Date of Stay: May, 2005
Very nice grounds and facilities, well-maintained. Staff were very helpful and friendly. Looks like it would be a great place if you have children (ours are grown and don't accompany us). But it was just too crowded, and campsites too close together, to suit us. One major disappointment: the bathhouses had no heat. We were there in early May and it was still a little chilly. We have no hot water or shower in our small popup, so we shower in the bathhouse. My lady was very disappointed about having to step into the chilled bathhouse air after her shower. I would think that with all the facilities here, they at least could have some heat in the bathhouse. But then, there appeared to be few trailers as small as ours, so I guess most campers shower in their RVs. Anyway, I doubt we will return.
Date of Stay: May, 2005
We camped here over Memorial Day weekend, so our comments should be taken in that context. In short, we will not come here again during any busy period. Thus far we have been quite pleased with Virginia State Parks, but this was just too crowded. Other state parks we've been to typically isolate the campground from other facilities. But here they have a day use area with access to the Chesapeake Bay for beachgoers, an educational center, and an amphitheater -- all adjacent to the campground. In fact, you have to drive through the day use parking area and past the educational center and amphiteater to get to one loop of the campground. There seemed to be evening activities at the amphiteater all three nights, so I'm sure those in the loop got little peace. The camp store is adjacent (adjoined?) to the educational center and amphiteater, but on this weekend with its day-use hoards there was no parking anywhere near it. But the kicker for us (with no shower and hot water in our small popup): On Saturday and Sunday they seemed to run out of hot water at every bathhouse. (Friday night was fine.) We tried three of them Sunday and finally resigned ourselves to cold showers. The staff guessed that demand outstripped supply. There is a major thoroughfare adjacent to the campground, and some campsites are no more than 100' from the road, with nothing more than a fence and some vegetation separating the road from the site -- obviously not very peaceful. Fortunately, we got a site closer to the bay, and it was actually very nice. They told us there are no "waterfront" sites and that those closest to the bay are separated from it by sand dunes. But we could partially see the bay over the dunes. And we had a much better view from atop a small dune next to the site on which we could set our chairs and watch the sunset across the water. So the site itself was quite nice, and level. I think this would be a very nice park to visit in, say, September (NOT Labor Day), when the air and Chesapeake Bay are still warm but the crowds have diminished. But again, not for us during busy season.
Date of Stay: April, 2005
Relatively small, very nice. Good separation of campsites -- we find that typical of Virginia State Parks and prefer that to what seems to be, from our admittedly limited camping experience, a tendancy for private CGs to cram as many sites as possible into their acreage. Clean bathhouses, hot water, helpful staff, secure, lake nearby. The only reason we didn't rate it a 10: Several sites are less than level. We had to hunt around a little to find one that was level and the right size for a small popup.
Date of Stay: October, 2004
Very nice park, not far from the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia's mountains. Most sites are shaded, a small number (including ours) are on the shore of a 4-acre lake and have less shade. Bathhouses were clean, facilities were in good shape and included laundry, the lake (with boat and kayak rentals available), a playground, small trout ponds (with fishing available), cabins and duplexes, a pavilion for group events, and a country store. A few seasonal sites, but the majority are for overnighters. We were very pleased, and thought it a great value!