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Big Bend

2020 - 2021 Season


LOCATION: Whiteside County, 4 miles west of Prophetstown, along the Rock River on Vandamme Road and Banks Road.

DESCRIPTION: Total acres: 2,376 acres, including 46 acres of water. Hunting acres: 2,338. Composition: Timber and shrub - 791 acres; open or cultivated - 1158 acres.

The area consists of two major cover types. The uplands (approximately 250 acres) is sandy soil with fields bordered by tree lines. The bottomlands (2,088 acres) is flat, interspersed with native grassland, tree plantings and tracts of woods. There are several small wetlands and marshes, and two oxbows totaling 96 acres of water.


SpeciesSeasonHunting HoursBag LimitSpecial Regulations

Sept 1-5: 12pm - 5:00 pm;

after Sept. 5: 12pm noon - sunset 

StatewideSee Regs. 14 & 15 below.  Springfield issued permit for Sept.1 - 5. Non-toxic shot required
SquirrelStatewideStatewideStatewideshotgun only
Deer (Archery Only)StatewideStatewideStatewideSee Regs. 5 & 8 below
Heritage Youth TurkeyStatewideStatewideStatewideStatewide
Turkey (Spring)StatewideStatewideStatewideSee Regs. 9 & 10 below
Turkey (Fall Archery)StatewideStatewideStatewideClosed during firearm deer season 
Pheasant, Quail, Rabbit, Hungarian PartridgeStatewideStatewideStatewideSee Regs. 7, 12 below. Non-toxic shot required for upland game, #2 or 3 suggested
Woodcock, Rail and SnipeStatewideStatewideStatewide 
Raccoon & OpossumStatewideStatewideStatewideSee Reg. 4 below
Red and Gray FoxStatewideStatewideStatewideSee Reg. 4 below
SkunkStatewideStatewideStatewideSee Reg. 4 below
CoyoteAug 1st thru Feb 28thStatewideStatewideSee Reg. 4 below
Furbearer TrappingStatewideStatewideStatewideSe Reg. 13 below

  1. Hunting is restricted to those portions of the area posted as open to hunting.
  2. All hunters must register once a day with name and date prior to hunt and record harvest upon completion of hunt. Record 0 if nothing was harvested. Registration will be at parking lots 1, 2, 3, or 4.
  3. All hunters are responsible for following all statewide regulations and any special regulations posted at parking lots 1, 2, 3 or 4.
  4. All hunting is to be done with shotgun or bow and arrow only, except .22 rim fire and smaller may be used to take raccoon, opossum, fox, coyote and skunk from sunset to sunrise.
  5. It shall be unlawful to construct or to use any tree stand that utilizes nails, screws, wire or any device which pierces or cuts the bark of the tree on which it is installed. Only one tree stand or ground stand per hunter. May be left unattended from Sept. 15 through Jan. 31, but stands must be marked with owner's name, address, & telephone number.
  6. It shall be unlawful for any person to possess or consume beer or any intoxicating liquors before or while hunting on the area.
  7. Hunters engaged in quail, rabbit, pheasant, or Hungarian partridge hunting must wear a cap and upper outer garment of SOLID BLAZE ORANGE of at least 400 squ​are inches.
  8. Archery deer hunting will be allowed during all firearm deer seasons. An archery permit is needed to hunt during the firearm deer seasons. All hunters must wear a cap and upper outer garment of SOLID BLAZE ORANGE of at least 400 sq. inches.
  9. All spring turkey hunters must obtain a site-specific permit, which will be issued through the Permit Office in Springfield. Spring wild turkey permits valid for Whiteside Co. will not be valid at Big Bend SFWA. For youth spring turkey, a Whiteside Co. permit is valid.
  10. In an effort to distribute turkey hunters throughout the site, hunters are encouraged to use another parking lot when 2 cars are already present in a parking lot during the turkey season.
  11. All hunters must park in designated parking lots.
  12. Quail season closes at sunset on December 14th.
  13. Trapping permits (N=3) will be issued thru annual drawing held at Morrison Rockwood State Park. Contact Site Superintendent at (815) 772-4708 for drawing date and time. Dog proof traps required. Note foothold trap jaw size change after rabbit season for water sets.
  14. Permit issued thru Springfield Office for Sept 1 - 5th of dove season.  Applications accepted beginning in June.  (See DNR website, www.dnr.illinois.gov)
  15. Non-toxic shot required. #6 steel or #7 bismuth & tungsten or smaller may be possessed for doves. #3 steel or tin, #4 bismuth shot, or #6 tungsten-iron, tungsten-polymer, tungsten-matrix or smaller may be used or possessed for upland game.

For further information contact: Site Superintendent: 18750 Lake Road, Morrison, IL 61270. Telephone: 815-772-4708​​​

Equal opportunity to participate in programs of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) and those funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies is available to all individuals regardless of race, sex, national origin, disability, age, religion, or other non-merit factors. If you believe you have been discriminated against, contact the funding source’s civil rights office and/or the Equal Employment Opportunity Officer, IDNR, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702; (217)785-0067; TTY (217)782-9175.