Matthiessen State Park


  • The Vermillion River Area at Matthiessen State Park will be CLOSED on Wednesdays February through March of 2023.  
  • Matthiessen Dells area and Vermillion River Area typically shut down on weekends from May through October when they have reached full capacity (parking lots are full) around 11 a.m. and will not reopen again until 3 p.m.
  • Playgrounds and picnic shelters are first come, first served.
  • Sunflower fields bloom from mid-July through the first week of August for the dove hunting season located on the back side of the Matthiessen Vermillion River Area.  Signs will be posted along Route 178 and the Vermillion River Area entrance road into the park. 

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources requires any group of 20 or more persons who use Department facilities (trails, shelters, group hikes, and tour groups (schools, youth groups, families, travel or outdoor tours, etc) to have advance written permission from the Site Superintendent or Site Manager. Activity Permit  Activity Permits must be submitted to at least 3 weeks prior to the visit for site and state approval.  Filming permits and Permits to Sell must be requested at least 1 month in advance by emailing  


Horseback trails at the Matthiessen Vermillion River Area will be closed on November 9th in order for the IDNR to perform a prescribed burn.  All other trails in the area and at the Dells will be open as usual. 


  • No Swimming in park waterfalls, creeks, or the River.

  • Rock Climbing/rappelling is not allowed anywhere in the park.

  • Bicycles, scooters, skates, and skateboards are not allowed on the trails in the Matthiessen Dells Area. Bike trails can be found at the Matthiessen Vermillion River Area only.

  • Drones are not allowed at either park.

  • Metal detecting is not allowed at either park.

  • It is illegal to possess alcohol at the park. 

  • It is illegal to possess intoxicating substances at either park.

  • It is illegal to go off trail or make new trails at either park. Please follow paved trails that are wider than two people and marked with posts, dots on trees, and maps at intersections.

Trails and Trail Map

Canyons, streams, prairie, and forest combine to delight visitors at Matthiessen State Park. Located in LaSalle County, approximately 4 miles south of Utica, and 3 miles east of Oglesby, Matthiessen is a paradise for those interested in geology, as well as recreation. Visitors can expect to see beautiful rock formations in addition to unusual and abundant vegetation and wildlife. All of this, along with park and picnic facilities, make Matthiessen State Park a popular choice for an outing.

Matthiessen Trail Map Matthiessen Trail Map

Park Information:

Northwestern Illinois

Box 509
Utica IL 61373



N: 41.286
W: -89.025

Matthiessen State Park Site Map

Other Parks in Illinois:

Map of Illinois DNR Regions State Parks in Northwestern IllinoisState Parks in Northeastern IllinoisState Parks in East Central IllinoisState Parks in West Central IllinoisState Parks in Southern Illinois