Tips to Having a Safe & Enjoyable Autumn Season in the Forest

Release Date: Nov 21, 2013

Contact(s): Amanda Patrick

With beautiful fall weather abounding coupled with the arrival of hunting season, the U.S. Forest Service reminds all visitors, both hunters and non, to be safe while out enjoying the Shawnee National Forest (NF).  When planning your trip, please feel free to stop by any of the Forest’s three offices (located in Harrisburg, Vienna and Jonesboro) as personnel are here to help you plan a safe and enjoyable outing.  You can also contact the Forest via phone (800-MY-WOODS) or visit the Shawnee NF website:  

 Here are some seasonal tips to assist you with planning your national forest visit:

  • Bringing or using firewood gathered from outside Southern Illinois is prohibited on the Shawnee.  You can help the U.S. Forest Service and other federal and state agencies slow the spread of emerald ash borer and other non-native invasive species by obtaining your firewood from local sources.
  • On national forest lands within the Shawnee NF, portable hunting stands that do not damage live trees are allowed.  Permanent deer stands are prohibited on the Shawnee.
  • Additionally, visitors are encouraged to observe these simple safety rules:
  • Leave your travel plans with a friend, family or neighbor
  • Keep aware of your location with a map, compass or GPS technology
  • Be sure you are visible with blaze orange
  • Watch for other traffic – on foot, on the road and on the trails
  • Wear adequate clothing to cope with weather variations
  • Be prepared for travel on snow and ice


Administered by the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, the Shawnee National Forest is one of 155 national forests nationwide.As the only national forest in Illinois, the Shawnee offers numerous avenues for connecting with the natural world through its 280,000 acres of varied landscape. Whether your interests lie more in outdoor recreational activities, such as hiking or camping, or include learning about the unique natural and cultural heritage of southern Illinois, the fields, forests and streams of the Shawnee welcome you. To discover more about the Shawnee National Forest, visit follow us on Twitter at: National information about the U.S. Forest Service can be found at: