Find any good woods here and there will be Morels in the spring! Lets start from the South and work up....

Trail of Tears State Forest is the place to be , with Larry Lonik there giving morel hunts, and other info. There is weekend packages available for the lodge accommodations that include Larry's services. This is located in the S.W. tip of the state, SW of Carbondale.

Jonesboro they have an annual mushroom festival and hunting contest.

Dixon Springs State Park

Shawnee National Forest is one of the best Morel areas anywhere! You will find some here!


FIRST ILLINOIS MOREL! Date: Tue, 20 Mar 2001 20:12:32 -0600. Get your baskets ready. Morels are up in Illinois--Southern Illinois anyway--as of Tuesday, March 20. I located my first one of the season today, a black morel about 1-1/2 inches tall, on public land in Williamson County. It was a young specimen naturally, with small, almost-closed pits and considerable growth potential ahead. But growth potential is a meaningless term when describing the first morel. It always comes home with me. The entire hunt today required taking exactly three steps into the woods. Sometimes these things really do come easily. Last year I reported the first morel in Illinois to this site on March 14. That embarrassingly tiny creature last year I discovered by brushing away the leaf litter in one of my hotspots. The morel I found underneath the leaves was the size of a pencil eraser. Yes, that was cheating I suppose. But some of us weaker souls just can't wait. This year I played by the rules and waited for the first VISIBLE morel to show up among the leaf litter. This year, March 20 was the magic day. Did I look for others? Nope. Nothing more than a glance anyway. I hate crushing tiny morels with my footsteps as I walk all over a young patch. I'll let them grow. It'll be a week to 10 days before most of us will be able to make a haul of black morels in Southern Illinois. (Although I'm 50 miles north of Cairo--the absolute southern tip of Illinois--so adjust that prediction accordingly.) This was my first day out looking for morels this year. Nonetheless, I was so confident of the potential to find morels that I brought along my camera to document the first one. Three steps into the woods, and there it was, right on schedule. Click. I will offer one tip as a final note, then quit this egotistical bragging: It pays to keep annual notes to remind ourselves what memory doesn't accurately record. All of us pick morels, and all of us know approximately when to go out hunting for morels--approximately being the key word. But the majority of us aren't positive about when to find morels and ultimately spend too many anxious days and weeks in advance of the season, peering outside, wondering if there just might be--just maybe--a few morels up yet. I got tired of that. Nobody's got a perfect memory. I sure as heck don't. But my notes, which I've kept for seven seasons now, tell me exactly when to find the first morels. And yes, as a matter of fact, I do intend to be buried with those notes. Good luck Illinois morel addicts. Joe M.

morel trip south. Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2001 13:53:51 -0500. Hi Tom, Got back last night from our exploratory trip to southern Illinois. Spring is not as advanced as it was this time last year. No redbud or dogwood flowering yet. Not a lot going on in the way of spring flowers. Saw toothwort and a few spring beauties, some small mayapples, a few trillium, some small bloodroot, and yellow daffodils and Forsythia are in full bloom. There is red showing up in the maples, as their buds are breaking, but not the red and yellow green that was visible across the Ohio river as viewed from the Illinois side last year. Saw one fence lizard, no snakes, no toads, no box turtles, and no ticks. Spring peepers are chirping and softball size gelatinous spheres of developing tadpoles were seen in a small pond. Reading the landscape in the areas that I investigated, spring is probably a week or ten days behind last year at this time. All of that aside, I found my first morels of the season March 30, seven small black morels, about 2" to 3" tall. I found 12 more blacks at a different location on Sunday, April 1. Both sites were on south facing slopes. I visited several other areas, which regularly produce morels but found none. Saw no other apparent mushroom hunters, which usually is an indication that most people feel it's too early. The season has started; there is adequate moisture now and things should start to pop as temperatures increase. Perhaps, barring some 90 degree days, we are in for a more "normal" spring. Whatever that is. Darrell

1st of the season. Date: Tue, 3 Apr 2001 14:17:06 -0500. This is Monte, I found my first 21 tiny black morels of 2001 on 4-2. I had heard reports of others finding a few 7-10 days ago,but the below average temperatures have slowed things down. The rest of this week is forecast above average temps, so all varieties of morels should come on together.I hope everyone else here in Southern Illinois has a safe and productive morel season. I,ll keep you updated. Good Luck!

Morels found outside ST.LOUIS! Date: Wed, 04 Apr 2001 18:50:27 -0500. ILLINOIS 4-4-01. I found about 15-20 little black morels on the south side of a small hill pretty small but they are what we love no matter how small they are. Thank GOD the season has started.I live about 10 mins. outside of ST.LOUIS in Hartford ILL.Good luck to everyone this season, becareful, and dont hunt on land that is'nt yours. David

2001 morel sightings. Date: Thu, 5 Apr 2001 01:58:06 -0500. From: Erin C. I found shrooms in Southern, Illinois :Lawrence county,04/01/01 I only found two little black shrooms about 1" tall, but that is good enough to get me back into the woods

Fri, 6 Apr 2001 20:28:56 -0700. I've been reading the articles on your web site. One that caught my eye talked about whether morels grow or not. I've had a patch in east central IL (Clark county) that I have been cultivating and experimenting with for the last five years. I had some last year that lasted for 3-4 weeks and grew from 1/2 inch to 8-9" tall. Covering them with a bucket or coffee can seems to work really well. I've also fertilized some with Miracid fertilizer (Miracle Grow high in acid for acid loving plants). At first I tried covering them with a jar but didn't see any change. An older experienced 'shroomer told me to use a bucket and it worked. I also have a farmer friend who has a neighbor that finds mushrooms every year 1-2 weeks before everyone else down in Crawford county. I've been keeping track of the dates. They are March 7, 1998: March 13, 1999: March 16, 2000; and March 18, 2001. Every year my friend brings them in to show me. They are usually 1/4 to 1/2 inch tall. He says they grow on a south facing hillside that has a spring underneath that helps warm the ground. Even more unique, the guy finding them usually predicts 2 or 3 weeks ahead of time the exact day he will find them. He's usually acccurate within 1-2 days. Something else I tried last year was a leaf blower to remove leaves that had built up. It doesn't seem to bother the morels but gets rid of excess leaves (might even spread spores?). Sure makes them easier to see! I burned off some of the patch this year and mowed some of it last fall. Now I'm anxiously awaiting this year's season. Good luck and keep the info coming. Jeff H. (name witheld to protect my project)

Morels! Date: Sun, 8 Apr 2001 14:30:16 -0400. More in Illinois. Found 3 black about 2 1/2 in. tall and 4 half free morels in Union County 4-8-01. Kelly

sighting! Date: Sun, 8 Apr 2001 16:48:48 -0500. Hi All, We sotted about tenty little blacks Sat April 7 near Belleville, IL. They were very small. All less than an inch. I also found 3 half free that were pretty decent.I can hardly wait for the season to get fired up!!! E.J.

Mushrooms. Date: Mon, 9 Apr 2001 06:59:44 -0500. Yes found my First three on 4-7-01 Saturday in central Macoupin co. . too dry thought need rain bad!!! Otto

morels. Date: Mon, 9 Apr 2001 07:53:27 -0500. Monte again in Southern Illinois, since reporting my first morels I have found 221 more, all black ones.Our temps have gone from below average to above average and things are really starting to happen. We should be seeing numbers of grays and whites any day now, and I can't wait.Good Luck!

Illinois Date: Mon, 09 Apr 2001 12:07:07 -0500. From: I live about 45 miles NE of St. Louis--less as the crow flies--been checking my regular patches for morels--no luck yet. I think its too dry. Trillium and mayapples just started popping up in my woods this weekend and redbuds have started to bloom. Last year I was picking this week. I'm praying for some rain! Eadie

sighting. Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 10:46:11 -0500. Three grays near Fairview Heights (east of St. Louis) South -facing hillnear creek; Larry

WOW! Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 11:52:09 -0500. Sighting in Belleville , Illinois. Tue April 10, found 40 2 to 3 inch greys in 1 hour. They're everywhere. E.J.

mushroom hunting. Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 20:23:23 -0500. Hi, Jon from Peoria today is 10 of April 2001found 13 grays. The biggest one is about 3 in tall.

Magnolia Report.Josh and I went down in our valley on Saturday, 4/7/01. Checked the one spot where Tomi found a lone black morel last year and a spot where we find deliciosas (little greys with vertical ridges that don't get much bigger than 2"). We've had temps in the 80's all weekend with about 3/10's of an inch of rain. Mayapples were just nubs about an inch tall. Trilliums were about 3 to 4 inches tall with their leaves about an inch across. All signs pointed to the season being about a week away for greys. We didn't find any mushrooms, but anyday you take a walk in the woods with your son is a good day.

morels. Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 08:58:18 -0500. From: Clay B. jackson county southern illinois, my wife and I found 28 huge morels! (we only hunted for 40 minutes) April 9,2001

jersey co. Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 11:17:55 -0500 (CDT). we found about 1.5lbs. of blacks on mon. the 9th need rain bad. got rain on mon. tues. nights going back out today will let you know later From, Dave(aka)Clam

Sighting. Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 13:10:28 -0500. 64 grays south facing in Fairview again(east of St. Louis); Larry

jersey co. il. Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 20:59:05 -0500 (CDT). we found about 1.5 lbs.mon.the 9th but needed rain bad. we got rain monday night &tues.weds. went weds.evening and found about 5lbs. of blacks in one hour and fifteen min. will be back out first thing in the morning. From, Dave(aka)Clam

black morels. Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 21:51:48 -0500. From: Ellen D. East central Illinois, Coles County. Found my first black morels this year on 4/11/01, just before dusk. Has been warm and rainy the last few days. They weren't there yesterday, but they were today.

Morels! Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2001 00:39:15 -0500 (CDT). Morels in Alton (Madison County)! I found about 30 greys, 8 half-free and, glory be, 5 nice yellows yesterday (April 10th). The fun begins! Tracy

First sighting. Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2001 09:01:26 -0500. Found two little whites( I think) last night,4/11. Just barely through the ground, about the size of the tip of my little finger, under a pear tree in my yard in Piatt County, Illinois. Been hunting for about 7yrs. I checked the normal areas and found nothing, and had given up, thinking it was still too early. Came across these almost by accident. It's been really warm here the last few days, and we've gotten a little rain - I think we need more to really get things going. I found your site two years ago and check it religiously to try to gage when to start looking seriously. Thanks for a job well done and please keep up the good work. Mike

morel sightings! Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2001 23:40:52 -0500. This is Erin C. reporting from Southern Illinois, Lawrenceville, IL that is in Lawrence County. Glad to report I found 10 white shrooms about 3-4" tall, and also 72 blacks ranging 2-8" tall. Good Luck to all the shroom hunters. Keep you Posted.

found gray morels. Date: Fri, 13 Apr 2001 09:34:02 -0500. who said friday the 13th was unlucky. i found 5 2" grays in my back yard in centralia, illinois. i hope the woods has more. the bad part is i stept on two of them before i saw them. they are still edible. happy hunting john h.

Nothing yet in Tazewell County. Date: Fri, 13 Apr 2001 15:02:23 -0500. Reports from Tazewell and Woodford counties are none as of April 13th. Thought Friday the 13th would be good but skunked for Easter. Good fried mushrooms for Easter dinner would be nice. May apples are up and ready to spread their leaves outward. Plenty of ants and bugs as well as bees. But no snakes. Another week here I hope. Gary

First of the year 'shrooms. Date: Fri, 13 Apr 2001 18:24:47 -0500. From: Rob & Luann. Found 5 today(April 13,2001) they were small grays, the weather has been perfect up until now --calling for the temp to drop to 50's in day and 40's at nite. These first of the shrooms were found in Armstrong, IL about a hard throw from my back yard in the back 40. Side note my Mother found 3 small graysyesterday behind her house in Potomac,IL . Sure looks like we might have a bumper crop this year if the temps hold up. Last year and the year before I found my first on April 3. Rob Ellett P.S. I coon hunt and have had good luck hunting them at night while running my dogs-Bluticks of course . Good Luck everyone and have a good Easter!!

