Panther Den Wilderness

Area Status: Open

The United States Congress designated Panther Den as a wilderness area in 1990. It now has a total of 1195 acres, 1081 acres is National Forest System and other portion is the Crab Orchard Wilderness. The primary trail system is the River to River Trail. This trail is well marked and has several loops are in the system. Several other trails branch off the River to River Trail and support the main trail system.

Primitive camping is allowed within designated wilderness. There is no fee for primitive camping, however visitors are limited to camping a maximum of 14 continuous days. Camp and wash 150 feet away from lakes and streams. Primitive camping is NOT allowed within designated natural areas or research natural areas (boundaries are marked with yellow posts)

General Information


Driving Directions to Panther Den Trailhead:

From Carbondale: From Hwy 13 and Giant City Road go south 7 miles to Grassy Road, turn left and go 2.5 miles to Rocky Comfort Road and turn right. Go south 4.5 miles to Panther Den Road, turn left go 1.5 miles to Panther Den Lane, turn left go north to trailhead.

From Interstate-57: take exit 40 (Goreville exit) west take Goreville Road 1 mile to North Lick Creek Road. Turn right, go a quarter mile to Mt. Hebron Road, turn left. Go 2 miles to Robinson Hill Road, turn right on Panther Den Lane and go north to trailhead


Dispersed Camping

Day Hiking


Difficulty Level: More Difficult

Horse Riding

Difficulty Level: More Difficult

Big Game Hunting

Small Game Hunting

Viewing Scenery

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities