Do you and your family enjoy boating, hiking, or swimming? Experience all this and more at Pounds Hollow Recreation Area. Pounds Hollow offers a variety of outdoor activities that are sure to appeal to the entire family. Twenty five acres of scenic woodland creates a plethora of natural diversions. Finished in the 1940’s by the Civilian Conservation Corpsmen (CCC), the lake at Pounds Hollow and the surrounding trails continue to provide plenty of activities for an entire weekend, or you can pack it all into a day.
Hiking Pounds Hollow
Hike Beaver trail to get a full view of the lake. Observe the active fauna while taking an easy walk down the dirt path and over wooden bridges that traverse small streams feeding into the lake. A dense canopy of trees keeps the sun at bay while you enjoy the spectacular natural sites one is likely to encounter while navigating this woodland habitat.
Hiker trails are marked with a blue diamond. Go horseback riding along many of Pounds Hollow’s equestrian/hiker trails marked with a white diamond! For a longer hike, take Beaver Trail Southwest approximately a half mile past the lake and arrive at the lower Rim Rock trail.
Swimming at the Beach
The large stone pavilion built by the CCC provides amazing views of the lake and beach area and comes equipped with several large picnic tables. There are also more than a few lakeside picnic areas available for Shawnee Forest visitors.
Cool off by taking a swim at the beach in the designated swimming area! Lay back in the sand while the children splash on the shoreline or dive in with them from dawn until dusk! Stay within the buoys for safe swimming experience.
Boating and Fishing
During daytime hours, small boats are allowed on the lake, which is stocked with largemouth bass, channel catfish, and sunfish for our fishermen friends! Please, only electric motors on the lake to protect the Pounds Hollow Recreation Area from unnecessary human impact and preserve the wildlife that many Shawnee National Forest visitors have come to enjoy.
The Park Ridge Campsite offers more than thirty five campsites with trails connected to the beach. Camping is available April 1st through December 15th and no reservations are accepted. Park camping is strictly first come, first serve. Fees for camping may vary.
Directions to The Pounds
To experience all Pounds Hollow Recreation Area has to offer, take IL-34 to Karber’s Ridge Road (1180 N). After driving 9.5 miles, take a left onto Pounds Lake. Within 100 feet veer left and continue for 0.5 miles. Pounds Hollow Recreation Area will be on the left.