Sightings. Date: Sat, 14 Apr 2001 15:19:15 -0500. From: On my east facing hill whites up to five inches and greys up to 3 inches are evrywhere. My friends and I have taken about four hundred very nice mushrooms, Two hundred fifty of which are in my fridge. On the west facing hill that is usually VERY productive........Nothing. It's very strange?? E.J. in Belleville , IL

Northern Illinois. 4/14/01. Date: Sat, 14 Apr 2001 18:11:46 -0500. Hello, This is SPONGE from somewhere near Pecatonica. I went out for about 45 minutes this afternoon. 4/14/01. The mayapples are an inch tall, ground is cold, & this is on the south side! I'd say 2 more weeks, & thats if the weather holds. Moisture is there, lets see ome HEAT!!!

Magnolia Report, Date: Sat, 14 Apr 2001 15:54:23 -0500. Vicky and I checked the valley on Friday. Conditions were perfect, but no morels. Bobby N. from Magnolia reported finding one small grey on his farm. Then on Saturday, Our son Josh phoned to say BINGO! He was calling from the patch! We soon joined him and his discovery of 7 small greys - all less than one inch. They were about half way up the hill. We picked four to show to Grandpa since he just got out of the hospital and at one point this winter wasn't sure if he would see fresh ones again. Left the other three to grow a little. Tom

Mushroom Sightings Date: Sun, 15 Apr 2001 03:00:05 EDT. Shrooms! Hi All! On April 12th, 2001 I found 8 small gray's and 72 nice sized yellows in under 2 hours. I found them in Madison Co. Illinois near Collinsville. I live in Bond Co. and haven't seen a thing. Natalie

sighting by carlinville il. Date: Sun, 15 Apr 2001 08:54:01 -0500. From: rex a. searched 3 hours and was only able to find 6 small grays between 1 & 3 inchs. very scattered and very hard to spot.

too early? Date: Sun, 15 Apr 2001 20:16:19 -0700. From: This is Josh from Bloomington. Went to Spring Valley on Sat. the 14th. and didn't find a single one. May apples were just coming up. Found some shed antlers and saw 3 deer, so not a bad day in the woods anyhow.

Morel Mushroom found - Central Illinois. Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2001 08:40:44 -0500. Central Sangamon County, Central Illinois. 1st of the season. We found eleven small gray morels on 4-13-2001. They were all in the same area and grouped in twos and threes in a wooded area on our daughter's property. Now it has turned cold so it will delay the mushroom hunting for awhile. But we'll still keep hunting! Good luck to all the other morel maniacs!! Chuck W.

morel sighting. Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2001 14:18:55 -0000. Found 3 grey morels on saturday on a south hillside northest of Monmouth in Warren County, IL. Went out Sunday and found 5 more. The biggest ones were 3 inches tall. With this weeks cold temperatures in might be another 10 days before we really starting finding some morels. K.C.

sightings. Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2001 20:45:26 -0500. Got 200 mixed grays and small yellows Sunday and 75 mixed Monday. Looks like cold weather will slow them down. Fairview Heights is only a few miles from Belleville. Send some of those big whites and yellows up here!! Larry from Fairview

Illinois sightings. Date: Tue, 17 Apr 2001 12:25:49 EDT. First i'd like to say what an awesome website you have, and i have been checking in to see when hunters would be finding them near me. Went out for first time yesterday, april 16,around 4p.m, spent about an hour looking with a friend. I found a dozen grey morels all around 3 to 5 inches and fresh. my friend was skunked. we have moisture, but could use a little more, what we really need now is the temps to warm up. supposed to be 25 in the morning, but warm up from then on. i'd say they will start to be in abundance after this coming weekend. Get ready!!!!!!!! I am from east central illinois... Vermilion County. Jeff

Illinois Findings. Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2001 07:38:43 -0500. From: Barry G. I'm near Belleville Illinois and have found mushrooms all 3 times I've gone out. I'm new to this area, so I was wondering, how long the season usually lasted around here. The reason why I'm asking is along with the spikes we're finding, we're also finding a lot of yellows. Back in Ohio, we usually found the yellows near the end of the season. We've only found a few gray's and black's. All together, we've probably found about 300-400 total in the 3 times we've been out. Looking forward to some warmer weather this weekend and some rain! Let me know how long the season lasts.

Greys found. Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2001 08:09:08 -0500. Went out for a check yesterday and found about a dozen little greys 4/17 in the spot where I found a lot of yellows last year. First time I've found this many greys - usually find whites and yellows - guess cause they're easier to see. I really didn't expect to find anything considering the weather conditions lately.The "whites" I found under the pear tree really never developed more than the cap out of the ground. Now that I can see more of them, looks like they might be half-frees instead. It's been very cold here (below freezing at night) the last few days without any significant precip. - hoping for warmer weather and rain. A very generous friend at work went to the Lawrenceville area last weekend and was kind enough to bring some back to share with me. There must have been a bunch considering the bag full she gave me. Can't wait to get them home and fix'em. Mike T.

Wed, 18 Apr 2001 13:12:47 -0500. 4-12-01 Hunted in Southern Illinois in Hamilton County. Honey suckle fully leafed, forsythia in bloom as well as red bud trees. May apples fully up & leafed out. Temp in 70's with plenty of moisture. But little luck. Found 3 small grays & about 30 of those with white stem. Figure it must be just a tad early. Last year a week earlier than this found them with no problem. Anxious to hear from others in the area to see if they had any luck. Made trip that same day to Shawnee National Forest south of Harrisburg. They are finding plenty of them there according to the local natives. Jack H.

Morels at Lake Shelbyville. Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2001 20:40:22 -0700. Date: April 18: 2:30pm. People have reported finding greys during the past week. Found my first 10 small ones today -- largest about 3 inches high. We need more rain and sun. Ben

some where near Farmer city. Date: Thu, 19 Apr 2001 20:57:49 -0500 (CDT). It's been a long time coming but I think they finally have arrived. Found about 20 small greys today. Smallest was just breaking ground the largest was about four inches. Rain this weekend should bring them out. Back out tommorrow different location will report back with the find. The A Team

Shroom report. Fri, 20 Apr 2001 16:19:49 -0500. 04/20/2001 John from Bloomington (Mclean county) Can you almost smell the butter frying in the pan? After 4 times out I finally struck gold. The old not so secret patch proved reliable again. The morels are just getting started. 2 thimble size yellows and one grey pushing their way up to the nice moist warm air. I've marked these and am going to watch their progress to see just exactly what they do over a week or two. I've also found Pheasantback in abundance thanks to my sisters boyfriend. I love your site and am thrilled to be out in the WOODS!!! John

sightings. Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 22:47:31 -0500. Got another 100 this evening. That brings me to 700 now. Looks like I'll have enough for the mushroom fry after all. Larry in Fairview Heights

morels in Rockton! Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 09:44:15 EDT. From: Beth M. I've found shrooms in the Rockton area. 5 little and I mean miniscule on April 18th. No mushrooms in Janesville yet but we've had the same weather that you guys have enjoyed the past few days so my mushroom fingers are crossed for a blessed day today in the woods! The mayapples are up about 4 inches and spring beauties and Adderstongues are just starting to bloom. I've got a great feeling about this season - do you agree? You'll be the first to know when the shrooms pop in Wisconsin! happy hunting!

SIGHTING IN ILLINOIS. Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 09:50:13 -0500. I found 165 morels in 45 minutes on April 17 in the Collinsville area. D.K.

grundy county. Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 02:14:31 -0400. From: Brian K. Found my first morels of the season on april 19th. Approx. 2 * dozen little greys ( no bigger than 2" tall ). They should be coming up good after this weekend with the rain and warm nights! Good luck.

Long walk in the woods. Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 06:10:41 -0500. I hunted for 4 hours yesterday around Clinton, IL. I found 2 small grays/reds/browns? Season is running late this year, seem to have good moisture. Your day and date are looking good for this year. I'm really disappointed that I won't be there this year. Sisters 25th and 50th. John R. P.S. I might try to sneak down and hunt that day if nothing else is going on and my dad might want to come along.

I FOUND SOME!!!! Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 14:04:27 -0500. Charleston, Illinois (East Central) Sunday 4/23/01. My husband and I found on our first trip out...... 4 large white sponge, 1 gray sponge, 1 black sponge and 108 Pecker heads!!! Makes a nice mess for the first time!!! Happy Hunting, Wando

Long walk in the woods. Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 06:10:41 -0500. Dear Morel Mania; I hunted for 4 hours yesterday around Clinton, IL. I found 2 small grays/reds/browns? Season is running late this year, seem to have good moisture. Your day and date are looking good for this year. I'm really disappointed that I won't be there this year. Sisters 25th and 50th. John R. P.S. I might try to sneak down and hunt that day if nothing else is going on and my dad might want to come along.

Morels in Illinois. Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 17:02:24 -0500. From: George. I. I picked eighty-seven morels today in Kankakee State Park in Illinois. Nearly all were yellow and the rest were blacks, no half frees. I talked with a group of five people who had picked about two hundred in an hour and a half. The morels are definitely there, but very hard to spot.

Morel hunt. Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 19:16:03 -0500. Knox county Il. 04/22/01 found 23 very small ( 1/4 to 11/4 inches) -- not been warm enough yet, try again 4/24 or 4/25. Jessica, Brian, Gary

illinois morel sighting. Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 00:34:08 EDT. From: TL. Sun. Apr. 22. Saw my first grey morel sighting in the Chicago area, Dupage County. South facing along a railroad track. Just popped out & only about 1/2 inch tall. None of my other usual spots had any out though.

1st morels for me this year! Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 07:07:31 -0500. Went out north of Bloomington 4/22 after two days of rain and 70+ degree weather and found my first morels of the year! 20 little grays and one half-free that had just pushed up through the leaves. What a welcome site! I've been thinking about these all winter!!! Bill S.

mushrooms. Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 14:26:12 -0500. april 12 found 53 keeper grays all around one tree. went back sunday the 22nd found 10 more and enough to fill gallon bag elsewhere. tazewell county. joe.

Morels Found. Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 18:29:53 -0500. 102 Morels found today, April 23, 2001, in Cass County, Illinois. We traveled from Springfield to Jim Edgar Conservation Area in Cass County. Found 3 l/2 pounds of large grays in an hour and a half. I hate to admit it, but the wife outpicked me and she won't let me forget it!! I hope the picture follows the message. Chuck W.

Sighting. Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 20:22:13 -0500. Saw a guy with 2 # of small greys on Sat, April 21. I heard of another guy with 2#, but didn't see them. My 1st trip into the woods was today (Mon, April 23). Went to one of my early spots on a South slope & picked (6) 2" yellows & left (6) smaller ones. I have left roons in this spot before, without anyone getting to them. Found (2) real small greys in back of my house, in a patch that has been producing for about 8 yrs, but has been dwindling. The weather was the best we've had in recent yrs, but turned cool & windy today. I'm located in Oquawka, IL (Henderson County) about 1/2 way down the state, on the Mississippi River. I'm taking my digital camera with me, on the next hunt, so will send some pics. --- Honal

Mon, 23 Apr 2001 22:45:29 -0700 (PDT). I have been finding tons of mushrooms here in the Alton/Godfrey area. Mostly larger greys, and finally some really big yellows are beginning to pop up! Talk to you soon, I'm sure you guys are really busy trying to plan all of the upcoming events. I may try to make it up to the championship hunt this year. Alex

Morels in Illinois. Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 17:02:24 -0500. I picked eighty-seven morels today in Kankakee State Park in Illinois. Nearly all were yellow and the rest were blacks, no half frees. I talked with a group of five people who had picked about two hundred in an hour and a half. The morels are definitely there, but very hard to spot. George I.

sightings. Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2001 09:09:45 -0400. doc reporting from knox county went out for the second time 4/23/01 found 105 greys where i hunt.took pics to put with last years pics.getting ready to go out again cold today,but i don't care got to find them "shrooms" good luck to everyone will report my findings.doc!

Morel report. Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2001 10:28:44 -0500. John in Bloomington (Mclean county). Sunday the 22nd was awesome. While trying to teach the eldest daughter (8) how to spot shrooms she pointed out to me that I had stepped right past a wonderful patch of greys. close to 60. Half frees were everywhere in the woods with many past their prime. Yellows should be on the horizon.

Illinois Sighting. Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2001 20:20:38 EDT. From: Lynn K. Saturday, April 21, 2001: Sangamon County, Illinois: Found 15 yellows approximately 3" in 2 hours. Self-cleaned after recent rain and warm up. 14 were perfect specimens. All found on southern exposed slope in singles, with a couple of doubles. All in mostly elmed woods. Unfortunately, I saw 3 other hunters 10 minutes into my search. Total searched ground was ~ 10 acres. Good luck to all.

