Date of Stay: December, 2013
Us Midwesterners wanted to go somewhere warm for the Christmas week. We used this website to search for campgrounds. Our only requirements were sewer, river access, a roomy site and located in a warmer, winter climate. We searched from the Louisiana coastline to South Carolina for a campground that sounded like the best place to go. After days of research, earth/campsite maps and reading reviews, this sounded like the best place to go! This is an Indian Reservation and wildlife preserve owned by The Poarch Band of Creek Indians. My email request for reservations was answered quickly and just as previous reviews, we got a total steal for the week @ $150.00 for W/E/S ($21.42 per day for a week). Google Maps brought us directly to the address with no issues. As we arrived later in the day on a Saturday, our parking passes were at the gate. We were placed on site 28, but were told we could take whichever site we’d like. 28 was AWESOME! It’s an asphalt type pad - one board off level to the left. Anyone that complains about un-level sites is a baby, IMO. The site is very spacious and overlooks a small lake to the rear. Part of the lake is the ‘swimming-hole’, which looks like fun for the kiddies. There are some sites with large sites and others that are somewhat grouped. There was no one else here. A few ‘permanent’ looking sites, but that was it. There is no Wifi, but I got fairly good roaming signal with Sprint. I could email & internet, but too slow for a stream. There are a few T.V. stations available. Water quality and pressure was fine. Horse stalls looked nice. The restrooms/showers were large and clean. There was a soda machine and laundry for $1.25. The Big Escambia Creek winds through the reservation. It was too cold to tube, but it SURE looks like a nice ride. We were going to canoe, but the day after we arrived, it rained so much the creek rose about 7 feet! It would have been white water rafting!! Stargazing was awesome; saw Venus and the Milky Way. Be sure Google Sky is loaded before coming. We walked every trail available to us, but the ‘good’ trails were across the creek, which we couldn’t cross because of the height of the water, not the park’s fault. However, the other trails were nice also. We have two dogs that thoroughly enjoyed the over 5 hours of walking / sniffing time. We did go to the casino, as the weather was bad. It was fun for us non-gamblers... Won $30! Nice, friendly people and you could drink for free if you were playing, SWEET!! The town of Atmore is about ½ hour away. Sadly, the economy has hit them hard and there’s not a whole lot to do there. Rowland Tires repaired our flat trailer tire for $10! We would surely come back to this location. To see photos of this location, please visit: http://midwesternplants.org/2013/12/25/christmas-at-magnolia-branch-campground-atmore-alabama/
Date of Stay: October, 2011
Let's start out by saying it was an awesome weekend to camp! 80F, sunny & October! Anyway, we chose this campground on a whim, necessity to close-up for the season & on proximity, 1 hour away. Our only request was for good Wi-Fi service & on site 16, we had it. We were on the main drag & the site was smaller than past locations we've camped at. We took a walk around the seasonal sites & there really was no site pride. We read a past review that stated, "We've gotten more for less"... Yes, that sums it up for $39 a night. But. Our less than graveled site surprised us with a 0 bubble reading upon 1st back-up. Sewer is located at the rear of the site, so farther than the normal side location. Hwy 90 was just white noise to us, but seasonals are right next to it. There are canoes & paddle boats to rent on the sad lake. They need to add a fountain or aeration of some sorts. We walked our 2 border collies round & wished there were more trash cans around. Bathrooms were nice, neat & new. Other campers were very friendly & mostly passing through. US Cellular & Nextel had good service. Joe's Place pizza was awesome! Firewood at $4.50 a 6 piece bundle. Would say that if you were passing through for the weekend, go ahead & stop in, but no extended stays. We didn't use the dump station, as we had full hook-up.
Date of Stay: September, 2011
We stayed here for Labor Day weekend, arriving Wednesday night. Management was flexible about our later arrival & left paperwork outside. We stayed on a full hook-up, site 32. The sites in this section are a bunch roomier than the ones towards the front of the park. Site was old gravel, but mostly level. The map on the website is very skewed. We have 2 border collies & they had plenty of room on our site & the place is very dog friendly. Although Wi-Fi was only supposed to be in the office, I was able to get it at my site until everyone else got there on Friday night. The pool was nice on Thursday morning, but didn't revisit. The bathrooms were very clean & new. I only looked at the showers, but they also were clean & new. TV wise, we got a couple of stations. Don't know if they have security guards year round, but they did for that weekend. No one was disruptive that I heard. There are a lot of seasonals & they were very friendly. We didn't use the dump station, but it looks easy to maneuver. Water pressure was OK. We walked our dogs around the park & the ponds within the grounds, but missed going on the trails that others said were awesome. Enjoyed the park & will come back next year. Would have been a 10 if Wi-Fi could be offered.
