1979 the Illinois Department of Natural Resources signed a 25-year lease
with Central Illinois Public Service Company which designated the 1,775
acre Newton Lake and 540 acres of shoreline as a day use conservation
area. By agreement, recreational activities in the area consist of fishing,
picnicking, trail use and deer hunting.
Illinois Public Service Company constructed an electric power generating
plant in Jasper County southwest of Newton. The Newton Plant
is the most modern in the network of CIPS generating plants. The plant
is fueled by coal and utilizes the latest developments in sulfur dioxide
removal systems. It is hoped that this system will enable the plant to
continue to burn high sulfur Illinois coal, yet remain with environmental
safety standards. When the two generators at the plant operate simultaneously
a total generating capacity of approximately 1,180,000 kilowatts is produced.
CIPS provides electric service to an estimated 760,000 people in 65 counties
over a service area of 20,000 square miles.
Jasper County hosts the largest of three prairie-chicken flocks still existing
in Illinois. While large flocks once were a common sight in Illinois, the prairie-chicken is now an Illinois endangered species. The prairie
chicken has earned fame through the uniqueness of its mating ritual. CIPS has designated approximately 240 acres of its
property as additional prairie chicken sanctuary.
Hunting programs at Newton Lake are available for deer (shotgun
and archery), upland game, waterfowl and turkey (spring and fall archery). Waterfowl hunters must disembark from the east boat ramp.
Contact site office for specific rules and regulations regarding all the
hunting programs. Hunter
A two-lane boat ramp is available at the south access area.
Concessions are available near the lake. The northern ends of the Sand
Creek and Laws Creek fingers of the lake are restricted areas. Sailboating
and swimming are not permitted. There is a 25 HP limit on boat motors.
Lake has a good bass population as a result of a comprehensive stocking
program initiated shortly after the lake was impounded in 1976. Pole and
line fishing only is permitted with a limit of two poles per fisherman.
avoid the possibility of over harvest and thus assure good fishing in
the future, it is necessary to impose an 18-inch minimum length on largemouth
bass and a daily creel limit of three per angler. The lake may produce
some of the largest bass in Illinois.
Twenty-two miles of trail along the picturesque shoreline of the lake were opened
in 1980. The trail system begins at the North Access parking lot. The
trails are opened to hiking, cross-country skiing and equestrian use. A 5 mile mountain bike trail also is open. Motorized vehicles
reach Newton Lake Fish & Wildlife Area in Jasper County from I-57
& I-70 take exit #160 at Effingham, proceed east on RT 33 to Dieterich,
turn right at the stop light, go south approximately 12 miles, turn left
at Newton Lake Entrance sign and go east approximately 3 miles; this will
bring you to the boat ramp. The site office is 2 miles north of the boat
- While groups of 25 or
more are welcome and encouraged to use the park's facilities, they are required
to register in advance with the site office to avoid crowding or scheduling
- At least one responsible
adult must accompany each group of 15 minors.
- Pets must be kept on
leashes at all times.
- Actions by nature can
result in closed roads and other facilities. Please call ahead to the park
office before you make your trip.
- We hope you enjoy your
stay. Remember, take only memories, leave only footprints.
- For more information
on tourism in Illinois, call the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community
Affairs' Bureau of Tourism at 1-800-2Connect.
- Telecommunication Device
for Deaf and Hearing Impaired Natural Resources Information (217) 782-9175
for TDD only Relay Number 800-526-0844.