Shrooms. Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2001 05:59:44 -0500. My wife and I found about 38 small to med. size yellows yesterday in Fulton County. Going out again today. Walked 4 miles and found nothing, then right before we left, we searched out a small area were we had entered the woods , and found all 38. Could have saved ourselves alot of walking, ha ha. It was great to get out though. Tom

kankakee county has popped wide open. Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2001 16:08:27 -0500. From: kenneth b. April 20/21 - found 142 - 2 inch greys. 168 - 2+ inchers. just started finding tan and yellows. hitting mainly grassy areas - no hillclimbing needed.

more shrooms. Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2001 06:38:04 -0500. Hi Tom, Had a ton of fun yesterday. I found 190 small to medium size yellows in Peoria County, IL. Other people in the woods were scoring too. I found mine on a west bank that was so steep you had to be a billy goat to get them. There were 119 in one small area that was about the size of a living room. Hey, about 40 percent of those were really small, about the size of my little finger. Do morels grow if you let them ? I always thought that whatever size they are, that's the size they stay. Let me know would ya ? Tom B. Washington, IL.

Found 4 pounds on 4/25/01. Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2001 12:25:52 -0500. Morels found. Went out yesterday (4/25/01) near Farmington, IL and found many dead elms; howver, only two trees near a creek bottom yielded 4 pounds of greys and a few yellows. Most were extremely small. With high temps expected through the week, Sat. and Sun. may be ideal. Chris B.

Shrooms! Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2001 14:51:17 EDT. I just went out before work and found five nice yellows in Riverton Il. Well it's a start. Got to find a place nobody goes now. Les S

Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2001 19:32:23 -0500. Greetings fellow mycophiles! Began my northern Illinois morel season with approximately 70 esculentas in DuPage county. All were on southern slopes in partial sun under elms and the occasional ash tree. All were quickly drying out and needed to be harvested! The forecast calls for dry and unseasonably warm weather for the next week. Pray for rain! Jay-bow

They're here. Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2001 07:27:39 -0500. JC from bloomington IL. found 81 mostly greys but some four inch tans. GET OUT THE BUTTER.!!!

Sighting on 04/25/01. Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2001 08:25:27 -0500. From: JOHN L. Sangamon Co. IL. I went out in the afternoon to a private wooded area that a friend of mine owns. I found a couple small half free, not really developed enough so I left them. I continued looking and came across a tree with several clusters of Morchella esculenta, most of which were in prime harvesting condition. As a testament to thourough searching, I found eight initially and thought to myself that perhaps I hadn't looked well enough around that tree. I went back and found another seven! Total time was about an hour, and all were found by the same tree on a southern facing slope. Our soil temp at four inches just reached 50 degrees in the last week, so given a little more rain we should have continued good hunting for a while.

mushrooms. Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2001 18:52:58 -0500. From: I found 73 today April Tazewell county(Washington).Found them all on one hill they ranged from little gray's to big yellows!Looks like we might one week or so left here to hunt.R.M.(Washington,Ill.)

Shrooms are up. Date: Sat, 28 Apr 2001 07:36:14 -0500. Finally found some shrooms!! 3 small greys 1/2" to 1" tall on 4/24/01 somewhere near Pecatonica IL. Next week & the week after should be great. Looks like it could be a motherload year if the weather holds. Thanks, Sponge

Illinois. Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001 19:25:29 -0500. From: gumbi. Went looking for mushrooms in the quad city area of illinois sat &sun 4/29 & 4/30 .We found two gallon bags in two days.Some of them was 6 inches tall.Lots of mushrooms,but too many people looking for them.Can anyone tell me how far north mushrooms grow in wisconsin?

Morel Sighting. Date: Tue, 1 May 2001 09:34:33 EDT. From: Schroomfan. From Ogle County, Illinois . First greys found April 27, about 30 of them. Little over 200 found on April 30, both greys and yellows. It is dry! We need some rain. Using the drying techniques learned from Larry Lonik at last year's festival in Magnolia. Anxious to try the receipes in his books! Good luck at this year's hunt -- we can't be there but wish we could!

sightings. Date: Tue, 1 May 2001 11:13:17 -0700. Josh from Bloomington IL again. Went back up to Spring Valley to do some fishing with the family,and decided to go shrooming before the got up to go. Good thing found a little over 100 yellows, in a spot I've never tried....the woods by my grandma's house. How dumb was that the last few years. Trying to find spots here in Bloomington so I can get out more often. Got to work during the fungi fest, Good luck, looks like it'll be a good year.

Success:) Date: Tue, 1 May 2001 13:51:35 -0500. Date:5/1/01. Last year on this date I found 144 shrooms in about 2 hours, and had been finding them for 12 days prior to then. I just got back with 36 greys. The first of the year,and I've been hitten er hard for a couple weeks. Plenty of heat here.In dire need of a two to three day soaker and then get ready!! Todays greys were small and needing moisture. Tim in Lee County,Illinois

Date: Thu, 3 May 2001 13:21:49 -0500. Shroom report of April 27. Hunted Fulton county. Found approx. 100 yellows. Found 27 at one elm. Suprizingly most were already drying out. Found some 6 inchers. For first time ever found mushrooms under the canopy of young alive elms. Not concentrated just scattered. On the 29th, in Woodford County, found approx. 150. Of these, 40, believe it or not, were grays. All the rest were beautiful big yellows which were already becoming dry. All together in these 2 hunts figured that I had about 8 lbs. Am looking forward to being at the contest in Magnolia on the 5th. Want to talk to others there. Really enjoyed it last year. Jack H.

Date: Sat, 5 May 2001 16:40:22 -0700 (PDT). whew! finally! after five hours of searching, we came across a nice patch with lots of greys and yellows on April 28, in Dupage County, Illinois. We're new around here so it took us awhile to find the right spot, but we finally did it? MB and Bri

shrooms. Date: Sun, 6 May 2001 23:08:16 -0500. Hey Tom, Can't thank you guys enough for your info. this year. However, I was a little disappointed with your updates. I don't know what all goes into you're having to set all of this up, I just thought it would have been a little more consistent. At any rate, I just made it back from Quincy, Ill... Things could have been better, but had a good couple of days. Found 7 or 8 lbs. in the time I was able to look. Temps. were good, but moisture was needed, and they got some this weekend as we were leaving. I hope they still come out for those who are still looking up there. Could be good for you guys in Magnolia. Knock'em dead! Let me know how things go, I am not beyond traveling north again this year.. Although, it is doubtful. Thsnks, Dave

Found!!!! Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 17:46:02 -0600. Hello Mushroom Hunters, I live in Clay Co. IL and went out to my favorite patch this afternoon, I found one light brown morel!!! It won't be long now. All we need is a few more days of warm temps. Good Luck everyone and happy hunting. Nancy F.

ONE BLACK MOREL TODAY! Date: Sun, 24 Mar 2002 17:02:05 -0600. I found my first black morel (Morchella angusticeps) of the season today in Williamson County. It was a small thing, less than 1 inch tall, just poking out from the leaves. But there it was, in spite of the 18-degree weather we experienced two days ago. I always compare the appearance of the first morel of the season to the first ripe tomato in the garden. Morels, just like ripe tomatoes, don't magically appear overnight in massive quantities. Gardeners don't wake up one morning to discover their garden is inexplicably filled with bright-red tomatoes when none existed the day before. Similarly, morel hunters don't walk into the woods one day to discover a forest suddenly filled with morels when none existed the day before. It takes a while, a couple of weeks perhaps, before one is able to go out and collect a basket full of either tomatoes or mushrooms from that place where the first one appeared. Be patient. Some patches fruit a little earlier, some later. That's just how it goes. People always like to brag about finding that first morel of the season, or that first collection for a meal - and I'm one of those people. But the reality of finding the first few morels is that the heart of picking season is still 2-3 weeks after that first morel shows up. Now I can relax for about 10 days until the first big waves of blacks start fruiting in quantity in Southern Illinois, then happily wear out my legs for a few weeks after that. Good luck to all Illinois pickers in the weeks ahead. Treat your fellow morel hunters with courtesy if you can bear it (they're just like you, after all), and remember to respect our public resources. Joe M.

FIND!!!! Date: Sat, 30 Mar 2002 22:02:33 -0600. i went hunting today in union county illinois and found one 3 inch black morel. my wife cheryl found one 2 inch false morel in the same county. my wife will laugh at me for soaking and frying one morel, but at least i'm sharing it with her. good hunting and good karma !!! michael and cheryl

Morels. Date: Fri, 05 Apr 2002 21:32:36 -0600. Hi Tom, Just a brief note before we leave again for more collecting tomorrow. We got to southern Illinois late Sunday evening, March 31. Found the first morels on Monday, April 1, 8 M. angusticeps, on a south facing hillside. Tues., April 2, was sunny, pleasant and in the upper 70's. Went to a different site and found about 25 more black morels, most in the 2" to 3" tall range. Got rain Tues night and a 30 degree drop in temperature. It was pretty cold Wednesday and I wore a long sleeved shirt and a sweat shirt jacket and warm hat with ear flaps down while collecting. I visited an area where I had searched last Monday and found nothing. Wednesday, however, I found 80+ black morels there, most had appeared since I was there Monday. I would say the season there is a week to 10 days behind this time last year. Redbud is just beginning to show some pink and there was no dogwood flowering yet. Mayapples just beginning to come out of the ground, saw no Trillium or jack-in-the-pulpit yet. Yes, ticks are out as are spring beauty, toothwort, and dandelion. Some trees beginning to show light green or red as buds open, but not as much as this time last year. Only black morels found this initial foray, no semilibra, deliciosa, greys, or false morels. Plan on going south again tomorrow. Will keep in touch. Darrell

Morels. My wife and I found 30 really nice blacks on 04/05/02. Sunny afternoon in Southern Il. John & Rosie

FIRST M. ESCULENTA, DELICIOSA, SEMILIBERA. Date: Wed, 10 Apr 2002 23:21:51 -0500. I finally found the other morel species today (4/10), after finding nothing but black morels for a few weeks. This report is from all the way down at the extreme southern tip of Illinois in Alexander County, where the Mississippi state line is closer than the city of Chicago. Here's what I found: a single M. esculenta, still quite young and wrinkled; three M. semilibera (2 fresh, 1 about a week old) and one M. deliciosa (tiny and fresh), all of them on a hillside where I expect to find collectable quantities of M. esculenta and deliciosa in about a week. Of course, Mother Nature has her own opinion about when morels should properly appear, and we rarely agree. Joe M.

shrooms. Date: Sun, 14 Apr 2002 07:10:09 -0500. From: Larry K. Found 78 grays in 6 different patches in about an hour in Fairview Heights, Il. (12 mi. East of St. Louis) on Saturday the 13th. South facing hills and flats where the sun can hit for a long time. Heading out this afternoon!!

Magnolia Report: April 14, 2002. We took a walk in the woods today and checked a few of our usual spots. Nothing yet, but the signs are all there. Undoubtedly there were some there - we just didn't find them. Tom & Vicky

shrooms everywhere. From: Brad. April 13,2002 Went out this morning to southern illinois and found a little over 2 dozen little grays. They seem to be up on south facing hills.

Morel sighting in Illinois Date: Sun, 14 Apr 2002 12:42:31 -0500. Found the first morels of my '02 season. Three close together about three inches tall, under pine trees, top of a rise. The last was on a game(deer) trail, found while crawling through gnarly cover. All looked like they've been up a couple days. I've been out five times this past week, looks perfect but the may apples range from emerging to about eight inches across. Oh, I'll be as specific as central Madison County ;-). Bob

First Find. From: Alex. 04/13/02. I found several here in Godfrey, IL. It's a little dry but Monday should be great!

Central Illinois. Date: Mon, 15 Apr 2002 14:44:00 -0500. From: John. Spent two hours on the sun exposed hillsides of central Illinois, near Peoria on Saturday, then back again on Sunday. Nothing yet, but we've now had 2 days in the 80's.

no morels yet. Reporting from north west Illinois,,, Monday 04/15 /02,,,hit our spots yesterday but no dice.Today weather is in the 80's so it will be any day now.Good news is Asparagus is popping up in my garden,but none of the wild stuff yet.Talk to you when we hit paydirt.Good luck to all and stay safe. Conrad,,,Dixon,Illinois

mushrooms in Illinois. hello all hunters; I just found 15 nice black morel today (4/15/2002)in about 45 mins.. This afternoon on the south side of the hills! I livein central Macoupin County Ill. Good huunting to all. Hope i do not see you in my woods,lol. good luck all, Otto

Central IL morel sighting. Monday, April 15 I found about 50 grey's ranging from 1/2" to 2" in size. I found them in a wet bottoms area around 2 elm trees in Macoupin County. Greg M.

