Carlyle Lake, which at 26,000 acres is the largest manmade reservoir in Illinois, is home to South Shore State Park. Located on land leased by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the 3-mile-long park is situated on the lake's southeast side, approximately 3 miles east of the city of Carlyle on Illinois Route 50. Managed to preserve its natural and cultural resources, the park also provides recreational opportunities, including small-boat access, five day-use areas for picnicking, a 3/4-mile hiking trail, as well as outstanding bank-fishing opportunities. Observing wildlife, especially white-tailed deer and wild turkey, is another popular activity.

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