Date of Stay: June, 2010
We planned a stop here for a short nights rest on our way back north. I've always had good luck at KOA except this one. I had my wife call and make the reservation while I fueled up. The reservation agent did not ask her if we wanted a back-in or pull-thru. My only request was for full hookups. I had check the website earlier and found a rate (with taxes) of $56.56. My wife said the total was $62.50 so I figured we were getting a premium spot. We arrived at 10 minutes until 10 pm - closing time is 10 p.m. The woman at the front desk told us we would have to get back on the main road and go to the next entrance - about another 1/4 mile. She called the office to have someone wait for us since it was just before closing. To get back to the road I had to back up in the dark - not fun. We arrived at the second entrance and had trouble getting oriented. Unlike the first entrance, this one was all gravel, signage and lighting were poor. I went up to the office to find the door locked. I called the phone number and the woman who answered said we would find a map on the door. It was on the door so I it was up to us to find our spot. I studied the map for awhile as it was dark, there were no "street signs" and we had to make our way around by looking for buildings and spot numbers. We passed many empty sites, including pull-thrus, on the way to our site. When we arrived at our site B-07 I could not believe that they would put us there in a 34' class A motorhome. Again, it was dark, there were no lights, and we were surrounded by trees and other obstacles including picnic tables, fire rings, etc. Our spot was sloped quite a bit and to get in I had to pull into the spot in front of us. Good thing that stop was empty otherwise there is not way that we could have got in. I pulled into the spot in front of ours and jumped out to study the terrain. When I got out the electric step dug into the ground as we were tilted sideways - the rear tires were in a rut. Then I carefully backed into our spot until touching the leaves of trees. Our nose barely cleared the road in front of us. This spot was clearly not suitable for our unit. After seeing our spot I called the staff via telephone and they offered to give us another spot. However it was not getting late and we just wanted to get some sleep as we hit the road the next morning at 6:30 a.m. So much for a "quick nights rest." It would have been easier (and probably not much more expensive) to stay at a hotel.
Date of Stay: March, 2010
Overall a nice campground with very friendly staff. Two complaints: all of the paved spots were full, so I got a gravel spot. Some of the gravel sites had standing water puddles, mine included. The sewer cleanout was a little far, so I did not connect the first night. For the second night I moved to a paved site. Second complaint: since my water heater was broken, I had to use the shower house. The closest shower was the Rec Center (which only had one shower). Unfortunately the sink area was filthy and covered in hairs. There was no hook to hang my things and no mat on the floor. I mentioned this to the staff and hopefully they will do better next time.
Date of Stay: August, 2008
Nice park but needs some improvements: 1. The WiFi signal was very weak at our spot #189. We told the KOA folks several times and other than "we'll reset it" they didn't seem to care. I asked one fellow to stop by after he reset the router to see if it helped - he never showed up. Even at a picnic table in plain view of the KOA-2 antenna the signal was weak. The KOA-1 network worked great over by the "Pancake Pavillion." 2. We were told that there was a marked trail from the campground to the Shenandoah River. It's even shown on the campground map but we found no marking whatsoever. 3. There was a tent camper near our spot who did not have electric. So he plugged his boom box into an electric outlet next to ours and turned up the volume. We were thankful for the 10 pm - 8 am quiet hours. After a few days we learned our way around Harpers Ferry. But there is very little printed information on trails and how to get around. Could use some improvement here too. We paid $6 to enter the National Historic Park (good for 3 days). The Visitor's Center is next to the KOA entrance road. You can park a big rig at the Visitor's Center and take a free bus to downtown. There is also a trail from the Visitors Center to Murphy's Farm (great view of the river) and another trail to downtown. But again, don't expect to find a map!
Date of Stay: September, 2007
I purchased a KOA Value Card for a 10% discount. However this campground offers one free night per week. But they will only give you one or the other. So it turns out the free night was a better deal! The KOA Value Card was a waste. Overall a nice facility but we have a few complaints: 1. Ant infestation: after our first night we discovered ants in the motorhome. I discovered that a whole army of ants was marching right up the right front stabilizer. So I sprayed the area. The next day my wife found ants all over the bed. We discovered that they were coming in via the cable TV cable from outside! I sprayed that area. However, the next morning, they were marching in again! So I strung the cable TV cable and electrical cord up in the air so they they wouldn't touch the ground. My wife also called the office. They sent someone out to spray. For the next week we spent many hours scooping up hoards of ants with a wet sponge and washing them down the sink. We're back home now and I still don't know how many ants are in the motorhome! 2. The first evening we went on the nature trail by the lake. After walking about 25 minutes we came to the end of the path at a "T." There was no sign indicating which way to go. We must have gone the wrong way because we came to a dead end. It started to get dark and the mosquitoes started to bite. This concerned us a bit and we contemplated turning around but we had no flashlight. We went the other direction and luckily found our way back. Now for the positives: Very clean, well-managed, and quiet. The wireless internet worked well except that you have to log in for access. Occasionally during browsing you are redirected to the login screen again and you have to log in again.