1st shorty. From: j. hey guys and gals nathan from dewitt county ill, april 15 found 8 falsies and one shorty today great spot yet to produce more cant wait to let you know about the big hit!

Morels. Date: Mon, 15 Apr 2002 22:00:31 -0500. Two black 3" morels found in Fox Ridge State Park this evening. East Central Illinois. 8 miles from Charleston, Illinois. Weather ideal--wet and 85 degrees today. Jim D.

Morel Sightings Report. Monday, April 15th. McLean County. Went out after work to check things out. Things looked to be progressing well as of Saturday the 13th, and today the May Apples and other foliage were looking good. But we had high temps and high winds in between, and the ground is really dried out. We need a good soak, and some fairly calm air, or our season may be in trouble. Laurel & Wayne

Mushrooms. Was in S. Illinois, Hamilton County, on April 11, 12 & 13. No mushrooms. Evidently just a tad too early. All the signs are there indicating that it can't be too long. May apples had just popped up. Dog woods in full bloom as well as the flowering crabs. Dandelions in full bloom. Temp was in the high 70's & there has been plenty of rain during that time. Going back this week to try again. Jack

morels. (Illinois) Went looking in McLean County on Tuesday, April 16th and in LaSalle County Wednesday, April 17th and found no morels. thought I would be more likely to see cacti than mushroom the ground was so dry. Was about the warmest day that I can recall hunting for morels. I hope this odd weather does not hurt the crop. Mr. Moe Wrell

Morel Sighting. Date: Thu, 18 Apr 2002 10:44:38 EDT. Howdy All...Found some Morels on the 13th in Champaign County....3 nice greys..none of my buds have seen any yet so I guess I'm the first ... need a good rain and they should begin to pop... Gary

Champaign County IL. From: Dan. I have been out four times in the last week-4/11 to 4/18 and finally found the first black of the year. Barely an inch tall but it is a comming. I have a friend in the Peoria area that found 30 or so black morels on 4/16. Good luck!

Annual Southern Illinois Trip April 13-16. Date: Thu, 18 Apr 2002 14:49:21 -0400. We found about 6-8 lbs. of morels in Union and Perry counties last weekend. Usual sites were sparse compared to last two years - we had to work very hard to get what we got. In some newly found hunting grounds :), we found a mob of blacks, big fresh ones, which was unusual because we've never found them in any quantity this late down in the Shawnee. Other than the big blacks, we found many half-free's, little deliciosa's and finally a few big yellows on the 16th. Weather was hotter than hell to hunt in but of course worth all the sweat, ticks, chiggers, etc to taste them after a long winter. The booty is happily drying in our spare bedroom - where we live in Chicago, too many Eastern Europeans to leave outside in the back yard to dry. We were worried they'd sprout legs and walk away from our tummies and into some knowing Slavs. We're looking forward to the Northern Illinois season to start in a week or so. Happy trails to all! Mama Doe and Unkle Korpse

sighting and capture. Date: Thu, 18 Apr 2002 17:06:41 -0700 From: Tony. 4:00 pm this afternoon, the sighting and capture of 4 small grey morels. Place: Maybe in, near, or around Princeville Il. or Peoria, anyway somwhere near there. Just returning the favor.

Illinois Morel Sighting - 2,373 Morels Found. My husband and I just returned from a 4-day self-guided morel hunting expedition in Southeastern Illinois and couldn't be happier. We drove almost 400 miles to get to our "hot spots", and boy was it worth the trip! I've broken our numbers down by the day: April 13 - After thunderstorms in the area the day before the high temp was about 75; overcast and drizzly. We hunted for 9 hours in flat areas and southeast slopes and were rewarded with 32 half-caps; 293 grays and yellows and 19 big, beautiful blacks. The yellows and grays were small and fresh - ranging in height from 3/4-inch to 3-inches. *****Was saddened by the sight of other mushroom hunters using plastic bags and buckets! Shame! Shame! Let the spores spread and produce future shrooms by using mesh bags!!!!***** Total for the day was 344. Went to Wal-Mart and bought a dehydrator with extra trays to keep the half-caps from deteriorating! April 14- Overcast and light, intermittent showers - high 70s. Returned to same spots and searched for 7 hours. Discovered 178 half-caps; 301 grays/yellows and 20 blacks - total for day was 499. We noticed that the yellows and grays were somewhat larger than the previous days finds; ranging from 1" to 3" in height. The blacks ranged between 4 and 8 inches. Was hopeful that the pattern would mean even larger morels over the next 2 days. April 15 - Much sunnier, hotter and more humid with temps in mid-80s. Found mostly yellows as big and bigger than 2 days previously- finally finding them in "patches" Had two really good finds of 60-plus shrooms in relatively small sections on southeast ridges. Ventured away from our two favorite spots to try an area 1-1/2 hours north and wasted 4 hours by only coming up with two half-caps. Saw several other hunters, one of which said he was finding them "few and far between." But can you believe him? Went back to our tried and true spots and was rewarded with a daily total of 6 blacks (slightly smaller than 2 previous days finds), 117 half-caps and 359 grays and yellows - totalling 482 for the day. April 16 - Final day of morel hunting "vacation" - couldn't resist returning to two previous locations for last day. We were glad we did because several of the yellows were even bigger than the previous days finds- once again in patches on southeast ridges. Also found a patch of half-caps that did not seem to end. Noticed that several of the shrooms were beginning to dry out and lose their tops. The day was much breezier than the previous days. We picked until we ran out of daylight and ended up with a whopping total of 5 blacks, 310 half-caps and 733 grays and yellows for a daily total of 1,048. After doing the math our 4-day totals yielded 50 blacks, 637 half-caps and 1,686 grays and yellows - - - A grand total of 2,373 morels from just two spots. We figure weight-wise our finds were probably between 40 and 50 pounds - - we were truly in "Morel Heaven". Good luck and may you be equally blessed with morel sightings! "Morel Maniacs" Sonya & Harold

Morel Post. Gary, Champaign County, Central Illinois.... Found three greys on the 17th.. need some rain and I think they will pop....

Sighting. First time out for the year. Produced 17 small" very small" grays.E.Peoria IL. It is very dry and hot hear. They were spread out on bottoms of valleys on south facing hills around elms & hickerys. 4/19/02 Someone please do the rain dance we need it. Good luck hunting, Roger

First morel. From: David. Woodford Co. Illinois. Found one small gray on April 18. It was dry like cardboard. The hot weather and strong winds are drying them out. Sure cold use a good rain.

April 19th Clinton Lake area found these and about 25 small grays 1 To 3 inches Ground is really dry, found these toward the bottom land under some cottonwood bark. They are small but they are there. Happy Hunting and think Rain. Bryan K

2 morels found. Date: Fri, 19 Apr 2002 22:12:30 -0500. after a verry cold and wet begining of april and then verry hot and dry mid april i finally found 2 small morels atop a sun facing hill. ive been looking every day for 1 week now and i was getting tired of finding nothing. its too dry worse than last year .im hoping itl rain alot or there will be verry few morels. i found them near marseilles ill. 30 miles northeast of magnolia. in lasalle county seems to be the first ones in northern ill. brandon

Peoria, Illinois findings. Saturday, April 20th. Found 19 Greys, largest 3" in my gravel driveway!!! Find them there every year next to the fenceline. Happy hunting! Gary, Peoria, Illinois

Mushrooms. Morels: Found 12 greys in Schuyler County on 4/18/02. Went today on 4/20/02 and found 30 yellows in Schuyler County West Central IL. Gary and Deb

Found. I went out for an hour on 4/20/02 and found 12 grays that appeared to be a day old. The area that I was hunting in is just south of Decatur, IL. The weather here has turned nasty, but I expect by mid to late week there will be plenty of yellows up in this area of the state. BOB. Ps. when I find the "mother load", I will let you know.

Morels are Poppin'. Todd and his friend George found 114 black/ gray morels on Friday April 19, 2002 and another load of 153 of the same on April 20, 2002 We are located 41* 07' and 90* 30' .....................near North Henderson, Illinois. And we are on a roll.......going out as soon as it gets light........Oh we finally got a good soaking rain last night and the temps will be in the sixties so you know what time it is now!! TODD

morels found. From: COLLEEN. found two small yellow morels April 21 2002 in central Illinois

morels. Date: Sun, 21 Apr 2002 22:19:22 +0000. hey, Bob and Danny found about a pound of greys today in Henry and Mag town. mmmmmmmmmmmmmm good eatin. kathy

Found 4 greys near Monmouth, IL in Warren County on April 21. They were very small. I think they'll be a lot more out about mid week. K.C.

mushroom find! Found 3 greys behind the garage on sunday the 21st. Think i need to hit the woods tonight and see what is going on. Peoria, Ill area. TRES

morel madness. 4/20/02 jason in piatt co. central ill. went out the smorning found 45 tasty morsels in about one hour. hade good rain lastnight all about one to three inches.

mushrooms. Hi, I have found 1/4 lb. of small to medium morels today, Apr. 24 2002. I am from Winneabago county that is in Northern Illinois. I enjoy reading your web. Scott

sightings. 4/21/02 Spring Valley,IL Went out last week and today, nothing to report. A man at Wal-Mart said he had found 20 small greys in Peru,IL....hard to believe. It's raining here in Ladd as I write though.----Josh

Date: Wed, 24 Apr 2002 10:03:29 -0700. morels/yellows in upper grasses(small)-taz county,il

Morels popping up. Date: Wed, 24 Apr 2002 10:42:42 -0500. From: Bill. April 22nd in Dupage County Illinois we happened on a great spot with over 100 morels popping up. Most were too small to pick and unfortunately, someone else found our spot the next day and cleaned out about half of them. It took all my will power not to pick the remaining but we left them to mature for at least a couple more days. I've included a few pictures of some that got away.

Morel Report. April 23. McLean County area. We snuck out of work early and--finally! On this trip out (our fourth), we found 27 nice fresh grays in a limited area, in leaves and under low foliage. Almost thought they were yellows, because they are larger than the grays we usually find in this general area--from 1.5 to 3.5". What a strange season! All our usual indicators (May Apples, Redbuds, etc.) are about 2 weeks ahead of schedule. But we don't care, as long as the morels show up! Laurel & Wayne

Sangamon County, Illinois. From: Kurt. Went out on Saturday, April 20th, to a consistently producing area and got 22 yellows, 1/2 over 3 inches and very elastic. The rain on friday, April 19th, was welcomed and the ground temperature must have been sufficient from the preceding few days.

Found in Piatt Co. Saturday 4/20 found approx. 200 small 1" - 2" greys and yellows. It was a lot of work, but worth it. Hoping the recent rain and forecast for warmer weather will bring on the biggun's. Happy hunting. Mike and Terry

Geneseo, IL sightings. Date: Tue, 23 Apr 2002 17:29:01 -0500. After having three days of 90 degree weather last week, they are starting to come, but are very small-as you can see in the 2 attached photos! Gary

Morels, of course. Date: Tue, 23 Apr 2002 15:19:27 EDT. Just to let you know that I found a small gray(1 1/2") in Elgin, IL. Magnolia should do well this year. Happy Hunting. Barbara

Found in Piatt Co. Saturday 4/20 found approx. 200 small 1" - 2" greys and yellows. It was a lot of work, but worth it. Hoping the recent rain and forecast for warmer weather will bring on the biggun's. Happy hunting. Mike and Terry

Sightings. 4-20-02, The Greys are out, get your stomping boots on because it's pretty muddy, but what's a little mud when your talking about morels. Found about 20-30, 2"-4" greys. Happy Hunting to all, I'm hoping to hit central Il. next weekend. Will check back next week, Looks like it should be a good year! EJ. from Chicago.

