cooking grills, toilets, and parking. The campground is well-shaded by an abundance of trees, and you must protect the trees by tying horses to the hitching rails. No horse rental is available.

Fishing and Hunting

Bank fishermen will be impressed by Ferne Clyffe Lake's populations of largemouth bass, bluegill, channel catfish and redear in the lake. Hunters will appreciate the 1,750 acres of forested habitat, with good populations of deer and squirrel. Quail and rabbit populations are fair. Food patches are planted in open areas annually to enhance habitat for upland game species. Hunters must check in at the hunter check station (maintenance building) prior to hunting. Find the Hunter Fact Sheets for Cedar/Draper BluffCypress Pond, Ferne Clyffe, Skinner Farm Habitat Area, Deer Pond, and Wise Ridge

Ferne Clyffe Lake

Since 1960, the 16-acre Ferne Clyffe Lake has offered visitors additional recreational and scenic opportunities. The lake has a maximum depth of 22 feet, and a hiking trail is on the 1-mile shoreline. The lake is open to bank fishing, but boating and swimming are prohibited. Spectacular views of the lake can be seen from Lakeview Picnic Shelter and Blackjack Oak Trail.

Metal Detecting

Metal detecting in the park is by permit only, issued at the park office.


Ferne Clyffe has been a favorite picnic spot for decades. Seven picnic areas have tables, cooking grills, parking and toilets, and several also have shelters, drinking water and playground equipment. Only park grills or personal cook-stoves should be used for cooking.


Eighteen diverse trails offer visitors the chance to view the beauty of Ferne Clyffe at their own pace. Motorized vehicles and bicycles are not permitted on the trails. Equestrian use is allowed on equestrian designated trails. Equestrian trails are closed to horses from November 1 to April 30. Naturally occurring dangerous areas exist within the park, so hike on designated trails, exercise awareness and caution. Each trail has been assigned a number, as well as a name, to make map reading easy for even the novice hiker.

Round Bluff Nature Preserve

Just south of the Lakeview Picnic Shelter is the 53-acre Round Bluff Nature Preserve. This area is a marvelous mix of unique geological features and unusual plant communities. Each season brings its own beauty to the area, but spring and fall are the most colorful seasons. Dutchman's breeches, trillium, spring beauty, trout lily and other woodland wildflowers add vibrant color to the ground cover in the spring. Fall's colder temperatures change the deep greens of the summer tree foliage to a spectacular mix of reds, purples, golds and browns that cover every hillside. Within the preserve, hiking is restricted to marked trails only. All plants and animals within the preserve are protected by law.​

Rock Climbing

Ferne Clyffe State Park offers a premier sport climbing destination. There are three locations that allow rock climbing, Cedar Bluff, Rebman trail, and the newly created area at Boat Rock where 8 walls are easily accessible from the parking areas where grills, drinking water, a shelter with playground, and pit toilets are at your disposal. Our class "A" campground is within a 10 minute walk from the climbing areas as well. Ferne Clyffe provides up to 150 routes (when complete) for climbers of all skill levels to enjoy, from beginner to expert climbers. Please click here for specific climbing information.