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Old 10-18-2016, 10:16 PM   #21
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Thanks for all the suggestions!! It appears that we will skip Chicago this trip. We have two dogs we have to worry with too.
You can expect the problems discussed above at most large cities. The suburbs are so large that any campground is way out on the perimeter and you have either a long, slow drive or a train ride to get downtown.

Washington, DC is similar. One option there is the Cherry Hill Campground in College Park, MD that's about a mile from the Metra station. Don't know about now, but 15 yrs ago you could get a Metra pass after 9:30am for about $5 that let you ride all the rest of the day. It's about a 45 min ride into The Mall from Cherry Hill.

You might do better to just plan on seeing the local sites, I discussed in post #2 and maybe do a loop around Lakes Michigan or Superior. Sounds like the big cities aren't going to work for you.
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Old 10-20-2016, 02:58 PM   #22
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Cook County has started offering camping sites. Some are primitive only but these offer at least electric:
Camp Bullfrog Lake - Forest Preserves of Cook County (Willow Springs, IL)
Camp Reinberg - Forest Preserves of Cook County (Palatine, IL)
Camp Sullivan - Forest Preserves of Cook County (Oak Forest, IL

These sites are relatively close to the city. They will be more primitive than an RV Park or Resort but are relatively new so should be in decent condition.

Illinois Beach SP is about 35 miles north of the city and is a nice spot.
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Old 10-20-2016, 03:16 PM   #23
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As someone else mentioned earlier in this post, stay at the McCormick truck parking lot. We go there every year for the Rock and Roll marathon. We typically stay at an RV park an hour or so away until Friday, then go to the park for Friday until we leave Monday morning. It has 24 hour security, plenty of room. We take our pets as well. Never had a concern, have done it 3 years in a row now. Its cheap too..I think it was $25 a night, and it is right downtown! There are always other RVs there as well...we usually park near the scales.

Oh..no power, no hookups..just a secure spot to park.
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Old 10-20-2016, 03:32 PM   #24
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As someone else mentioned earlier in this post, stay at the McCormick truck parking lot. We go there every year for the Rock and Roll marathon. We typically stay at an RV park an hour or so away until Friday, then go to the park for Friday until we leave Monday morning. It has 24 hour security, plenty of room. We take our pets as well. Never had a concern, have done it 3 years in a row now. Its cheap too..I think it was $25 a night, and it is right downtown! There are always other RVs there as well...we usually park near the scales.

Oh..no power, no hookups..just a secure spot to park.
The OP has dogs, so I'm guessing he's going to want power.
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Old 10-20-2016, 03:33 PM   #25
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I had 7 dogs while there, ran the generator the entire time.
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Old 10-20-2016, 03:52 PM   #26
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There are several campgrounds east of Belvidere, IL, but I don't know much about them. Seem to cater to seasonal people.
I'm familiar with 3 of them and they all have plenty of camping for non-seasonals. One of them is probably only about 30% full with the number of people that have been pulling out the last couple of years.


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There are a couple of private campgrounds in the area but like someone said they are mostly seasonal sites. There is one south of Marengo where I have lived for 20+ years and I don't even recall the name of it.
The one South of Marengo you're thinking of is probably Lehman's. Never been there but drove by it plenty of times on the tollway. Before they added the third lane you could see it as you were driving by. Now they have a big wall up blocking the view and presumably the noise from the road.
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Old 10-20-2016, 04:55 PM   #27
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I had 7 dogs while there, ran the generator the entire time.
While you were gone sight-seeing?
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