Date: Mon, 22 Apr 2002 18:55:48 -0500. found 5 grays in sangamon co. il We had the rain, now we need the sun and heat. gary s.

morels. My wife and I went to our favorite place in east central ill., around Marshall, on Sunday, April 21st, but alas, we found only a dozen of the tasty mushrooms. All blacks, but with a heavy rain over the weekend and with a little sunshine, we will be returning to the scene in a couple of days. We were still able to enjoy the ones we found, served up with a nice steak on the campsite grill. It don't get no better than this!!!! Happy hunting to all and put those plastic bags up and use the mesh type so the spores and re-seed the woods. Ed & Julia

Morel sightings. Found 4 very small greys on April 21 near Monmouth, IL in Warren County. I expect quite of few will jump up between Wednesday and Friday. I guess we'll see-K.C.

Magnolia Report. 04/25/02. The first report of any mushrooms around Magnolia was from Festival Committee Member Dan H. on 04/15/02. He reported finding one tiny gray about half the size of his pinky fingernail. That week Magnolia experienced 5 days of summer like heat which normally would have ended the season and had us all concerned. Fortunately it hadn't really started yet. Josh N. found eight tiny grays on Sunday, 04/21/02 and approximately one additional pound since then. Dan and friend, Bob, gathered about a pound on Sunday, 04/21/02. Josh, Tomi, and Vicky found 107 small to medium (half-inch to two inches) grays and small yellows on Thursday, 04/25/02. Tom's prediction for The Illinois State Morel Mushroom Hunting Championship on May 4 is very optimistic. The weather is staying cool which will extend the season. (Low of 35 degrees tonight) The mushrooms found today were very cold. They were so fresh and clean that we didn't even rinse them. They went straight from the cutting board to the frying pan. I really think that our timing is almost perfect this year. Competitors should find greys of all sizes and the yellows should average 4" to 6".

shrooms. Date: Thu, 25 Apr 2002 21:13:40 -0500. Got about 70 yellas today but they're getting pretty old. Had about 30 fresh ones from the bottoms and north-facing hills That brings my total to 729. My worst year ever!!! The year before last had been my worst year with 875. I hunt for our famous mushroom fry. This will be our 35th consecutive year. Last year we had 80 people, even with the rain, and we ate 1,100 morels in 2 1/2 hours. It sure is a fun way to celebrate nature's bounty. Well, gotta hit the woods. We're expecting about 125 folks this year. Spread the spore; Larry (Fairview Heights Il.)

morels found. found 4 grey morels on sun. the 21st on a southfacing hill in marseilles ill central lasalle county . its plenty wet here but too cold hope it warms up. brandon

Morels found in Will County. Date: Wed, 24 Apr 2002 21:16:43 -0500. From: Rick. I went out for 45 minutes on Tuesday and found 9 small morels on southernly facing slopes. Location was in strip mines 20 miles south of Joliet, Illinois. Can't wait to go out this weekend. It seems that are just starting to pop around this area.

Illinois morels. Northwest ILL near Savanna 4/30/02.I found about 5 lbs today.Most were grays but I did find about 100 small yellows under one small elm.This weekend should be real good if it warms-up like they are forecasting. flh

sighting. Spring Valley, IL- After searching for days I finally found some shrooms! I fond 36 in all. They range from fingernail to 3 in. size. Found most of them on east facing hillside. Have yet to find any in the "usual" spots facing south. The greys were very fresh. The few yellows were starting to decay, and saw others that were to far gone. Good luck this weekend, wish I could get out of work to be there. 4/30/02 -JOSH

morels in illinois. From: Mark. Hello, This is Sponge from somewhere near Pecatonica IL. I found 3 small greys yesterday (4/29/02. They were about 1 inch tall. If we get some warm weather, next week should be good for the start of the season.

Date: april 29, 2002 we found about 30 small greys. the biggest was about 3 inches. these were found in norhtern illinois. where? can't tell you!!!!!!!!!!! becky, jodi & jeff.

found some !! From: gloria. 4- 29-02 central illinois ( logan county ) went out about 7:15 pm , just to say that we went to check. of course the weather has been @#$%*! and did not to expect to find any. found two yellows, 2 " and 3" respectively. we ate em.

Date: Mon, 29 Apr 2002 11:21:39 -0500. Found 6 small yellow morels in Carroll County IL. On April 28 temp. was around 45 degrees. Once we get some warm weather they will be ready. Sadie Q.

Illinois Report. Date: Mon, 29 Apr 2002 09:43:01 -0500. Went out Wild Turkey and Morel hunting this weekend (4/27-28) in Schuyler County and was blanked Saturday but found nine Yellow Morels on Sunday as I was giving up and heading home. Woods are wet, great debris areas, but no sun, very late morels and no turkey! Zettler

Illinois sighting. Morels found in Cook County, IL. Found about 58 2"-3" grays on Sunday April, 28. Found mostly under Dying trees in about 5 different spots. David in NE IL.

cook county illinois sightings. Date: Sun, 28 Apr 2002 22:05:14 +0000. Huge new wave of Dutch Elm infection in Cook County. Most young trees in my spots are infected. Could produce large fruitings in next few seasons if weather cooperates. Holy cow, are there going to be any elms around in 10 years? Have found several okay patches, have left majority to mature. Found 70+ esculenta under one elm today. All are fresh, but are very slow to mature. More than abundant rainfall, but too cold. We need warm temps and low winds. Any opinions if it's going to be a delayed season this year? This is a normal year by my old standards. The past few seasons have been about 2 weeks early. We shouldn't peak for another 2.5 weeks or so. Too early to tell if it's going to be an above average year or not. If we get too much more rain they'll rot before they have a chance to get nice sized. Jay D. Cook County, Illinois

clark county IL. Date: Fri, 26 Apr 2002 23:39:05 -0500 (Central Daylight Time). Clark county is having the second worst year in recent history for the morel hunt. Finds are down by all old hunters. We have no idea what is wrong. Jim

Two Great Finds! Date: Fri, 26 Apr 2002 22:39:03 EDT. Found 36 greys on tues the 23th, and 75 greys in one area on thurs. So far good hunting! Peoria, Ill area. TRES

Illinois. Date: Fri, 19 Apr 2002 13:29:59 -0500. From: Chris. Popped!!!!! 2 years in a row on April 18. Still few, but should be in full bloom by weekend in K3 county Illinois.

greys in danville il.area. From: Alan. 4/27/02. very wet and cold had to look long and hard for 3 hours but found 3 greys. local tavern had 1 lb. for sale, yellows! and greys with more on the way. alan.. tolono il.

Date: Fri, 3 May 2002 22:57:53 EDT. on monday, april 29, 2002: found about 225 nice size greys. a few yellows mixed in. northern illinois , but can't tell ya where!!!!!!!!!!! becky, karli, jeani, and ryan

Morel hunting in DuPage County, IL. Hi. I went out with my family today, May 5, 2002, looking for morels in familiar spots in a DuPage County forest preserve. We checked near numerous dead elms, and crabapples. No signs of morels yet at all. We'll probably look again next weekend. Good luck, ...Dave

Mushrooms. Date: April 30 & May 1 & 3. Found approx. 150 morels of all types: greys, yellows, whites & giants. Almost all at base of dead elms. Location in Woodford county. Found total of 64 at two elms. Ironically each had 32 & both trees were not 100 yards apart. Have had to hunt hard, long & close to find these. A very unusual season. Discovered that an elm just going into distress can be a good producer. Found an elm that was just beginning to show signs of bark deteriation but was still alive with a green canopy that produced 32 morels. Proves to me that even though the tree may still be alive with green leaves if it is under stress that it can produce. Tom, enjoyed the festival on May 4. Thanks to You & Vicki & your staff for all your time & effort. Jack

Sighting. 4/26/02, went out for few hours in Cass County. Found couple pounds, pretty disappointing considering what I have gotten in the past. I think next week should be better if we get some warm weather which is in the forecast. I live in McLean County where I hear people are finding them but I haven't had any luck. Need sun!! Jason

found 52 may 1 15 minutes from chicago herb

Date: Sun, 12 May 2002 07:01:38 -0500. Hi, just found the first yellows of the season today here in northern IL. 3 small ones but they were good . Happy hunting from Boone County. Lori

Subject:morels-schaumburg. Date: Fri, 17 May 2002 21:37:23 -0500. May 12th. found ten next to I-90 in Schaumburg, il... Can one find Morels in late May or June in Il.? I'm going to try Rockford area .I have yet to find the mother load in this area.... Why are there no further listings after the morel mania championship??? Bill

Subject: report. Date: Tue, 14 May 2002 14:32:25 -0500. We found 180 morels on Friday, May 10th. They were a variety of the dark and light. Also a variety of sizes. We ran out of time so I am sure we left some. This was in Northern Illinois. However, I can't tell you exact location because it wasn't far from Becky's house! :) Laura & Mark

Subject: Bingo! Date: Mon, 13 May 2002 21:49:54 -0500. From: Martina. IfoundsomeIfoundsomeIfoundsomemorels !!!! 20020513.1740 Yippppppeeeeee !!!!! Hallelujah, thanks be to God !!!!! I found (FINALLY), after much searching, six beautiful morels this evening. The sun finally came out late this afternoon (after a 3-inch semi-continuous rain over the weekend), and the temperature actually approached 60 degrees, so I thought I'd give Mt. L. one more try. After all, it is the highest point in Kankakee County (I think it towers something like 50 feet above the surrounding farmland), so the poor little critters shouldn't have needed to wear their life preservers up there, or so I thought. I had been there several times in the last month, watched the Dutchmen's breeches, Phlox, Trillium, May apples, and wild ginger blooming, and thoroughly enjoyed the ups and downs through the woods, but not until today had I found a single morel in Kankakee County. A horizontal log a couple of feet above ground looked promising, and the multiflora roses tangled around it looked like a good sign, so I went over and THERE THEY WERE! Three lovely morels all in a clump, and a couple of feet away, a single one. It was another hour or so before I found the next two, but all combined, they weighed close to four ounces (got the electronic postage scale out). The four largest were between four and a half and five inches tall, and almost five inches around at the base of the caps. I couldn't wait to give one of the prettiest to Wilma, since she's heard me talking about these mythological creatures for the last month. Randy and Marj are each going to get one, and the rest I'll save for the spores. I couldn't be more pleased-feel like frolicking around like a wood nymph (Dryad--as in Dryad's saddle, I think; I'll have to look it up.) Certainly a mountaintop experience at Top of the Mountain (that's what Joe called the property; he'd given me permission a few years ago to go skiing up there, and I figured he wouldn't mind my being there now, especially since his ashes were scattered there last week). Tom, thanks again for your guidance. God Bless! 8)M

Magnolia Report: Tuesday, 05/21/02: Don't give up yet! The cool weather is helping extend our season. I always hear hunters say, "all we need now is a few warm days and they'll really be poppin". Well, the warm weather does bring them out fast . . . then the season is over because they all come at once. The cool weather may delay their start, but, in my opinion, it means more morels. Vicky found a large one in our yard on Sunday, 05/19/02. It was on a north facing slope near the top of the slope and near a small dead elm. She wasn't really hunting, she was gardening. True maniacs never stop looking. Undergrowth is high and thick, but the morels are also. Sweep the top of the foilage to reveal what's lurking beneath. Points north should do well until the weather gets hot.

Found some: Tue, 24 Apr 2001 16:35:10 -0500. From: rkeir. April 21,22 & 23.... Found 94 gray yellow mix in Macoupin county while turkey hunting. Didn't find any big yellows yet but I'm going back next weekend. No turkey but found a shed and a whole carcas 12 pt.(NICE).

Date: Mon, 24 Mar 2003 10:40:29 -0600. Subject: First morel...again. Tom, Here's a digital photo of my first Illinois morel of 2003, found March 19 in Williamson County, about 50 miles north of the southern tip of Illinois. As you can see (with some difficulty), the morel is so ridiculously tiny it begs the question: "What constitutes a legitimate morel mushroom?" Yes, that tiny blob perched atop the crumb of soil is a morel. Or it will be anyway. Measuring just 3 millimeters, it's the smallest morel I've ever seen in the wild. Twenty of them would fit inside a thimble. Here's where the legitimacy of proclaiming "morels are up!" becomes an issue. For some of us restless, sleepless types, it isn't enough to wait until morels are actually visible above the leaf litter before we head into the woods. As the late snows finally melt and buds on trees begin to split open and vegetation begins to crawl out of winter, we just KNOW there must be tiny morels out there, almost ready to poke above the forest floor. And so we do something, well, something immorel--pun intended. We tip-toe toward a place where our beloved mushrooms will eventually grow , crouch down, then resort to the ultimate picker's crime: brushing aside a few leaves. That's the story behind this year's first morel; I cheated. I admit it. And I don't claim that this report represents the first morel in existence in Illinois. This happened to be the first one I saw after brushing aside a few handfuls of leaves. What it tells me is this: Morels are developing as fruiting bodies right now (putting to rest my annual winter fears), and within days I'll be able to legitimately harvest enough for a meal. I'll leave it at that. Joe M. Congratulations Joe! Vicky says, "you're terrible", but I understand. And, I've seen her harvest a few wee ones also.