Date of Stay: July, 2007
We spent one night here because there was not a single spot available at Assateague's state or national park campgrounds. It was our first experience with full hookups. Our site had water, sewer and electricity. All I can say is that hookups are nice! We took long, hot showers in the motorhome and slept well with the air conditioner running. Our spot was located across from the lake ("lakeview"). It was not impressive. I wouldn't pay extra for this since it was basically a pond covered with algae. No wildlife or anything really to look at. The signs proclaimed "catch and release." We backed into our lot which was nestled among the trees. The shade was nice. Watch out for the trees - our neighbor backed his trailer into one and bent his bumper. Ouch! The roads in our loop were gravel and the site itself was dirt. Lucky for us it was dry. If it rains you'll be dragging mud into your unit. There are a few sites with concrete pads. There are not dumpsters in each loop. So I had to walk a ways to throw out the trash. My wife and I don't have any kids, so to be fair we really weren't impressed with the campground. Ft. Whaley was built for kiddies and everyone had them. There is a pool, mini-golf, an activities shelter and camp store. The store was well-stocked but I don't know why you would want to pay double for something you can get at Wal-Mart 10 minutes up the road. Registering and checking out was a slow process. The staff was apparently still learning the software. It wasn't even configured correctly - the invoice said "123 Anytown - Insert Address Here" on it! Aside from the software, the staff was neither friendly nor rude. Just kind of indifferent. When we walked over to the store we overheard some staff compaining amongst themselves. We retired early and, as can be expected, we could hear kids yelling and campers pounding on things (setting up, I guess). You must be set up by midnight. Every now and then we heard someone's dog barking incessantly (during daylight hours). The noise must have all stopped at some point because I slept like a rock. We got up early and all was quiet and still.
Date of Stay: July, 2007
This was our first overnight at the national park campground. We usually go to the state park but it was full. The NPS website (recreation.gov) allows you to see exactly which day each and every campsite is available. And they don't require a multiple-night stay if camping includes a Saturday. During this busy season, we only spent a Thursday night because that's all that was open. We were very impressed. After you purchase the $10 park permit (good for one week), the campsite was only $20 per night - a bargain. If you camp often, you can buy an annual access pass for only $20. There are no hookups, so you'll hear a generator running on occasion. We were reluctant to turn ours on because it is noisier than most. So we only ran it for a short while to charge the batteries while we took onboard showers. Quiet hours are 10 pm to 6 am. The park has cold showers. So cold in fact that my wife couldn't stand it! There are portable toilets available as well as a fresh water spigot. The beaches are clean. The campsite was generally quiet. We had a relaxing time walking on the beach and riding our bicycles on the flat, bicycle-only lanes. We will definitely be back.
Date of Stay: June, 2007
This was my second visit (camped here in October 2006). This time the showers where piping hot! Nice campground with wooded sites, hiking trails, lake with beach. Also Catoctin Zoo And Wildlife Refuge nearby (a must see). The only thing that I didn't like was seeing a mother wash out her baby's diaper in the lake. Yuck! Other than that, my niece and I had fun swimming. Nice shower houses near the lake too.
Date of Stay: October, 2006
We originally planned to visit Greenbrier State Park but were turned off by the fact that it bordered a large hunting area. So we choose Cunningham Falls instead. Our visit was timed to catch the peak fall colors - and we hit the nail right on the head by using The Weather Channel's online foliage map. Prior to arriving at the campground, we stopped at the Catoctin Zoo And Wildlife Preserve (across the main highway). We spent most of the afternoon there. It is now my wife's favorite zoo - rivaling even the Baltimore and Washington zoos. From the reviews that we read, we can agree that the facilities were modern and clean. The hot shower, however, wasn't exactly hot - but acceptably warm. The shower house itself was not heated. Fortunately for us the temperatures the two nights we were at the park were warmer that normal. We camped in the William Houck Area, Deer Spring Branch Loop. The first night (Thursday) we were the only ones in the loop except for a small group occupying one of the small cottages. My wife was not comfortable because of the lack of lighting and other people. The bathhouse area was lit, but the loop itself was unlit and quite dark at night. The second night (Friday) brought in lots of other campers for the weekend. The campsite was clean, quiet at night, and remote. During the day we hiked a few trails and seldom saw other people. It was definitely off season. The colors were beautiful and we returned home with lots of photographs. If you're looking for a remote, quiet getaway in the woods, this is the place for you. This state park is adjacent to the national park.
Date of Stay: September, 2005
This was our first camping adventure and we loved it. Arriving at park, wild ponies and deer walk around freely. Our spot was in loop "H", the only loop with electric (only about 25 sites have electric). Rate is $30 without electric. Arrived Wednesday - fewer campers and clean bathhouses. By Saturday lots of kids and bathhouses quickly became dirty. Hot showers were nice. Campground very quiet - no music, generators or roudy neighbors. Campsites are very close to ocean - just a two minute walk over the dune. This is a great place to relax - quiet, peaceful and natural. Beaches are clean an uncrowded. No bugs whatsoever, although we heard that they can be bad at certain times of the year. Freshwater and dumping facility on-site. Camp store sells basic supplies and souvenirs. Also a grill serving up hamburgers and stuff. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources does a great job at managing this state treasure.