Boating & Fishing Guidelines

Governor J.B. Pritzker’s Stay at Home Order permits Illinois residents to leave their residence to perform essential activities, including boating and fishing, so long as residents comply with these guidelines. These guidelines apply to recreational boating and fishing on all waters within Illinois, both public and private.

Boating
• Boating is permitted in groups of no more than two persons. No exceptions.
• Boating applies to all boats regardless of the type or size of the boat.
• Boating also applies to non-motorized boats, kayaks, canoes, and sail boats.
• Residents are discouraged from traveling long distances to go boating or fishing.
• Regattas and other competitive boating events that obligate boaters to travel and congregate at a specific and predetermined location and time is prohibited.

Fishing
• Bank and boat fishing is permitted at sites where social distancing and other health directives are followed and anglers possess the appropriate licenses.
• Fishing tournaments and other competitive fishing events that obligate anglers to travel, congregate and fish at a specific and predetermined location and time is prohibited.

Marinas/Boat Rentals
• Marinas/boat rentals should operate with the minimum number of workers necessary to open marinas and harbors to boat owners, and for the operation of safe harbors and marinas to provide refuge for boaters when conditions making boating on open water unsafe and operations related to safety services such as fuel, emergency dockage and sanitary pump-out stations and workers providing tender or boat transportation services.
• If there is a restaurant or other facilities that prepare and serve food, they may operate utilizing the restrictions contained in Section 12(l). This will apply if the restaurants or other facility is located at a lake, pond, or other waterway in the state. Bait shops will also be open for pick-up only as well.
• Boat rentals are permitted.
o Boat rentals are limited to no more than two persons.
o Boat rental businesses shall sanitize the boats after each rental.
• Overnight camping is not permitted at marinas, campgrounds, KOAs, or anywhere else boating and/or fishing takes place.
• Additional guidance for state parks and marinas under the jurisdiction of IDNR can be found here https://www2.illinois.gov/dnr/closures/Pages/ParksOpenDuringCoVID19.aspx.

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