From: "Mikey". Date: Mon, 24 Mar 2003 08:26:52 -0600. I found my first morel of the year on 03/23/03 A black/brown morel. I live in elizabethtown IL. but I found it at Cave In Rock IL. about 13 miles from Elizabethtown IL. only found one though. in pine needles, Real small about 2" tall

Date: Thu, 27 Mar 2003 11:29:59 -0800 (PST). Subject: 1st morel of 2003. Here is a picture of my first black morel of 2003.For any of you non-believers out there I took the photo with a 2003 Illinois quarter. It was found Mar. 26 in Fayette county,Il. BARTMAN

Date: Fri, 28 Mar 2003 10:01:35 -0600. Subject: A few small blacks... Tom, Here's a note to follow-up on the progress of the season in southern Illinois as of March 28. I returned to the spot in Williamson County where I found my first morel March 19 (that minuscule speck I photographed next to my business card) and found two small black morels poking above the leaf litter this time. Both were a mere 1 inch tall, yet they were actually visible--no digging under the leaves this time. This find corresponds with the March 24 report from "Mikey" in Elizabethtown (roughly 50 miles south and east of Williamson County). The small morel he located a few days earlier seems to resemble the size of the morels I found a bit farther north on March 28. We're finding the first few loners, so to speak, that always pop up a bit earlier than the rest of the crop. At this point, there's still no urgent need for anyone in Illinois to race out into the woods to find morels. Sure, folks in southern Illinois will be able to scrounge up a few morels during the next few days. But I doubt there is a site anywhere in our region that could somehow, magically produce a basket full of big morels right now. The red bud trees are just beginning to show a bit of burgandy-colored haze on a few trees. I saw the first May apple plants emerging as cone-shaped umbrellas from the forest floor a few days ago. Serviceberry is suddenly in bloom. Those three indicators, among many others, tend to correspond with the occurrence of the first black morels of the season in southern Illinois. Keeping notes every year has been a tremendous benefit. I did locate a few fresh, young false morels in Jackson County on March 24. (There are a number of species we commonly describe as "false morels." These were Gyromitra fastigiata.) If I were to pull out a crystal ball and predict when morel hunters ought to head into the woods of southern Illinois with expectations of actually finding enough morels for a meal, I'd guess that time will come in about one week. Joe M.

From: ".monte J. Date: Sat, 29 Mar 2003 11:15:49 -0600. Subject: sightings. I found my first 5 black morels of the year on 3-27-03. They were 3/4" to 2" tall growing on a south facing slope in Jackson County, Il.

Date: Sun, 30 Mar 2003. Subject: 16 small blacks. Found 16 small blacks today in Rosiclare, Ill. All were through the leaves, no brushing leaves back. All were approx. 2" tall. Should be better next weekend for sure! Brenda and David

Date: Mon, 31 Mar 2003. Subject: followup. I returned to the spot where I found my first black on march 26. Despite the last couple nights of cold weather - upper 30's, I found 8 more yesterday,3-30.they were smaller than the first one,from the dropping temperature I assume.One more week @ I'll be eatin' good! BARTMAN

From: monte. Date: Tue, 1 Apr 2003. I found 11 more small blacks on a South slope on 3-30-03. The woods still don't look ready. Give it 2 or 3 warm days and nights in a row and we'll get some in numbers.

Date: Tue, 1 Apr 2003 21:47:09 -0600. Subject: illinois morels found. Hi Tom, Michael Kuo and I found approximately 30 small blacks 1-3 inches high this morning (April 1st) in Shelby County, Illinois. I'm looking forward to meeting you in Magnolia. Unfortnately, I won't get to go on the hunt because I'll be gathering samples from hunt participants for our Morel Data Collection Project. I'll be one jealous old man, to be sure, but it will be a pleasure to see what everyone finds. Best, Bob Zordani

Date: Wed, 02 Apr 2003 10:59:15 -0600. Subject: southern Illinois update. It's time for everyone who knows where to find black morels in southern Illinois to go out and at least glance at those potential sites. Right now, the early patches of black morels are ready for picking in the southern part of the state. But, bear in mind, they're not up everywhere yet. Don't be disappointed if you get skunked at a place you expected to find black morels. Wait several days, then give it another shot. On April 1 I found 69 blacks in Jackson County on a south-facing hillside in a mixed hardwood spot that always produces morels a bit earlier than other sites. As example, a site just a couple of hundred yards away (coincidentally, also on a south-facing slope) hasn't produced a single morel yet, although that spot always produces hundreds of black morels every spring, typically a week or more after the first site has matured and started to deteriorate. The condition of the morels April 1 was excellent. Sizes ranged from 2-5 inches tall, with all of them fresh and, of course, delicious. Joe M.

Wed, 2 Apr 2003 20:52:57 EST. Subject: sightings. Date: 4/ 2/ 2003 Destiny in Bond County, IL found 5 Baby greys the size of your pinky fingernail. Good luck shroomers!!!!

Date: Mon, 07 Apr 2003 16:36:30 -0500. Subject: shrooms. 70 small grays and 4 half frees today in Fairview Heights, Illinois. I've attached a pic of one in my yard. Larry

From: Dianadiana. Date: Mon, 7 Apr 2003 21:06:39 EDT. Subject: morels in madison. 7April, I found twenty grey mushrooms about 2" tall today in Woodriver , Madison county. can't wait until tomorrow.

From: Vicki. Date: Wed, 9 Apr 2003. Subject: Found 2-IL. I found 2 morels on April 7, 2003.

Date: Wed, 9 Apr 2003. Subject: 1st Morels April 8th. Found my 1st of the year, 11 in about an hour on Apr 8. New Athens, St. Clair Co. Illinois. Bob

Date: Tue, 8 Apr 2003. Subject: Morel Sightings. Leonard, Frog, Rat and I (Sis) went chasing morels in Jackson Co.IL. on April 5th. We caught 138 black morels on southeast facing slopes on wild cherry and white ash trees. Mayapples were 10" tall, lilac bushes were budded but not open. Bloodroot, dandelions, violets, cranesbill and ground ivy were all bloomed. That evening we roadtripped to Perry Co. but its still to early there . I guess a few miles makes a big difference. Anyway we have pictures to prove we found em, which will be on our morel museum boards. Anyone with articles or pictures can bring them to Jonesboro's Mid America hunt(April 19th&20th) or Magnolias Illinois State Hunt( May3rd) or Babes Tap Humungus Fungus Festival in Coal City (May 10th) or Boyne Citys National Hunt (May17th). And we will put them in the Morel Museum. Remember to always carry a mesh bag and always get permission to hunt on private land. See ya soon. The Hillbilly Gustaupo

Date: Thu, 10 Apr 2003 21:27:07 -0500. Subject: morels. My first 5 black morels this year. Fox Ridge State Park, Coles County, near Charleston, Illinois. 5:30 pm, April 10. >From 1 3/4 inches to 2 1/2 inches tall. After five days of very cold weather, I was surprised. Jimmy D. Hi Jimmy, Congratulations, but, be careful in State Parks. You may want to read the reply to Porter below.

Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2003 08:44:51 -0500. Subject: Hunting morels. Tom, Can you suggest any good areas to look for morels in Kane and surrounding counties in Illinois? Porter R. Thanks. Hi Porter, One of the problems with living in Illinois is that it is illegal to hunt mushrooms in state parks or forest preserves. Many people do it anyway and many rangers turn their head. Surrounding states such as: IA, WI, IN, and MI do allow the harvest (not commercially) of fruits, nuts, and mushrooms. There is a bill in either the Illinois House or Senate to change the law, but I haven't heard of its passage yet. So, if you don't have access and permission to search on private land, be discreet or head north to Wisconsin. You may also want to read the reply to Don below. Tom.

Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2003 09:24:34 -0500. Subject: lost. Tom i live in park forest ill I have going to the morel hunts in magnolia for the last 7 years and have been hunting the little critters for about 45 years . it seems i just can't find them like i use to. sure could use your help. Don, thanks. Hi Don,

One of the problems with the modern day is urbanization. Countless people have told me that their former honey holes are now subdivisions. Not just around Chicago, but even some of the smaller cities too. The only thing I can suggest is head further out into the rural areas. And, get permission.

One of the problems in getting permission is with the legal system. People file lawsuits over the smallest things. This makes landowners wary of giving permission to anyone for access to their land.

I'm not a lawyer, but, as I understand it, in Illinois there are three levels of liability that a landowner has. The first and greatest is when the landowner charges someone to use their property. The example would be a hunting lodge that charges for use of the land for hunting purposes.

The second level of liability is when the landowner allows someone to use their land. They are still liable for accidents and injuries, but not to the same degree.

The third degree of liability is when someone uses the land without permission as in trespassing. Believe it or not, the landowner is still somewhat liable, to a lesser degree, but he or she can still be sued. The lawyer's fees alone, even if the landowner successfully wins the the suit can cause any landowner to think twice about giving permission. And because they can even be sued by trespassers, many don't think twice about prosecuting them.

My father had nine children and over 30 grandchildren. And, we all love mushrooms. He purchased 40 acres of wooded land specifically for the family to hunt mushrooms on. A state highway runs right through the middle of the 40 acres. I don't know why, but hundreds of people thought no one would mind if they stopped to hunt mushrooms there. Rarely was there enough mushrooms to share amongst the family, there certainly wasn't enough to share with the public. He didn't think twice about prosecuting anyone he found on the land. And, with the price of mushrooms being what it is, he viewed it as theft. The courts agreed and the fine is approximately $250 for criminal trespass!

We've heard the excuse, "I didn't see any NO TRESPASSING signs, so I thought it would be okay". When we point out the obvious sign, usually less than 50 feet from where the trespasser's car is parked, the reply is "Oh, I didn't see it". In Illinois, the landowner doesn't need to post signs on the property. It is up to the individual on the land to know who the landowner is and have permission.

As mean and ornery as Dad was when it came to trespassers, I did witness him give permission to one person to hunt mushrooms on his land. That person was the one (and only) person to ever have the courtesy to stop and ask for permission!

Often when someone is taken to a piece of property with permission, it then (in the guest's mind) becomes the guest's private spot. The following year, he brings someone new, who later brings someone else. Pretty soon there are ten people who think they have permission when the landowner has given permission to only one person.

Another rule we live by is to share the bounty with the landowner. We always offer them half of what we find. We've never been told not to come back.

Back to your original question about there being fewer mushrooms. The use of mesh bags such as our Shroom Sack or Larry Lonik's Spore Boy is a relatively recent practice. For years mushroom hunters have been using plastic or paper bags to gather mushrooms. They've also been gathering the spores and taking them home to either rinse down the drain or discard in the garbage. It makes much more sense to leave the spore in the woods to perpetuate the patch. So, while past areas are diminished, maybe by using mesh bags, we're creating new ones.

Another reason you're not finding as many as you used to is that 40 to 50 years ago the Dutch Elm Disease made its appearance. With all the elms dying, morel hunters had a field day (for several years). We may never see harvests such as then again.

Sorry for the lenghthy disertation, but it's important information and hope this helps, Tom

Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2003 18:09:48 -0700 (PDT). Subject: Greys are up ? Hey Tom, Here is a photo of some small greys I found today in fayette co. Season is moving on well here, I found 164 blacks also today. Some of them were showing a little age- TO MY SURPRISE!! Good luck everybody!!!! BARTMAN

From: Tntscan. Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2003 00:38:23 EDT. Subject: where to hunt. i live in marion ill.which is in williamson county. i'm new to the area and have no idea where to hunt. i love morels and have missed 2 years of them.if someone knows where to hunt them here please let me know. went out today and found none. really desperate to find some.

04/14/03 Phone report: Mike H. of Kickapoo, IL phoned to say that he and the boys found some small greys in Peoria County today.

