Farmland for Sale in Peoria County Illinois
Property review time! This is a property that I own personally. I bought it a few years back as a parking spot for some money to earn a good return while I continued to search for our next family farm. I can’t tell you how much we enjoyed this farm…so much so that we eventually settled on a family farm less than a mile upstream of this one! This land for sale in Peoria County comes with an amazing return on investment and some incredible recreational value for a farm that returns so well! Take a listen to the podcast for an informal chat about the property.
(these are fairly accurate but not perfect…please forgive any errors or inconsistencies)
Hey, guys, welcome back to the podcast. Today’s episode is a property review on 40 acres in Peoria County. So this is a property that I own personally I’ve owned for a few years now, so I’m very familiar with it. It is. I’m here in Dunlap, Illinois, so the farm is super close to me. So it’s just on the let’s see, West side. It’s kind of like Dunlap School district area. So it’s just down Grange Hall Road, if you’re familiar with this area just passed like Kickapoo sand and gravel. Once you cross that Kickapoo Creek on Grange Hall, it is just there on the north. It’s actually Corney Road. It it’s a dead end road that heads north, maybe a mile. And I am back there on the right. So I bought the property a couple of years ago when my wife and I sold our Canton family farm there just east of Canton. And like, we didn’t intend for this to be a long hold. We were just going to kind of hold it while we looked for a farm. When we sold that Canton farm, our goal was to move that money closer to our our home here in Dunlap. And we ended up finding something. I actually found a property in Dunlap that we could maybe build on someday and still be in the same school district. But now that we’ve found something else where we’re unloading this property and I bought it mainly because it was a tillable farm, I mean, of the 40 acres, it’s 27, I believe, tillable.
So it was just a good investment, pretty good dirt. I don’t I’ll put it on the website, but I want to say it’s like a 126 ish productivity index. So solid B plus farm, the soils are good. I get 350 bucks an acre cash rent. So you’re talking just under ten grand ish if you were to farm at all. I mean, of course I don’t because we play on it. So we had some in food plots, but you know, if a guy farmed all of it, you’re looking at just under ten grand a year. So that’s why we bought it. It was just kind of a good investment, a spot to park money. And but what we found is we used it like way more than we thought. You know, I knew that we would use it a little bit, just being kind of close to the house. And the south side of this is the Kickapoo Creek. So, you know, I had that in the back of my mind, like, cool. At least we have a little spot to go to to hang out, let the kids play, you know, play in the creek and run around, you know, while we wait to find our kind of like next next farm, next family farm. And we used it a lot more than I thought.
The tillable is pretty straightforward. Again, that’s why I bought it. But before we move on from that, like it’s it is floodplain stuff. And because the Kickapoo Kickapoo Creek is there, I’ve never seen it flood. I mean, it floods like. It’s the Kickapoo Creek certainly like raises a lot. But I’ve never seen it go over like the little I’m going to say a levee, but it’s not. It’s sort of a levee just on the the south side of that creek, like kind of where we use as the trail to drive in. It is elevated maybe, you know, four or five feet. So it’s kind of like a little levee. I’ve never seen it crossed that the dude that I bought it from said that he has seen it cross that once. I think in the last 20 or 25 years, it was never an issue to me. So that’s why I bought it again. Good productive, tillable land. But the bonus that we got was it did provide way more recreational kind of value than we expected the creek. I mean, so the Kickapoo Creek is cool. I had never owned a property or really on any creek. You know, I’ve always kind of like the Kickapoo Creek in the spoon. I’ve never owned anything on it. And it was super cool. I mean, so the south side of this property, when we back up a tiny bit, the property of the 40 acres again, most is tillable.
But the south side that remaining like whatever that would be 13 acres is it’s either the Kickapoo Creek or just kind of some timber down there. There’s a tiny bit of timber on the north let’s see, north east side. But the majority of that timber is kind of like on both sides of the creek. So the entire south side has is either the creek is either the property line or I kind of own both sides of it. There’s a tiny I believe there’s a tiny portion in there, like one of my actually one of my friends owns a piece to the south and I believe he owns part of the creek. But for for most of it, I either own to the creek or passed it. And so of those like 13 acres, we did put in some little four wheel trails. And you can cross the creek. But I’ll warn you, there’s times where you just can’t, like, you know, maybe with, like, a big jeep or something, but like with a four wheeler or like a ah, gate or like little kids razor, we there were certainly times where we could not cross it for like, extended periods of time, like weeks. I mean, you’re talking, I think, you know, in a normal. I’m finding that it changes. But like in general, that creek, like where our crossings are, it’s about a foot deep which, which the gator can handle, the razor can handle much deeper than that.
