Date of Stay: April, 2006
The entrance to this place leads you down a paved, but narrow, slightly windy road around some trees, and it can be a bit of a challenge, especially for longer RV's. Eventually, you end up in a moderately wooded area where the office and store are located. The staff are friendly, check in was easy, and we were escorted to our site along some other windy, gravel roads that led us through a variety of some very traditional, wooded sites that appear to have been there for a while. Toward the back of the campground, there is an area that is still under construction and, in the midst of that, there are what appear to be some new pull throughs. Our site was gravel, plenty long for our almost 60 feet, and we were able to get level with minimal effort. There were 2 sewer connections which could be convenient. Clearly, the place is geared for families, especially youngsters, which could be gathered from the name. We were there early in the season, so there were not too many guests of any age, but the pull-through section where we were located did fill up at night. At the moment, they are adding a water slide to the facility, and the construction equipment is very much in evidence. It should add to the overall family atmosphere once completed. I don't think we'd enjoy this place once all the children arrived but, for an overnight, it served it's purpose very well, and we'll probably stop again on our way back south in the fall.
Date of Stay: April, 2006
What is it they say about real estate...location, location, location? Well, this place has the location. Unfortunately, that location is both a blessing and a curse! They are very convenient to I-95, and that convenience makes them an excellent place to stop for an overnight when traveling back and forth along that route. However, they are so close to I-95 that you can look out your window, watch the traffic go up and down the interstate and, if you squint, you can almost read the license plates on each vehicle. A slight exaggeration on the license plates, but the place almost sits on I-95's shoulder. The other detriment to their location is their proximity to the railroad and the trains are not shy when using their whistles. Both the couple that runs the place and their staff are friendly, and they provide pull through sites with a variety of combinations of hook-ups and free WiFi, but don't expect too much more than that. It's a pretty basic, bare bones kind of place!
Date of Stay: April, 2006
This is a pleasant, 2 year old campground that is run by some very friendly folks. When we arrived, we were immediately greeted by several happy people, and there were many others in the office/community room celebrating 3 different birthdays. The main entrance road as well as the road leading from the office to some of the sites are large crushed rock. Interior roads are mostly stone dust with a little gravel, and some dust was evident as a result of this material. Our site was medium size crushed gravel, and required only minimal leveling. Adjacent to the gravel "pad" was some finely crushed gravel which served as the "patio". There was also a large rubber mat, that our escort made sure was neatly placed in front of our door. He also cheerfully volunteered to help us with our hook-ups, but we reassured him we could do that without a problem, and he returned to the frstivities up front, while continuing to escort other new arrivals. Sites are organized around the campground in a mixture of a single row and several random placements. Most seemed to have adequate space between sites. There are a few long-term/ permanent(?) gueast, but the place is well cared for by the very friendly owners. We would stop back when next in this area.
Date of Stay: March, 2006
This is a pleasant enough campground, especially for a KOA, but if you've ever been to one of the finer resorts around the country, there's no way that this place rates a 10, or even a 9! The staff are pleasant and helpful. The roads are paved although somewhat narrow. Maneuvering a very large rig could be somewhat difficult in spots. Some of the sites are paved and, even the unpaved ones that we saw had patios. Other than that, there is nothing outstanding that we encountered.
Date of Stay: December, 2005
Overall, this is a very nice resort-type destination. Although it's named Grand Lake, for the most part, you can't see the lake unless you go down by the cafe at the far end of the property. From there, you can walk out on the docks to the water. The entrance is quite Grand with a long, paved drive (all roads are paved) that passes through large iron gates and leads you into the property which eventually opens up as you enter. On the right, you'll encounter a large section of grassy sites, described as "Superior" sites which can be rented for a slight discount. They are also available for rallys, storage, etc. Once past this section, there are two other sections referred to as "Deluxe" sites. There is a large section on the right and a smaller section on the left. Also to the left is the golf course. These deluxe sites have paved entrance/exit sections with a concrete pad. Ours was very level. All the pads are sufficiently wide and quite long. The sites themselves have adequate, albeit, not overly generous side yards. Between some sites, there are small shrubs/trees and, on a few sites, there are some rather large, trees with dangling moss. Some of the sites need some manicuring as there are weeds growing up between the paved sections and the concrete pads, the shubbery/trees need trimming to allow for slideouts, etc. You'll also encounter an occasional pothole on the roadways. There is some evidence of ants with the typical hills that are indicative of red ants, but they will treat your site if you feel it's necessary and request it. There is a nice reception area with friendly, helpful staff. In that same area, is a mailroom where mail is sorted and placed in mailboxes each day. UPS and Fed-Ex is also sorted for guests. Also in the clubhouse is an exercise room and a large room with a fully equipped kitchen used for parties, social gatherings, daily activities, etc. Down by the water, is the store with limited stock and the cafe. The pool is heated and there are tennis courts, bocce ball, horse shoes and shuffleboard. Golf carts are also available to rent. The cable is rather limited with only 13 stations, but many were using their satellites. WiFi is available, but the reception can be limited and ours would occasionally disconnect. This is a family-friendly resort, but there is not an abundance of children. The new managers are friendly, eager to please and responsive to the needs of the guests. Despite some minor issues, this is definitely one of the better resorts that you'll encounter.
