Sand Ridge State Forest is one of the states largest state forests with over 7200 acres. The site is most notable for its almost 2500 acres of extensive pine plantations, but also contains many native oaks, hickory trees, and sand prairies.

Ornithological Summary

This site was chosen as an IBA because it met the criteria for Whip-poor-wills.

Conservation Issues

The state forest is still open to logging. Hunting, snowmobiles, and other recreational activities may cause disturbance to some species.


Illinois Department of Natural Resources
West-Central Region
P.O. Box 111
Forest City, IL 61532


Sand Ridge contains almost 2500 acres of pine forest that was first planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps starting in 1939. The site contains sand prairies including the Henry Allen Gleason Nature Preserve where unusual species like Badger and prickly-pear cactus can be found.

Land Use

The pine forests are open to logging for timber, camping is available at 27 class C sites, hunting is popular during the fall season. Other land uses include equestrian trails, snowmobiling, and over 44 miles of trails.

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