Hipcamp host Katie T.,
Hosted by
Katie has self-certified that Hipcamp’s COVID-19 Safety Standards have been implemented at this listing. See what’s being done here.

Pitch your tent in the woods & grassy yard on Goose Creek on the North side of Ottawa, Illinois. 

We are close to Skydive Chicago, Starved Rock, Matthiessen, Buffalo Rock, Illini State Park, The Middle East Conflicts Wall.

Ottawa & the surrounding areas have music, beer, & wine festivals (Canceled due to Covid-19).  We sit at the confluence of the Fox and Illino


Pitch your tent in the woods & grassy yard on Goose Creek on the North side of Ottawa, Illinois. 

We are close to Skydive Chicago, Starved Rock, Matthiessen, Buffalo Rock, Illini State Park, The Middle East Conflicts Wall.

Ottawa & the surrounding areas have music, beer, & wine festivals (Canceled due to Covid-19).  We sit at the confluence of the Fox and Illinois river. IL Rt 23 & Interstate 80 

This is not a camp ground. No water, power, bathrooms.  Bring a bucket & a garbage bag to hike out your waste.

Campsite area
Bring your own tents
1 site
Up to 4 guests per site
Park at listing
No ADA access
Campfires allowed
Pets allowed
No toilet
Bins available
No potable water
No kitchen
No showers
No picnic table
No wifi
Have a question? Send Katie a message!
  • Check in: After 2PM
  • Check out: Before 1PM
  • Cancellation policy: Super Flexible
  • On arrival: Meet and greet
  • Minimum nights: 1 night
  • Accepts bookings: 12 months out
  • Weeknight discount: 10% off
  • Response time: Within an hour
  • Response rate: 100%

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Firewood bundle

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Offered on the Host's property or nearby.

Wildlife watching


Natural features you'll find at Goose Creek Lost Acre in Illinois.

River, stream, or...

Places to see near East Woods on the IL River

19 Reviews

This listing has no reviews yet.
If you stayed here and have some insider info for us, let us know!
Hipcamper Travis

Cozy little alcove of the woods.

Travis M.
recommends this listing.
July 11th, 2020

Leading up to our stay, Katie was very communicative and made sure our expectations were aligned. When I mentioned the appeal of being socially distanced and avoiding the commotion of a typical campground she made sure to tell me about the train that runs nearby. She offered her other property "East Woods on the IL River" as an alternative, but we really wanted to stay here first. We mostly wanted to be able to stay socially distanced during the COVID-19 pandemic, and not having screaming children in a site 20 feet from us. Katie was very accommodating.

This property is behind the home where they live, which was nice because it added a little security knowing that we weren't just out in the middle of nowhere with nobody nearby. It's set back enough to be very private. Our tent is a large, spacious, 4-person, and I wouldn't try to fit anything very much bigger than that back in the wooded area. Katie also offered the field just outside of the woods as a potential place to set up the tent, so don't turn away yet if you have a much larger tent. You still have options. You'll spend most of your time back by the campfire anyway.

There are a couple of things to think about when you're considering this spot. I briefly alluded to the train. It is pretty close to camp. This was made very clear upfront and it wasn't an issue for us. In fact, it was sorta atmospheric. It didn't blow the whistle as it passed, but it did as it went through town, and when it passes camp, you can hear all of the noise of the wheels on the tracks and the cars clanking. It was enough to wake us up, but it didn't last long.

Also, there are a lot of tree stubs from saplings that had been lopped off at the ground to clear the space. We tripped on them frequently while walking around, so be careful. This could probably be corrected by Katie if she got a rototiller back there and tilled the ground to break the root structure and remove the stumps. Rototillers can be rented at most big hardware stores.

Now as a guest, there are some things you should think to bring. Katie did a good job of mentioning digging your own cathole, but we brought a trowel and a commode to get the job done. The trowel wasn't enough to break the root structure of the many, many plants growing on the forest floor, and we weren't able to dig very deep. We ended up opting to drive out to the Kroger nearby when we had solid waste. You would be well-advised to bring a folding shovel to get enough leverage, and maybe try to dig a couple spots ahead of time to make sure they're ready when you are. A commode is highly recommended as well.