From: SFR. Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2003 22:18:39 EDT. Subject: Fayette Co., Otego Twp. found 6 small blacks on Thurs. & 4 brand new whites on Fri. Walked 2 1/2 hrs both days. Plenty of warm weather. Need rain. Could be a great season.

Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2003 23:30:43 EDT. Subject: Illinois Sighting. Neil and Craig from Athens, IL in Menard county have found our 1st grey's of the year. The "May-Apple" theory has seemed to apply so far in helping us locate the shrooms. We found over a dozen today and marked a few other patches where we spied some the size of thumbnails. As long as no poachers come by, we'll be alright. For now we've at least got enough for a taste. Supposed to be 85 degrees tomorrow -- look out, they're going to be popping all over the place...

Date: Mon, 14 Apr 2003 21:13:18 -0500. Subject: sighting. Went out on Monday and found 30 greys!!! Will be sending plenty more sightings within the next few weeks. Big Sal and CL. Edwardsville, IL

Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2003 11:35:26 -0500. Subject: Springin' Up. Hey all, I found 87 on the 9th and 75 on the 10th. St. Clair Co. The 75 were a new patch I found, always cool. Still seems early as it is a long walk between findings. Bob R.

Date: Tue, 15 Apr 2003 11:27:08 -0500. Subject: morels. April 15, 2004. Been finding 15 to 25 grays every outing till today. Im hunting in perry co. Il. need a good rain to really turn them on here. Looks like wed. will be the day of rain so good friday indeed will be a good friday. Good luck to all. Morelhunter18

Date: Wed, 16 Apr 2003 08:22:30 -0500. Subject: Found the first "small" gray morel! Hi to all the dedicated shroomers from Richland County, IL.. This year has been an unusual hunting experience. Usually our family woods can be predicted from the first black morel then the peckerheads,whites next and finally the gray morels. Unless the deer have learned to tip toe I am finding the last expected shroom, first! I really enjoyed this mushroom sight. Good luck to everyone. K.L.

Date: Wed, 16 Apr 2003 13:10:27 -0500. Morel Sighting. Found twenty morels near Belleville, Illinois, Wednesday, April 15, 2003. Conditions are very warm and dry, but rain is predicted for today and for tomorrow. Mike

From: Sally. Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2003. Subject: Hello from Kickapoo. Mike wanted to say HI! and confirm the Morel Mania date. We are hoping to come up for the day. No First Communion's this year. I see that you logged in Mike and the boys' sighting in Peoria County. I witness the event and it was very special. Mike (of course) saw the first one, then Josh (10) saw his own grey one, and then Matt (7) saw his very own tiny one. All three guys (in a matter of seconds) found their own morel. I guess it is true that the acorn doesn't fall far from the oak tree (or should we say fungi spores don't drift to far from the morel).

Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2003. Subject: Annual Southern Illinois Morel Hunt April 12-16th. This was the best year ever!!! Almost all old wives tales were found true - we found them on ridges & on bottoms, under elms, ashes, sycamores and dead trees. Oaks were just starting to leaf out and may apples were up and blooming. We probably picked about 700-800 mushrooms, easily over 15 pounds! We found all species of morels - half frees, blacks, little deliciosas, big grays and yellows. Blacks were everywhere we looked including places we regularly hunt and have never found them before. We did most of our hunting in Union and Jackson Counties but did get some in Perry County, too. The only old wives tale that we did not find to be true was that you need rain to find morels - we found fresh ones everyday everywhere we looked and it bone dry, high-fire risk dry in Southern Illinois right now. The region desperately needs rain but so does Chicago, so don't believe that rain absolutely has to happen for morels to be there in any numbers. My husband built portable drying racks for our trip and they were on the driveway when I got home to pack up! They worked just great, so most of our beauties were already dried and ready for storage by the time we got home (He had a big bow on those racks and I ran in the house to tell him how much I loved him when I saw them there! He is a keeper, for sure;). On a much sadder note, we both were heartbroken to read about Larry Lonik this morning. We met Larry at Trail of Tears Lodge and hunted with him for a couple of days after the Morel Heaven Weekend that year. Every time we saw him afterwards, he was so genuinely happy to see us and was just an absolute dear person, truly one of those characters that God broke the mold for afterwards (ya'll know the type, everybody is blessed to have a few in their lives). Larry taught us a lot about mushroom hunting and we never would have come home with this many 'shrooms without his valuable insight nor would we ever continue to find new places to hunt without his wisdom imparted. My husband and I will miss him greatly and we will always keep on hunting with Larry in our hearts and his wisdom on our fingertips. Still looking forward to the Northern Illinois season, just with some teary eyes and heavier hearts.....Mama Doe and Unkle Korpse

Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2003. Subject: MORELS!!! Today the 17th of April my husband and myself went out to our favorite hunting grounds we found 153 total in less than 2 hours.My husband being the awesome hunter he is found 112 of them they were everywhere!!!!!smallest being 1/8" upto 4" all greys Montgomery county,Illinois.Can hardly wait until tomorrow.Happy Hunting Randy and Marsha

Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2003. Subject: morels found. 4-17-03 We found 6 small greys today. We need some heat to get them to really pop! We found them in Iroquois County 6 miles from Indiana state line. See ya in Magnolia for the big hunt! The Pentecosts

From: Barry. Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2003. Subject: Morels near Pinckneyville. My son and I found about 100 greys and yellows. We may have been a day or two early though. We got a decent amount of rain on Wednesday, so if we get some warm weather, they SHOULD be everywhere. One thing I've noticed about the 'shrooms in Pinckneyville. They are loaded with microscopic bugs! They are a pain in the butt to clean! Looking forward to a big weekend!

From: Michael. Date: Tue, 2 Apr 2002. Subject: grey morels. greetings from Springfield, Ill.! I found my first greys yesterday. 27, to be exact. They were VERY small. The rain was a good thing. Hope it gives them some added size in the next few days.

Date: Fri, 18 Apr 2003. Subject: Mushroom, one. Regrets to Larry's family!! Such a sad day! First mushroom found by our group. Peoria County, One little guy, less than an inch. We found it in a new spot by an old apple tree. Usually our first found are by elms. Quite the surprise, happy hunting. The season has begun! TRES

Date: Sat, 19 Apr 2003. Subject: Morel Report. Hello, just reporting that I found my first 109 Morel's of the season in 2 hours yesterday the 18th... In Madison county IL in Edwardsville.. Mostly greys, but a few nice blacks in the mix. Looks like weather is gonna be great this weekend, good luck fellow hunters!! Later, Aaron

Date: Sat, 19 Apr 2003. Subject: Found 26 small little grey Morels. Just wanted to report that we found 26 small little grey morels in Tazewell County, Illinois 4/19/03. We found them mostly on the South sides of trees in moss area. Largest measured 2 inches, smallest 1/2 inch. Were very hard to find. Brad.

From: Chris. Date: Mon, 21 Apr 2003. Subject: IL Sighting. Went out and found 43 greys and yellows on Friday. We went back out on Saturday and found blacks, greys, and a yellow. The total came to 125 on Saturday. I have enclosed a picture of Saturday's find. Big Sal, Fat, and Yellow Smelly. Mattoon, IL

Date: Mon, 21 Apr 2003. Subject: Liability and Illinois Landowners. First let me express my deepest sympathy. I was fortunate enough to have shared a couple of pops with Tree a few years back in Magnolia. Such a fine and knowledgable man he was. He will be greatly missed, but the legacy he leaves towers over even his own physical stature. Disclaimer: I am not an attorney (nor do i appreciate many). Fact is, if a landowner allows you to enter his property for recreational purposes, the duty of care owed to you is no more than that owed to a tresspasser. Check it out: The DNR will mail you a small pamphlet which can explain the Act to landowners(an extremely valuable tool in my experience)-the address is at the bottom of the linked page. No morels up this way yet, but i think i smell one... Bugs, Kane County

Date: Mon, 21 Apr 2003. Subject: Re: The Mushroom Man. Reading my e-mail Sunday night. Really a shocker! Sent Maggie Rogers a short informational message. She and I would appreciate any additional information. I'm heading for the woods. Gray esculenta are fruiting around some elms and ash in central Illinois. Got about 2.5 lbs yesterday. Darrell

From: rburton1586 Date: Sun, 20 Apr 2003. Subject: morels in cass county. Hey Tom......Found about 48 today (4-20) in cass county Illinois. Mostly grey....but a few yellows. Nice mess for first outing!! I'm sure I'll pick 'em by the pound by weeks end !!!!! Good luck shroomrs!

Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003. Subject: Morel hunting. Great day for mushroom hunting yesterday 21 April, 2003 in Eastern Shelby county. The weather was overcast and cool, nevertheless a friend and myself hauled in a 4 gallons of good size greys and yellows in about 3 hours. We noticed that a few had started to dry up in the tops. All in all it was a great hunt!!! John Christian Co. IL

Firebirdlvr. Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003. Subject: morels. In Washington, IL , I found about 20-30 small greys yesterday (4/21/03). it was cold, with scattered rain and windy, but worthwhile. also 2-( one inch) yellows. Happy hunting :)

Josh found 12 little morels on Monday the 21st in central Illinois.

Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003. Subject: McHenry County Illinois. I live in McHenry County, Illinois, and was wondering if anyone hunts Morels around here. My dad is from southern Indiana, and I was first introduced to morels when I was a child hunting them in Terre Haute, Indiana. I still go there to visit my aunt around Easter every year, and get a taste for the hunt then, (she lives in the woods which has very good isolated spots). I've lived near Chicago all my life and have yet to meet anyone who's ever hunted a morel around this area. Do they exist around here? Please help me out, is there any info about this, and when they begin to sprout. Thanks, David C

Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003. Subject: A big haul. Tom, My regrets for not meeting up with you during the Trail of Tears festival April 19. I know I said I'd be there, but I do have a good excuse for giving you the slip. I personally picked over 1,000 morels in Jackson County that day, not including the morels I graciously allowed a couple of guests to haul out of the woods after they tagged along with me. (People think I never share my hotspots; but I do make exceptions.) I was exhausted by day's end and decided I shouldn't drive the 25 miles to Jonesboro. I figured you'd understand. It had truly been a fine day of picking, but tiresome as well. Collecting all of those morels on hands and knees all day, rising up and down too many times--as if I had wandered into a mercilessly long Catholic mass--actually became grueling work. Nonetheless, it's pretty good work, if you can get it. And I suppose more than a few readers would be willing to suffer the deeply euphoric fatigue one gets after picking so many morels in one day. In fact, I shook off my aches and returned for another round of picking on the following afternoon. By the end of that second day, with my head swimming as I staggered out of the woods, I uttered the unthinkable: "I don't ever want to see another morel," I whispered hoarsely as the sun set on Easter Sunday. "No more." I was back to my senses the next day. Nearly all of the morels collected April 19 and 20 were the petite Morchella deliciosa variety, although there were also a smattering of M. esculentas and a couple of dozen blacks on the hillsides. The season for black morels is basically finished in southern Illinois, depending on what you're willing to eat. Most of the specimens of that species are crumbly and water-logged now. But a few late-bloomers still are worth collecting and actually look fine. The condition of the M. deliciosas, on the other hand, was prime overall. Firm stems. Fresh. But, based on experience, a few warm days can reverse that appraisal. If anyone in southern Illinois hasn't looked for morels yet this season, they'd better hurry. Or move north. See you in Magnolia May 3. Joe M.

Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003. Subject: morels in ramsey. hi its brandon from marseilles il its so dry here its worse than ever will it rain and warm up? if not there wont be any shrooms to pick up here. lets hope it rains alot. i had to drive south 3 hours to vandalia to my friends last weekend to find a couple dozen. still a little early down there. good luck!

From: Linda R. Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003. Subject: First Sightings. Today in Quincy IL, I found 35 gray mushrooms around an oak tree. Looks like a good season so far, I hope I have a better day tomorrow.

Date: Wed, 23 Apr 2003. Subject: morel,S Grafton IL. Four of us went hunting last Friday and Saturday on the river near the Wild Goose. We found a over a hundred Pounds. I know it sounds like BS,but it has been documented and will be in the local paper. Pictured Left to Right AJ ,Garry R ,Bob and Sharon B . Jonboat

Date: Wed, 23 Apr 2003. Subject: findings Illinois. April 22 - found a few yellows and a half-cap near Edwardsville, IL; they were somewhat old (two to four days). Hopefully, more will follow with some warm weather. Have heard that near Carlinville, IL, many, many large ones have been found in the last couple of days. Ross

Date: Thu, 24 Apr 2003. Subject: mushrooms. J and C want to report finding some small greys and a few larger yellows south of Havana on April 23, 2003. The poison ivy is not very big yet, but the ticks are plentiful. Insect repellent doesn't faze them.

