Visitors Guide to the
Cedar Lake
Cedar Creek Road
Carbondale, Illinois

Accessible Parking Accessible Picnic Facilities Hiking Trails Wildlife Viewing Fishing Opportunities Boat Ramp Swimming Opportunities Primitive Camping Allowed Accessible Concession Stand Accessible Restrooms


Cedar Lake is a 1,750-acre reservoir created by the damming of Cedar Creek, a tributary of the Big Muddy River, in 1974. The lake is located south of Murphysboro and southwest of Carbondale, Illinois. Although the lake was constructed for the purpose of supplying tap water to the residents of Carbondale it provides fishing, swimming, and active recreation purposes. Cedar Lake is managed for bass (largemouth and striped) and crappie fishing. Fishermen can also fish for Channel catfish and bluegill. The city of Carbondale operates a parking lot, swimming beach, and boat dock at Cedar Lake. An admission fee is charged for the beach, but access to other sites is free of charge. The boat power limit for the lake is 10 horsepower or less. There is also an extensive trail system running around the lake that is able to be hiked year-round. The Cedar Lake Trail System totals 14 miles in length, and consists of four separate trails. Four trailheads provide access to the Cedar Lake trail system. For the perfect day-hike try either Wolf Den Hollow loop trail or Little Cedar Lake loop trail. Both feature spectacular scenic overlooks, views of the lake, rock shelters and rock walls. Although there are no developed campsites near the lake, primitive camping is allowed at least 150 ft. from the shoreline on the southern end of the lake.

  Visiting Cedar Lake
          Area hours: 6 am - 10 pm
          Beach hours: Memorial Day - Labor Day
               Weekdays: 9:30 am - 5:30 pm
               Weekends: 9:30 am - 7:30 pm

There is no charge to visit Cedar Lake.
Directions: From Carbondale take US 51 south to the intersection of Old and New US 51, follow Old US 51 approximately 2 miles to Cedar Creek Road, travel west on Cedar Creek Road and follow the signs to Cedar Creek. From Murphysboro take IL-127 south approximately 10 miles to Boat Dock Road. Turn left (east) on Boat Dock Road and proceed approximately 1 1/2 miles to Cedar Lake.
  GPS Coordinates (West side)
37 37.214'
W 89 18.103'
  Learn more about the Carbondale and Murphysboro area.  
  Cedar Lake
Information on Cedar Lake provided by the City of Carbondale
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