Spring Lake Fish and Wildlife Area is located in Tazewell County, 25 miles southwest of Peoria on the east side of the Illinois River.
In 1950 the state made the initial land acquisition of the 632 acres. The total acreage is now 2,032.
The lake lies almost parallel to the Illinois river for 8.5 miles up the river bottoms along the base of the river's east bluff. Spring Lake was described as a meander by an 1840 survey, and title was given to the State of Illinois.
Overlooked by a large sandstone bluff, Spring Lake is a long, narrow lake created by a meander of the Illinois River. The lake covers an area of 1,285 acres, has a maximum depth of 10 feet and has 18 miles of shoreline.
The lake water level was raised by the construction of a higher dike in the late 1950s. The expanded lake was completely filled by 1960. The new lake was completely filled by 1960. The new lake is nearly twice the size of the old Spring Lake and has also inundated another lake known as Saiwell Lake.
Fishing and Boating
The lake is divided into two separate lakes. North lake has largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie, muskie, channel catfish, sunfish, bullheads, and carp. The south lake has largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie, channel catfish, northern pike, sunfish, and carp.
There is one gravel and one concrete launching ramps on the north lake. South Lake has one concrete boat launching ramp. Boat motors are limited to 25 horsepower and there are creel and length limits on most species. Ice fishing is permitted, but caution should be used due to underwater springs, which can weaken ice.
Hikers can enjoy five trails within the park. The Stage Coach Road hiking trail is 2.5 miles long, Deer Run hiking trail is one-half mile long, and the Whispering Pine hiking trail is divided into three separate trails of one-half mile, 1.5 miles, and 2.5 miles.
Waterfowl, squirrel and deer archery hunting are allowed at Spring Lake. Please check with Hunter Fact Sheets concerning site regulations, season dates, limits, and designated hunting areas for Spring Lake SFWA, Pekin Lake, Powerton Lake, and Manito Pheasant Habitat Area.
There are five-day use/picnic areas at Spring Lake. Two of these areas provide shelters. All five areas have picnic tables. A concessionaire, located near the south boat ramp, provides boat rentals.
Pine Campground and Oak Campground, located in the north park, are Class C campgrounds (no showers or electric sites). Sixty sites provide tent camping.
A Class D, walk-in campground is located in the south park for tent camping only. Group camping is permitted in this campground. No alcoholic beverages are allowed in the campgrounds.