The Village of New Athens is located within one of the largest state owned and managed sites in the State of Illinois. The Kaskaskia River Fish and Wildlife Area (KRFWA) comprises more than 20,000 acres and completely surrounds the Village of New Athens.
The Kaskaskia River consist of over 40 miles of channelized waterway for power boating and countless streams and oxbows of no wake for the fisherman. Access to the Mississippi River may be gained by locking through the lock and dam 28 miles downstream.
The channelized portion of the river provides the ideal water for power boating and water skiing. All of the oxbows and backwater areas of the river are designated no wake and are ideal settings for the fisherman. Species include channel catfish, flathead catfish, largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, carp, and freshwater drum. All exist in good numbers and provide excellent fishing throughout the year.
The KRFWA includes over 16,000 acres of bottomland forest, providing an ideal habitat for forest game species such as squirrel and white-tail deer. The extensive wetland areas associated with the river provide ample opportunities for waterfowl hunting.