Date of Stay: November, 2005
This is a fairly pleasant place to stay although I'm not sure it's entirely worthy of all the accolades it has received. We stayed in the front. The rear portion where the lake is appears a little newer and a little nicer than the front. It's convenient to I-295 with easy on/off. Perhaps a little too convenient as the front gets some of the noise from the interstate traffic. We didn't find it particularly disturbing, but I could see how some might. Plane traffic also will periodically remind you that the airport is nearby. The roads are paved although they are somewhat windy and narrow in spots and maneuvering requires a little caution. Sites are also paved but up front they are a little tired with cracked, rippled, pock-mocked sections and, in a few spots, there are holes left by leveling jacks going right through the pavement. Some sites are also a little tight to get in and out of, especially with our crew cab/long bed truck and 38' 5th wheel. Facilities seem clean and well kept if not a little tired and dated. Staff are friendly and helpful. As I said, it's a fairly pleasant place to stay and we would probably go back. As for the ratings of "10", I suspect these reviewers have never had the opportunity to stay at a resort that really rates a 10!
Date of Stay: August, 2005
This is a very pleasant place set up in a circular fashion with most of the sites backing in away from the exterior perimeter. Many of those sites border a small river that runs by. In addition, there are 6 very long pull-throughs that run from one side of the circle to the other and can accommodate any size RV. A couple of small flower gardens are also located within the circle. Some of the sites seem to be occupied by seasonals, but many are also available for short-term stays. It's run by a very friendly couple who live on site. Interior roads are basically dirt and the sites are mostly grass. They offer free WiFi and, for an extra fee, they offer a large selection of cable channels. There is also an extra charge for each day you use your A/C and they do this by the honor system. It's mostly adults and, although children are welcome, there isn't much for them to do there. They do offer community food events/parties and a big bon fire on Saturday evenings. Listed rate is nightly with a 7 for 6 discount, and with extra charges for 7 days of cable and 3 days A/C.
Date of Stay: June, 2005
This is a lovely place to stay! Interior roads are paved. Pads are slightly narrow and without a patio, but they are also paved. We were able to get level with little difficulty. Side yards are enormous! Most CG's would have packed twice as many sites in each space. Each site has a picnic table, fire ring and garbage can. The entire park is made up of several small clusters of sites which gives everything a more intimate feeling than the usual mass environment. Although not wooded, there are many trees that are strategically placed, there is some landscaping between most sites and there are flowers planted throughout. Everything is very well manicured. There are many activities as listed in the previous reviews and the family atmosphere is evident with many children, pets, etc., however, you never get the feeling that you're in some kind of chaotic family madhouse. I would definitely call this more of a family-oriented resort that couples and seniors can feel comfortable in as well. The casino/hotel/restaurants are just down the road and the shuttle comes through the park regularly. WiFi signal is very weak and, even though we were told we were right across from the "repeater", it disconnected with some regularity. We were also told they have had some trouble with the system and have tried different providers. This makes a great destination place to go. You can tour the local area or just spend your time at the resort.
Date of Stay: April, 2005
If you're a youngster, even one in your early teens, you'll probably love this place. It's certainly geared toward your age group. If you're a parent and like a place that's devoted to children, you'll also love this place. From the name, to the atmosphere, to the types of activities, it's geared for children. If you're looking for an average campground, this place could also work for you, but we found it to be nothing exceptional. The staff are pleasant. The roads in the front are paved and in reasonably good condition. Once past the reception building and the "red-carpet" sites, all roads are gravel. By the way, the red-carpet sites have a concrete patio and, for that little piece of heaven, you'll be charged an extra $15-28 depending of the time of year and the day of the week. Except for that patio, all the sites look the same. All sites are gravel and have a picnic table and fire ring. Our site was not particularly level so we asked for another that wasn't much better. Many of the sites have tall pines that do offer some shade. There is no cable, but you can pick up 5-6 fuzzy, local stations with your antenna. WiFi is planned, but not yet available. Unfortunately, there are not a lot of choices in this area. We've also been to the only other campground that's a major player in this area, and it's not any better! We've seen everything that we want to see in the area and probably won't be back to either one!
Date of Stay: April, 2005
This campground located in Verona, VA officially calls itself Shenandoah Valley KOA. We called ahead to check on site availability for a long pull-through with 50amp service for at least 3 nights and we asked about an option to stay as long as 6 nights. We were told that a site meeting our requirements was not a problem. When we arrived a couple of hours later, the only site that they could offer us was a site that did not comfortably fit our truck and 38'RV, it was only 30amp and, in order to get a site for 6 nights we would have had to change sites in the middle of our stay. We decided to leave after 3 nights instead. While there, we found this to be an old-fashioned, old-type, family-oriented campground that is very popular with fishermen/women/children who all liked to take advantage of the river that runs behind the place. There are picnic tables, fire rings that get lots of use and plenty of tall pines for shade. They claim they removed 600 trees, but the trees are still very plentiful and, if you have a long rig like we do, you will still need to be somewhat cautious coming and going. Besides the fishing, a pool and hot tubs, they offer other activities. They offer a form of cable which they refer to as Satellite TV and they make 12 stations available. We were only able to pick up about half of them without using our own dish and, because the campground sits so low compared to the surrounding countryside, I'm sure an antenna would have been of little value. Cell phone service was also all but impossible. They do offer free WiFi. Staff are pleasant if not inefficient about getting the proper site info reserved.