And. I just have never risked it. I’m not saying you couldn’t, but, like, especially my kids razor like this water gets up into the seat and on the ranger, it starts getting up over the floorboard. So, you know, when it rains, it’s. It’s. You can certainly walk across it if you’re going to go hunting or whatever. But like, in terms of the four wheel trails, you can only do that like half the year or something, maybe more than that. But those are there it is. You know, I don’t deer hunt. You know, nobody in my family different. So I’m not going to call this a deer hunting property. You could deer hunt it. The chunk to the east is mostly no, it’s entirely timber. I don’t think that dude hunts. There’s just not a lot of development area. So, like, we get plenty of good pictures, a lot of deer, a lot of turkey. So you you could do that kind of like as an added value. It’s not a trophy hunting farm. You’re not going to go and kill a 180 there every year. That’s just that’s not what type of farm it is. But there’s certainly enough timber there that if all you’re worried about is to go shoot a deer and, you know, fill your freezer, totally cool. That would work. There’s a pile of turkey there.
You could shoot a turkey. But again, what we bought it for was the tillable and the creek. So kind of getting back to the creek. It was awesome. We used it all the time. Again, it’s like a foot deep that is through, like spring through, like fall. And what we found in the fall is every year that we’ve owned it, like beavers dam up like certain sections of it and it becomes like a lot deeper. So like I waited out there to get some pictures last week and it’s probably, I don’t know, like thigh deep. So like you’re talking, what, three, three and a half feet deep somewhere in that range. So it’s really cool. And I kind of like stair steps down. I have not fished it like in the fall, so I bet the fishing would be a little easier because when I bought it, everyone told me it had good fishing and I just kind of like. Yeah, I’m sure it’s fine, but like, I doubt it’s that good. So I sort of dismissed it and it. The fishing. There is a blast. Like we did it way more than I expected. It’s again, it’s, it’s weird to me that it’s good because it’s pretty shallow, but like I would say every like 50 yards or 80 yards, there’s a little deep hole. So you kind of know where to fish. And when I see deep, deep hole, like in the in the spring, we might be talking only three feet.
These aren’t super deep holes. You know, my kids, while I’ve owned it, my twins, the youngest, they’ve been 4 to 6. They just turned six. And I was comfortable. Like last year I was comfortable just like letting them roll on the creek. Like even when they’re for like with lifejackets, because there was only a few spots where, like, they couldn’t touch and they knew where those were and they could go with their older brother. But like for the most part, you know, it was a it was a safe creek. You know, there’s no super deep parts. So when I say like deep holes for fishing, they’re not like, I think there’s only one spot on the entire thing where I couldn’t touch. Like, there’s one we call it, like the swimming hole. But there’s one spot they knew not to go to, but like, where it was like, legitimately deep everywhere else, you could walk all of it. And we caught a pile of fish. I mean, the fishing was surprisingly good. Like, listen, you’re not going to catch like £5 or £5 smallmouth. Like, it’s not like lake fishing. Most of the fish that we caught were like, you know, of course you caught a bunch of little tiny ones. But the good fish would, I would say were good fish, were, you know, £2 like was I think our biggest or like a normal, like big small mouth out there.
And I mean, I say that like it’s not a big fish, like it’s a blast. I catch a £2 small mouth and like a creek, you’re just waiting. It was it’s awesome. So the fishing was great. And it’s again, it’s not a lake, so it’s not somewhere you can go like fish all day. Like for whatever reason. I feel like once you kind of walk it, once you sort of disrupt it, so. You can’t like, At least we never had luck. Like, fishing at all day. Like, maybe if you were a cat fishing. So I suppose I should start there. Like we’ve caught, obviously, small mouth. That’s what we caught most of. There’s a pile of catfish in there. Like you literally see them. We’ve never fished for them. We caught a rock bass. There’s carp in there. I’m sure there’s more. That’s kind of what we’ve seen. And or caught. But again, the the bigger smallmouth, you know, anything from like 10 to 16 inches or so, it was just probably as big as we got. But like they were blast, they fight hard. But yeah, like you go to a deep spot and you fish for, you know, 10 minutes or so, 15 minutes and like once you catch one or two, it’s kind of like, I don’t know if they see you or they can like sense the water movement if you’re in the water waiting.
