News you can use
Up your fishing game this summer by entering the Forest Preserve's Big Fish Contest at Monee Reservoir. The contest runs from July 1 through Aug. 31.
Monee Reservoir Visitor Center will be closing at 4 p.m. instead of 7 p.m. starting Aug. 16 due to a staffing shortage. But the visitor center will be open normal hours, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., on the three-day Labor Day weekend.
The 248-acre Monee Reservoir was acquired between 1982 and 2006.
The preserve is part of the Rock Creek preservation system, which conserves more than 460 acres.
Prior to the District's acquisition of the land, its 46-acre lake was created and used by a railroad to supply water to steam engines.
PLAN YOUR ADVENTURE ON THIS PRESERVE'S INTERACTIVE MAP
Monee Reservoir protects a 46-acre lake with associated wetland habitat.
Wildlife found at the preserve includes mink and more than 120 bird species.
The preserve is also home to a variety of plant species, including large-leaved pondweed.
Amenities and activities
Monee Reservoir features 1.66 miles of natural surface trail, ideal for the following activities:
- Cross-country skiing
The preserve offers two picnic shelters for rental:
- Bluegill Hill Shelter, which has a permit capacity of 200 people.
- Catfish Corner Shelter, which has a permit capacity of 75 people.
The preserve also offers a picnic grove for rental, Monee Grovem which has a permit capacity of 100 people.
The preserve offers access to shoreline fishing on its 46-acre lake. The lake is stocked with bluegill, black crappie, largemouth bass and channel catfish. Catch-and -release fishing is encouraged, but daily limits are:
The Monee Reservoir Visitor Center offers fishing poles for rental and fishing licenses for purchase. The visitor center also offers bait, tackle and snacks for sale.
Minnows must be purchased from the concessions building. The use of live crayfish is prohibited.
Check current fishing conditions at Monee Reservoir Tuesday through Sunday by calling 708-534-8499.
The preserve features a canoe/kayak launch on the lake. A one-day or seasonal launch pass is required for the use of personal canoes or kayaks, and may be purchased from the Monee Reservoir Visitor Center. All Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) boating regulations are enforced.
Canoes and kayaks are also available for rental for use on the lake May 1-September 30. Life vests and paddles are included with the rental. Fishing is permitted from canoes and kayaks. Receive a free canoe or kayak rental after five identical rentals with a "Monee Madness" card, available at the visitor center.
All persons in a rented canoe or kayak at Monee Reservoir must wear a personal flotation device at all times. Learn more about canoeing/kayaking in the forest preserves and rental/launch pass fees.
The Monee Reservoir Visitor Center typically offers rowboats and pedalboats for rental for use on the lake April 1-October 31. Boats are rented on a first-come, first-served basis. All Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) boating regulations are enforced. Receive a free boat rental after five identical rentals with a "Monee Madness" card, available at the visitor center.
Fishing is permitted from rowboats. Life vests, oars and paddles are included with the rental. Trolling motors, trolling motor batteries and anchors are also available for rental.
The launch of personal fishing boats is not permitted at this preserve.
Permits are available for geocaching at this preserve.
The Monee Reservoir Visitor Center offers rowboats, pedal boats, canoes, kayaks, fishing poles and sport items for rental. It also offers fishing licenses; bait and tackle; snacks; canoe/kayak launch passes; and picnic permits.