Date: Thu, 24 Apr 2003. Subject: Greys. I found my first greys yesterday. Whoohoo! You know what I'll be doing in the next month or so!!!! 11 of them within 1hr. about 6:30pm. It was in McLean county. from Bloomington! Date: Wed, 23 Apr 2003. Subject: morel finds. 8 #s today 7#s yesterday greys but mostly yellows. some growing six connected it`s beautiful out there---grasslands under elm, syramore, oak and ash---and especially near streams. Alton, Ill Morelli Nellie and Keith

Date: Fri, 25 Apr 2003 08:08:24 EDT. Subject: DewittMushrooms. Sorry to hear of Larry's passing. Did have the opportunity to meet him a few years back. My prayers to his family and friends.. Found 80 greys (4/20) Easter morning In Dewitt County. Size ranged from very small up to 3 inches.. Love your site. Bryan - Bloomington

Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2003 15:46:50 -0500. Subject: Morel Sighting. Found three yellow morels about two inches each widely separated from each other under a dead elm on a southeast facing slope near the Kankakee river at the southern tip of Will county in Illinois.

Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2003 07:57:20 EDT. Subject: 4/25/03 Spring Valley Il. Finally after 10 days of looking we found the little guys barely poking their heads out of the moss on a west slope of a ravine. Left them to grow and be biggies. Really need rain bad it very dry everywhere we checked. From Bub,Stumpy and the Midget

Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2003 05:50:47 -0400. Subject: sighting in grundy co. Found approx. 3 doz. Small grays Wednesday (April 23rd). the biggest being around 2 ". woods are extremely dry, practically "kicking up dust" while walking through. We need rain bad!! Wonder if I beat Rat in finding the first ones up here this year? Good luck all. Brian K.

Date: Sun, 27 Apr 2003 08:31:24 -0500 (CDT). Subject: Illinois Sighting. Went out on Saturday, April 26, with 10 other members of the Illinois Mycological Association for a foray in Will County Illinois. The grays were just starting, and we picked about 75 small ones. Rain is definitely needed here. Lots of Verpa conica, too. John D.

Hi Tom, I just got home from one of my daily jaunts this time of year, found about 2 1/2 #. I was surprised to find a few black shrooms in this patch ,this late. I have never hunted the fall morels, but I do have a friend who fall turkey hunts who has found them. I have known him most all my life and he has never told me any thing but the truth. Tony is my best friend and has turkey hunted spring and fall for around 20 years in IL. and surrounding states. I know he has told me of at least one spot in Shawnee Forest that he has found them. If it is OK with Tony, and you if you would like, I will put you directly in touch with him. I will call him this weekend and get his thoughts on the matter. James C.

Date: Sun, 27 Apr 2003 21:24:49 -0500. Subject: marseilles, il. From: Mater1. Sunday April 27 Marseilles, IL. Found my first morels today along the I-M Canal...not many, but it's a start. Timber is real dry.

From: MICHAEL D M. Date: Sun, 27 Apr 2003 22:14:47 -0500. greetings from SPRINGFIELD, IL Yesterday (26th) picked POUNDS of morels. Everyone was out, but they were very easy to find. Greys and yellows, and all good size. Today (27th) the woods seemed mostly picked over. Did not find that many. Does anyone know, is this the last weekend for morels in our area? Do we have to head up north now? You'll have to check with two people - Mother Nature and Father Time. It all depends on the combination of moisture and heat.

Date: Mon, 28 Apr 2003. Subject: Illinois morels. These (and a lot more) were found April 26 in Morgan Co. Also found a similar mess in Macoupin Co. on April 23. Thanks, Robert

Date: Mon, 28 Apr 2003 09:13:08 -0700 (PDT). Subject: Great Year in Fayette County. Hey Tom, It has been a fantastic year for those of us here in Fayette Co. Il..I have spent the majority of the last two weeks picking & cleaning (not to mention freezing!!!) morels.I made two trips to the same timber last week on back to back days (since it got dark on me the first day) I found six pounds of yellows the first day and returned to pick another sixteen+ pounds the second.It seems this year is one of those years that I have more places to hunt than I have time! Not a bad problem to have I guess! I have had a hard time finding the free time to even sit down long enough to get an e-mail out, so while I'm here I want to thank you and all those who participate in putting together, maintaining, and supporting the use of this page,as it is a valued asset to those of us who truely enjoy this sport.I'm sending a photo of the most perfect find I have made in several years,these morels were so fresh they were still colorless when I picked them.Thanks again Tom. BARTMAN

Date: Mon, 28 Apr 2003 11:58:35 -0500. Subject: sightings. Illinois - found a good number of fresh, yellow morels, some large, near Godfrey, on 4/26/03. Maybe the season is not over yet! - Ross

Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2003. Subject: EXCELLENT DAY FOR SHROONIN. Saturday the 26th was one of those memorable hunting days. Started out kinda slow but at the end we were walking out with about 250 good size yellows and some smaller greys. In addition, I found a set of sheds (antlers) 11 pt all total and my buddy came out with some arrowheads, nut rocks, and an arrow straightner. The best part was eating those tasty morels and gloating on our finds. Now thats what I call a day to remember. John Christian Co. IL

Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2003. Subject: sighting. Found 45 greys around recently deceased elm in sunny spot on 4/27. In Kickapoo area of Peoria County. New spot. Old faithful is a bit more shady and shrooms not up there yet. Ate them sauteed in butter with scrambled eggs. Phil

Date: Sun, 27 Apr 2003 10:14:26 -0500. Subject: knox county il. 4-26-3 knox county ill. we found our first mess of grays , 40 in all ,up to 1.5 inches.found them in the woods, by a tree. we need more sun. going to peoria county 2day. good picking my friends, from gr8tful1

Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2003 13:26:08 -0500. Subject: Morels. Found 15 morels near Belleville, Illinois, 4 /16/03. One worth a picture, Mike

From: Robyn G. Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003 22:43:09 -0500. Subject: Tazewell County Sighting. Found three morels all less than 4cm in size on a south facing hill in a heavily wooded area nestled in a bunch of dead leaves. All three were grey in color.

Date: Sun, 04 May 2003 12:02:17 -0500. Subject: Illinois morels. I found three small yellows today by a fallen red elm near Rantoul, IL (Champaign county). These are the first I've found this year. Maybe the season is a bit late this year in east central Illinois? Good Luck, Zack W.

MAGNOLIA REPORT 05/08/03: I finally got into the woods for serious hunting on Tuesday, 05-06-03. Found about 2.5 lbs of yellows scattered on west facing slopes of the Illinois River Valley. Found another 2.5 lbs of 1-3" greys within 20 feet of a dead elm on a north facing slope. We're hearing and seeing all kinds of reports that lead us to believe we're in a banner season. Tom

From: MIKE. Date: Mon, 05 May 2003. Subject: Cinco De Mayo Morels. Never say it's too late. In Macon county (Illinois) I found over 30 giant yellows. Here's a few of them. They're fresh!!!! Plus, they were walking distance to my house. I can hear the pan sizzling now....Great sight, see you next year

Date: Fri, 09 May 2003 09:27:58 -0500. Subject: A GOOD DAY TO HUNT. Pic's of our success!!!! John and Don Christian Co. IL

Date: Fri, 9 May 2003 13:33:07 -0500. Subject: Report. Virgin hunter has success. Picked a dozen grays after dark with 11 year old son. Been scouting S Cook County hard for the past two weeks for Ash trees but none found. All found last night near dead Elms with bark mostly intact. Hope to find more this weekend. Thanks to your posters and you for information that helped us be successful. Keith A.

Date: Sat, 10 May 2003 06:35:46 -0500. Subject: Morels are up in northern illinois. From somewhere near Pecatonica in northern illinois. Morels are up. I picked about a pound yesterday 5/9/03. All were greys from 1" to 3" tall. We have had 4" of rain in the last 12 days, so the moisture is here, we just need it to stay warm at night. Looks like this week & next week will be the prime season. Kind of late this year. Also went to Peoria last friday 5/2/03 & picked a 4 pound bag of mixed yellow & greys. Good luck to everyone from SPONGE in Pecatonica.

Date: Sat, 10 May 2003 22:56:44 EDT. Subject: report. Dear Tom: Illinois:southern Cook County-yes Virginia there are morels in those woods. Report from yesterday didn't list state-sorry! Today, in 2 1/2 hours my eleven year old and I picked 113 yellows from 1 1/2" to 7" and wide. Fifteen under one tree! When I get pictures will e-mail for later posting. Again thanks to those who post and you for providing help to the former virgin. Keith A.

Date: Sat, 10 May 2003 23:39:34 -0500. Hey guys n' gals fresh from quad city area may, 10th found 15 lbs by 9:00 am grey's as big as soft balls yellows as big as small children , probably 100 too burnt to pick. one more week before ground cover is too thick I think maybe not ? cool web site thanks for putting it out . good luck shroom heads, slim from east moline IL. R.I.P. LARRY . P.S. I weighed my shrooms in my spore sack on a digital fish scale very accurate thanks for the sack

Date: Thu, 1 May 2003 00:56:47 -0500. Subject: Sighting: Rock Island County, IL. Randy and Ron found 21 grays on the top of East facing slopes, around brush piles and dead Elms. We spotted some on North facing slopes but will go back to get them after they plump-up a little more. We got our mushroom-eyes back. Looking forward to the Championship hunt. I can't wait to see 500-some people scramble into the woods, awesome. Best Regards, Ron S.

Date: Sat, 3 May 2003 22:47:26 EDT. Subject: (no subject). The day started out slower than I had hoped but I ended up picking about 30 mushrooms and saw around 200. The only reason I only picked 30 was because I wasn't sure about the "peckerhead" mushrooms. By the end of the day I had walked out of the woods with 30 mushrooms, a huge five point shed (just one antler), and a whole deer skull with four points. Brandon, East Peoria, IL.

From: Angie. Date: Wed, 7 May 2003 23:12:06 EDT. Subject: Morels in IL. In Mercer County between Reynolds and Matherville. About 50 greys and yellows. YUM!

From: Chris K. Date: Thu, 15 May 2003. Subject: Morels in Winnebago County. (05/15/2003) My father introduced me to Morel hunting when I was 8 years old and my love for the Morel and being outside is stronger than ever 28 years later. Found 25 yellow morels South of Pecatonica and a combination of 82 greys & yellows North of Pecatonica. I love this time of year. Whitcomb

Date: Sat, 17 May 2003. Subject: morels. 17 May 03, Lansing area, Got about 2 1/2 pounds of mostly yellows today. Most 3-4 inches, some very nice larger ones. Under dead elms with mayapples around them and pretty damp. Great season here so far. CLS

Date: Sun, 18 May 2003 09:17:17 -0500. Subject: Success :-) Thanks a lot Tom and Vickie for another great event in Magnolia! With the information gleaned from the speakers on friday nights doins and talking with some other fellow maniacs during the hunt Sat. I gotta admit I learned enough to find 27 lbs. in the last two days. Mostly yellows some greys and a smattering of half-tops. Like you allready alluded to,it IS a banner year. My daughter and I got in as walk-ons this year and found shrooms, mostly briar patches though... Anyway after 33 years of shroomin i thought I knew it all; untill I came to to best festival in the country. See you next year. Oh yeah, know anyone that wants to buy any fresh morels? I'm goin out again today after I write this and check another 10 acres. Tim in West Brooklyn, Illinois. 5/18/03

Date: Sun, 25 May 2003 07:23:27 -0500. Subject: morels. This is SPONGE again, from somewhere near Pecatonica. On 5/23/03 I went roadhunting & found the biggest shrooms of the year. 14 pounds in about 2 hours. One shroom had a stem that weighed 7/8 of a pound!!!!! All were starting to get old, but i picked them anyway. Some were 12" tall. Also got some nice greys & fresh yellows from the north side of the ditch. The year is pretty much over now. Got about 30 pounds total for the year. Now for the long wait till next year. Thanks for the site & will post again next year.