But eventually you kind of like out fish the whole or like disrupt it. So then we’d move on, we’d walk down or up, you know, 50, 60 yards to the next one, do the same thing. And so like a couple of hours and you could kind of walk our entire creek, you know, that that portion of the property and fish it and then you’re kind of done. I mean, we did have luck like turning around and doing it again, but it was never like as good as the first time. But again, the fishing was great. We did it all the time. We never went and didn’t catch anything like creek. Fish just seem a little different to me. I have no experience with that. But like they they seem a little more aggressive. Obviously, they fight harder. I don’t know. It was it was it was a cool experience. The property, in fact, after we owned this, we were like, you know, we want our next property to have creek as well, like the creek somewhat like this size, so that we enjoyed it so much. Like we actually added it to our list on the next property and we ended up just buying like literally upstream like. I mean, maybe a mile. It’s not very far from this property. So we loved the area and found something else close by. That was kind of like more what we were looking for.
A little bigger, a little more trees. But anyways, the creek was super cool. Good for the kids to wait around in. Fishing was good. We also built like a we use it more than we thought. So we ended up building like a little I’m going to call it like a campsite, but it’s like super primitive, like nothing fancy. There’s no power back there. But we found a, I don’t know, a couple acres section that was like. Mildly like the terrain down to the creek was like sloped pretty mildly. So it could kind of like, you know, the kids could play there and we’d doze the entire thing just to clear all the brush, made it even like a little more smooth down to the down to the creek, the top half, which is maybe. I don’t know. 6 to 8 feet above normal creek level. We plant some grass we put in for, like, RV pads, just gravel. Blair and I have a camper, and a few of our friends have them, so we just put those in so we could put those there and you wouldn’t be in the mud and that sort of thing. But we built that. We put in a concrete pad. I don’t remember the size I’m going to guess like. 18 by 34, somewhere in that range. But we built that just kind of like stay out of the mud and sand.
We’d, you know, girl out there and have a little bonfire and that sort of stuff down to the creek. You know, you can only control the creek so much so like we had envisioned like a sandy beach down there a little bit. But like, when that creek rises, there’s not a ton you can do. So that that lower area of like our camp section became like this rocky area that like the creek to sort of deposited there. It’s pretty cool. There is a little sandy area right in front of the right in front of the concrete pad that kind of stays sand like we didn’t even have to bring it in. That’s just like the that’s the soil that’s there. So there is a little sandy area and it kind of transitions to a rock. But it’s a cool area. Kept all the big trees. You can drive right to it like the main trail goes to it. So we use that quite a bit and turned out well. Again. We used it more than we expected we would. The we did plan to dump field out there, so I’ve owned it two years, the first year that we owned it. I bought it too late to plant Sunflower, so there was nothing down there but there were doves everywhere, like they were just there. We didn’t hunt them the first year, but I was I was super excited to put in like a dove plot because I’d never seen that many doves without, like, intentionally planting a dove food plot.
So it was excited about that and it was awesome. Like, so I think I took three or four acres that was in production, put it into a dove field, and there was just doves everywhere. Like I assume. I don’t pretend to be a dove expert, but I assume it’s because there’s water there, there’s sand. I believe they they like that sand. I think they’ll eat that to help them kind of digest stuff. So there’s water, sand and those rocks and then these like huge trees around there. Several of them were kind of like dead. But whatever the reason, they just seem to love the area. And they were doves everywhere. My field didn’t even turn out the best. Like I probably should have sprayed it later, so we’d have a nice clean, like mud or dirt bottom. About half of it was super weedy, but it didn’t like it didn’t seem to matter. You know, we shot a limit opening morning. The rest of the guys set a limit that afternoon. We even shot like, well, all the way through the at least through September until it got cold and we lost most of the doves. But the dove hunting, hunting, there was it was as good as I’ve had. You know, I’ve lived like a decade ago. We had one on Fulton. For whatever reason.
