Chicago outdoors and coronavirus: Illinois quickies, Wisconsin reminder, Indiana notes

Among the notes on Chicago outdoors and the coronavirus: Wisconsin DNR continues some restrictions, a couple of quick observations on Illinois DNR sites and the Indiana DNR extends license period and other notes.

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Dawn on March 1, opening day at Braidwood Lake; the cooling lake has been closed since March 15. Credit: Dale Bowman

Dawn on March 1, opening day at Braidwood Lake; the cooling lake has been closed since March 15.

Dale Bowman

Wisconsin has had quite a week.

Considering all the upheaval, the Wisconsin DNR posted a significant note late today, May 15. Here is the lead paragraph:

Despite the Wisconsin Supreme Court decision invalidating Gov. Evers’ Stay at Home Order, operations have not changed for Wisconsin State Parks.

Click here for the full details, especially if you have plans to head north.

Also be aware, in a sign of the times, the Wisconsin DNR now has an online purchase option for state park admission stickers. Click here for details on that.

* * *

Here in Illinois, I made a few calls this week to see if anyone had an inkling when some more key Illinois Department of Natural Resources sites would open and was happy to find out that sites are ready to roll when “Go” comes. I mean like instantly.

Here’s hoping.

Click here for the listing of open Illinois DNR sites.

By the way, one of the more infuriating things is that North Point Marina is officially listed as closed, but daily launch passes are available. I still don’t have a good explanation on that. Meanwhile, all the tradesman with time on their hands in the south, southwest and western suburbs can’t get on Braidwood Lake to fish.

* * *

In one of the more noteworthy things in Indiana, yesterday the Indiana DNR updated its closures and openings list and had this update on hunting and fishing licenses:

Hunting and fishing licenses All 2019-2020 basic hunting, basic fishing, hunt/fish combo, youth licenses and stamps set to expire March 31, 2020, are valid until Thursday, June 4, 2020. Keep a printed or electronic copy with you while hunting/fishing. If you do not have a valid 2019-2020 annual license or stamp, a new 2020-2021 annual license is required. Licenses can be purchased by visiting the Indiana Fish & Wildlife Online License System, open authorized license vendors, or calling the Indiana DNR Customer Service Center at 877-463-6367, Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Also, as of today, May 15, the usual Indiana DNR sites should be charging admission. Click here for the general extended listing of opens and closes by the Indiana DNR.

Here are some key paragraphs:

All DNR properties including state parks, state forests, fish and wildlife areas, nature preserves and state recreation areas are OPEN. However, some services and facilities are temporarily closed. See below for list. All DNR properties will resume charging entrance fees no later than May 15. A full breakdown of entrance and other fees can be found at stateparks.IN.gov/ 5062.htm.

There is a tentative date of May 24 for Indiana DNR to reopen campgrounds, cabins, and state park inns and restaurants.

There was also this on fishing tournaments, which is probably of interest to some local anglers:

All fishing tournaments on DNR owned/operated properties -CANCELED (TENTATIVELY SCHEDULED TO RESUME JUNE 14.) All fishing tournaments that require a permit through DNR, even if they are not on DNR owned/operated property -CANCELED (TENTATIVELY SCHEDULED TO RESUME JUNE 14.)

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