The Kankakee River is a tributary of the Illinois River, approximately 133 miles long, in northeastern Illinois and northwestern Indiana.  Just over an hour’s drive south from Chicago, through the cornfields of Illinois, runs a particularly scenic and well-preserved stretch of the Kankakee River that flows through 4,000 acres of undeveloped Kankakee River State Park land.

Fly fishing for “bronzebacks” has become extremely popular as more anglers enjoy the pursuit of this wild fighting fish at the butt end of a fly rod.  Kankakee River “smallies” can be caught spring, summer and fall on either surface flies like poppers or subsurface flies like streamers and other patterns.


Big River Fly Fishing (Will Winan)


Big River Fly Fishing (Will Winan) 

Illinois Fishing License

Local Weather

Kankakee River Location Map


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