Date of Stay: April, 2005
This is a pleasant enough family-oriented campground that seems to have an older section and a newer section. As a matter of fact, there seems to be quite a lot of newness going on. There is a building that looks new and another large new building is going up. The roads are old pavement covered with gravel in the front and fresh gravel in a newer rear section. Some of the gravel in that newer section, on both the roads and the sites, is a litle thick and can get quite soft, but it looked as though they were starting to pour some concrete sites in the last rows. Maybe shades of better things to come as our soft-gravel site made it tougher than it should have been to get level. Although sites do have concrete patios, picnic tables and two sewer hook-ups, the water and electric connections seemed inconveniently placed. Another recent addition is WiFi, but they charge extra for it. Everything was clean and the staff were pleasant. It's nice to see a place that seems to be interested in re-investing in itself instead of just taking profits off the top. The potential to be an even better place to stay is certainly within reach.
Date of Stay: April, 2005
There is virtually nothing about this place that would qualify it as a "resort"! What it is, instead, is an old-fashioned campground. There are paved roads around the reception area, but as soon as you go around back, you encounter narrow roads going up and down that are covered in a variety of sizes of crushed stone and rather large crushed rock! There are trees throughout much of the campground but, because we're so long, we fortunately didn't feel like we were in the middle of the woods. There are fire rings, but they apparently aren't used too often. Ours was filled with leaves from last fall and was very close to our RV. Our site was not too level and, once in place, our front door stepped out onto some enormous exposed roots from the neighboring tree. This is an OK place for an overnight stop if you get caught in this area and feel like you're going into a coma and can't drive any further, but don't expect anything fancy and certainly don't look for anything resembling a resort!
Date of Stay: April, 2005
This campground has paved roads with concrete pads and offers amenities like a swimming pool, shuffleboard, horseshoes, etc. There is also a golf course nearby in case you don't like gambling. The reception area is pleasant and the staff are friendly. On the surface, it should work very well. After arriving at our assigned site, we discovered the electric recepticle was up-side-down. It could have been used that way, but it seemed to place too much stress on our 50amp cord so we returned to the office to seek some assistance from maintenance. We were told that the change of shifts would occur in 15-20 minutes and that no one would come to assist us until after the change. After waiting the required time, someone did come. They also seemed puzzled about the up-side-down socket but they were able to make the repair. When we finally plugged in, there was no power. Adjacent sites also complained about no power. After making a tour of the area to check breakers, maintenance reported that they would need to call an electrician to determine the cause. So now, an hour after we were assigned our site, we returned to the office to ask for another one. Later in our stay, we were seeking a propane refill but, since we arrived in the middle of the morning and we were 15 minutes early, we were told we would have to wait before anyone would be called. These two incidents were reflective of an attitude that was not geared toward good customer service and relations. All in all, it was also reflective of poor management and maintenance of facilities. For example, the grass (mostly weeds) between each site was badly overgrown. There were garbage can holders which were thoughtfully and conveniently placed throughout the park, but the one across from our site was falling apart and the pieces just remained on the ground throughout our stay. The laundry room equipment cost double that of machines we have used in other resorts and campgrounds, and the dryers were very inefficient requiring additional extra coins with each use. This could be a very nice place with a little attention to detail toward both the guests and the facility.
Date of Stay: March, 2005
This is a very pleasant campground that sits up on a hill. The drive up a somewhat steep with some curves, but the roads are paved and it wasn't a problem. Once you arrive on top, you'll encounter a very nice couple who spent 15-20 minutes giving us an orientation and maps of nearby Hot Springs National Park. In this case, Hot Springs NP is the town. Sites are gravel, plenty long enough for our 36'RV and truck, and ours was fairly level. Some of the pull-throughs do drop off and we may not have fit as comfortably in those. There are extra fees for 50a service, cable TV and WiFi. Because you're so high, it's very quiet and we had a very pleasant stay.
Date of Stay: March, 2005
This is a pleasant campground managed by a friendly couple. There is a management-operated restaurant in the clubhouse that serves breakfast and dinner and we were immediately invited to dinner upon arrival. Although we didn't eat there, many others did and the prices seemed very reasonable. Interior roads and sites are gravel and reasonably well maintained. Our site was plenty long for our almost 60' of truck and RV. There was a small gravel side yard with a very nice, new looking, loveseat rocker/glider. There were trees around that offer some shade, but you didn't get the feeling that you were buried in the woods. Fishing is available. It worked very well for our overnight stay.