Illinois Recreational Access Program

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) is implementing a new program to increase public access on private land for outdoor recreational activities. Through a three-year grant from the USDA-FSA, the IDNR will lease land from private landowners to provide acres for youth turkey hunting, fishing and boating, as well as birding, outdoor photography, and other similar activities focusing on young outdoor enthusiasts and families.

The goal is to provide more places for outdoor recreation and activities for youth and families. With more than 95 percent of the land in Illinois privately owned, and Illinois ranking 46th among states with public lands, there is a great need to provide additional acreage for public access. With IRAP, private landowners who own at least 40 acres of ground and/or a pond(s), and/or have river and stream access on public waterways can enroll in the program and receive a financial reimbursement from IDNR to allow the public to access these areas for the purpose of youth turkey hunting, birding, outdoor photography and fishing and/or boating.

Information, as well as commonly asked questions, about the program can be found at For more information you may contact Tammy Miller at (217) 524-1266 or via email at