Also, remember that there isn't a picnic table there, so if you've built your camping gear around that expectation, you need to account for its absence. We had some cheap TV trays that sufficed as stable surfaces to set things on for preparing food and keeping things up off the ground. Our cooler also served well as a multi-purpose surface.

Lastly, you'll want to remember to bring a clothesline to hang food waste or anything that may attract wildlife. We didn't have a problem with that at all while we were out there, but it's a consideration I take into account whenever I'm doing more wilderness-style camping.

As long as you take the proper precautions ahead of time, this is a LOVELY place to stay. We set up a hammock right next to the babbling brook. Off in the distance you could hear the faint clang of a baseball ricochet off an aluminum bat as a parent cheered encouragement to their child. It was peaceful, secluded, and just the getaway we needed to recharge our batteries. I have a feeling that this is going to be a mainstay for us in the future. It's the perfect distance from home and offers your own secret little slice of paradise to sit with your thoughts and just relax! I couldn't be happier with the experience I had. We will definitely return. We want to check out "East Woods on the IL River" soon, too.

This is a pretty good idea of what camp looks like all set up. It's cozy. Some of my other pictures use a wide-angle lens which may make things appear more spread out. Overall, there's still *plenty* of space to be comfortable!Goose Creek Lost AcreGoose Creek Lost AcreGoose Creek Lost Acre
Hipcamper Catherine
Catherine M.
recommends this listing.
June 23rd, 2020

Easy in/out by the woods edge with an option in the trees or grass. Katie was very responsive! Thanks for the campsite.

Hipcamper Laura

A great road-trip campsite!

Laura P.
recommends this listing.
July 20th, 2020

This was a perfect spot to pitch a tent for a night on a road trip from Rhode Island to Colorado. There is a private tent spot and firepit tucked away in the woods behind the backyard of a house, by a small creek. Because we were just there for the night, we set up our tent up against the trees on the expansive soft flat lawn outside the woods. It was extremely easy and private. There are train tracks close by, and three trains passed by in the night. They blew their whistles quite a bit, but it wasn't a problem to get back to sleep. Katie was very friendly and communicative, met us at the road after dark, and showed us the way to the campsite.

Hipcamper Maria
Maria S.
recommends this listing.
August 1st, 2020

Gracious host. Had a great time. Camp ground met and exceeded expectations. Would highly recommend and plan on returning.

Hipcamper Anna
Anna T.
recommends this listing.
August 2nd, 2020

Katie met us when she said she would, and the site was beautiful

Hipcamper Rachel
Rachel K.
recommends this listing.
August 2nd, 2020

Beautiful, secluded, convenient. The creek was gorgeous. Friendly host, safe feel.

Hipcamper Daniel
Daniel H.
recommends this listing.
August 9th, 2020

Cute little camp spot nestled away in a grove of trees, close to the creek. The camping area is small and enclosed in trees but was perfect for the two of us. Close to the city but feels secluded, and a great host.

Hipcamper William

Private site near starved rock

William C.
recommends this listing.
August 16th, 2020

We had a great time at Katie’s place! She was very responsive and gave great suggestions for sightseeing in the area. The site is gorgeous, positioned just above a creek. You can opt to camp on the grass, or under the trees next to the campfire. As others have mentioned in their reviews, there is a train that runs a few times a day near the campsite. The train didn’t bother us at all, this site is far more quiet than your typical state park campground even with the train. The site is close to several state parks including Starved Rock, and in walking distance to downtown Ottowa. Definitely worth the visit!

Hipcamper Mary
Mary M.
recommends this listing.
August 19th, 2020

We stayed at Goose lake for one night! We enjoyed our time, and it was the getaway we needed. We picked this location due to being so close to the State parks nearby. We wish there was more space cleared as our 4 person tent just fit in the clearing, and we had to be careful while in the tent due to having stumps popping up under the tent. Also we went on a very very hot weekend, however we wish there was a larger opening in the trees to vent our campfire that we needed for cooking. We arrived and were greeted by a man, not Katie, he took us to the site showed us the entrance and exit and then we were good. Not a bad or good host really just didn't have much interaction with the owner. This was also our first time using Hipcamp and we can not wait to try out another site soon!

East Woods on the IL River
United States
1 Site