It was awesome. But this one rivaled that like, it’s as good of dove hunting as I have had on like a central Illinois farm. So that was awesome. So if you’re into, like, you know, bird hunting, it’s a cool farm and it’s, you know, it seems like it would be consistently good down there. I did also leave, so when I bought it, it had the lower four acres or so, like on the creek bank area in CRP and. And maybe she’d have left it. I bought out of it just because I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do. In fact, I was for a while I was thinking about putting the whole thing into CRP to work with my dog and like, you know, have some upland hunting area. But even though I took that out to farm more of it, I left about, I want to say maybe an acre like a strip that’s maybe, you know, 30 or 40 feet by like. A thousand somewhere in that ballpark, 1000 feet. And so there’s I just left it in prairie grass to train my dog. So, you know, once or twice a year, I’ll go throw some pheasant and chuck her out and just kind of train her since it’s close to my house. So that was kind of cool, too. There’s just nothing like it’s very remote back there. So it was kind of a cool spot to do that.
But so I used it for dove hunting, used it for upland hunting and. And the creek. So like literally for a for a property that I would say is just an investment property with like good tillable good return, it provided like a pile of recreational value for what it is. You know, it’s not like buying a 200 acre chunk of timber where you can, you know, trophy hunt, deer or turkey. You know, that’s not what this property is. But for being a tillable property with, with good returns, it provides a ton of recreational value. I think we did a podcast or maybe a vlog or something like years back on like the tracks that we like to buy for, like us and our clients are like those investment tracks that offer a little recreational value and they’re hard to find because typically, like the more the better the return, the more kind of like boring the property is. Like that’s generally the rule of thumb. Every once in a while you’ll find one that’s like, you know, it’s still a tillable property with a good return, but like there’s the recreational benefits are pretty good. And so that’s what I would say this is and they’re hard to find. I mean, sometimes you can find a tillable property with a tiny bit of timber that connects to like a huge chunk that like, you know, I would say you could kill a great deer every year.
Those are, you know, properties like that where it’s like, hey, that’s for the most part, this is just a, you know, not even for the most part. This is a property that’s just a tillable good asset to own. But that recreational value is there as well. Similar like when you buy a farm that’s tillable and you could like duck hunting or goose hunting, same thing. This is very similar to those in that like it’s mainly a tillable farm. The only difference is that recreational value here is more like the creek fishing dove, that sort of thing. But keep in mind if you if you do a dove plot, you’re taking away from the tillable a little bit. I also did have a food plot in the back for deer. I don’t know why I don’t deer hunt, but just it’s kind of cool to see him, like, walk out. And I know it’s kind of cool to see them on the property, but that’s it. On this property, it’s pretty straightforward. I mean, I think the the ideal buyer is someone sort of like me. Some of us just looking to park some money, like a safe asset with a good return, but like enjoys some some of these recreational benefits that this property provides. And you know I think you’re going to use those more of your you’re going to use them more if you’re local. So to me, like a local buyer makes a little more sense, you know, North Peoria, Dunlap, Principal Kickapoo Brimfield, that sort of area is all within five, 10 minutes.
And at least that’s what I would envision happening. You know, it’s not a property you’re going to build a house on. I don’t you know, you maybe could get power back there, but it’s you’re looking at a pretty a pretty long haul to get power. So it’ll probably be used kind of like we used it. And I think whoever buys it would love it Like it’s we, we, we enjoyed it again a lot more than we thought. We didn’t expect We, we would it was kind of a temporary parking spot but it was a it was a fun farm and changed what we, you know, changed what we wanted long term because we enjoyed parts of it that much. So that’s it. On this one, if you guys have any questions, give me a call. Shoot me a text message if you want to check it out. Same thing. Get in touch and we’ll go out and, you know, look around or if you’re in the area and just want to take a walk, it’s it’s no big deal. So that’ll do on this one. And I’m going to try to knock out a few of these podcasts today. So we’ll be coming back at you pretty quickly here with a few more podcasts. So thanks for listening.