Camp local at Forest Preserve District of Kane County
Make plans to "Camp Local" this year, with the Forest Preserve District of Kane County. You don't have to drive far or spend a fortune to experience camping -- it's available right here in Kane County.
Whether you're interested in vehicle camping, tent camping or even camping with your horses, Forest Preserve District campgrounds have sites available to meet your needs.
Recreational camping is open each year from May 1 through Oct. 31 at Paul Wolff Campground and Big Rock Campground.
Paul Wolff Campground, within Burnidge Forest Preserve in Elgin, contains 104 total camp sites. There are 89 improved sites complete with 50-amp electrical service, water access, parking pads and fire rings. There are 10 primitive sites for tents-only camping. Primitive sites do not have electricity.
There are also five equestrian camp sites. ADA-accessible camp sites are available upon request.
The surrounding Burnidge Forest Preserve contains more than 700 acres of rolling hills and woodlands along with 9 miles of hiking trails, including a 2.25-mile multipurpose trail suitable for hiking, biking or equestrian use; fully stocked fish ponds; a picnic shelter; and a climbing rock. Paul Wolff Campground is at 38W235 Big Timber Road, Elgin.
Big Rock Campground, within Big Rock Forest Preserve in Big Rock, contains 109 total camp sites. There are 96 improved campsites with 50-amp electrical service, water access, parking pads and fire rings. There are 9 primitive, tent-only sites without electric access. There are four equestrian sites. There are also ADA-accessible camp sites available upon request.
The surrounding Big Rock Forest Preserve is an 850-acre preserve containing several sandy hills that overlook the valley filled with woodlands and crystal clear streams. Catch-and-release fishing is permitted at the campground pond, as well as in the preserve's former quarry, Siegler Lake.
There are more than 10 miles of hiking trails suitable for hiking, biking or equestrian use, and two picnic shelters for campers to utilize. Big Rock Campground is at 46W499 Granart Road, Big Rock.
Daily fees for the improved camp sites with pad, electric and water at both campgrounds are $20 for Kane County residents and $35 for nonresidents. Primitive/non-electric camp sites are $12 per day for Kane County residents and $18 for nonresidents. Equestrian camp sites are $15 per day for Kane County residents and $25 for nonresidents. Dump stations are $15 per day. Firewood is available at registration for $5 per bundle.
Sites are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Campground reservations are not taken for the public, however, the forest preserve district does take reservations for camping clubs with a minimum number of sites reserved and paid in advance.
The campground hotline at (630) 444-1200 is updated daily during the camping season, and provides more information on camp site availability and conditions.
If you want to go camping but don't have the experience or equipment to do so, try out the "Camp with a Ranger: Introduction to Camping" program. This is designed to introduce first-time families to the world of camping.
Experienced staff will guide you through the necessary steps such as site setup, cooking and fire building. Registration is $40 and is intended for one family or group of up to six people.
Call (630) 232-5980 to register or for more information; or visit www.kaneforest.com.