Date of Stay: August, 2011
We came here specifically to tube on the Kishwaukee River, which runs right into the park. When making reservations, we were told they had a hayride to the tube drop site service... Sadly, it was canceled, the office didn't really help us, but we luckily asked a seasonal neighbor to drop us off, which they gladly did. Otherwise, most of the sites are pull-through & we asked to be placed in a location that doesn't flood (per previous reviews). The gravel site was mostly level & the overall size of the site was large, comparatively to other campgrounds (FN29). There are train tracks running next to the grounds, but only saw 1 train pass. We didn't use the restrooms/showers, but they seriously need to be updated (no doors in ladies room) & they are sparse. We checked out the 'swimming lake' & we wouldn't swim there, it needs a fountain or aeration of some sort. We did order pizza from the restaurant & it was pretty good. Our 2 border collies enjoyed meeting the other doggie residents. We didn't use the dump station, but it looks easy to use as long as there aren't too many cars parked in the lot. There is a gate/card system & a $5 deposit. All in all we enjoyed our stay & would come back.
Date of Stay: July, 2011
We came here for a weekend with our 2 border collies. Check-in was fast & the graveled (but even) site was easy to back into (LV1). We didn't use the pool, but it looked inviting. Bathrooms were some of the nicest, cleanest, least mildew smelling ever! Air conditioned & exaust fans also!! It even had hollyhock around the outside. It was open house this weekend, so there were new trailers to view & activities. WiFi was non existent, but was able to hop on someone's unlocked hotspot. This resort is more geared towards the seasonal, as there aren't enough open sites together for our normal group of 10. But, full hook-up is nice. They also said you can tent camp, but you need your own site. They had a nice, large clubhouse, modest store (nearest grocery Pacemakers 8 mi. away), rec room & 21 & over room! Locked gate after 9, but they give you pass code. We didn't use the dump. We intended on tubing from the Sugar River Forest Preserve to the camp, but hard rains/flood warnings blew our plans. We would come back.
Date of Stay: July, 2011
We came here for the 4th of July weekend with a group of 8 other travel trailers. The road down to the office is very steep. Sites are grass, but mostly even. More seasonal sites than weekenders. There was no sewer hook-up & 4 days cut it close for capacity. Our sites backed up to the Kishwaukee River, which was not buggy. You can rent a tube at the office for $20 ($15 deposit returned), drive up river & enjoy a 3 hour meander back to the campground. Canoeing nearby also. Bathrooms were clean, but very old & need updating. The showerhouse by office was not as moldy smelling as the ones in the middle of the grounds. Fans need to be installed. Wi-Fi was not working or very weak where we were. Only USCellular & Nextel phone service, everyone else had to drive up the hill to get service. Office personnel were polite & interacted with guests. Dump station was easy to get to. We'd come back.
Date of Stay: September, 2010
We've camped all over the park, but would recommend the rear area of the park quieter, & more spacious. Nicely grassed areas, level parking areas, shade for tents, sun for satellite people. Staff was beyond friendly, bathrooms were all clean & the ones by the office are air conditioned! Showers were clean & hot or cold whatever you felt like. There are nature trails to walk through & playgrounds for the kids. We're NOT kid folks, so sometimes the pool area can get a bit crazy.. Any thoughts about having 'Adult Swim'?? We're going back this Memorial day, but also made our reservations for Wine fest in September! I would recommend this campground & will continue to go there ourselves!
Date of Stay: August, 2010
Pros. Nearby to everything in the Dells. Rates are reasonable. Pool (w/too many children). Coffee was good. Friendly staff. Cons. Bathrooms are constantly clogged or have no paper. The showers (all 5 of them) are always jammed, unless you shower at night. But, that's the only time you'll get a hot shower! They were kept relatively clean though. Sandy/weedy type vegetation which got everywhere. Not many pull through lots and grassy areas aren't that even. The lots are very close together, glad we had a large group. One year they wanted us to wear wristbands (for security they said). I'm allergic, we pulled all ours off after getting to site. Children driving golfcarts and other motorized things. No, no, no. Management should have stopped that. They did remove a large group of campers for their loud 'thump-thump' music though. Not many trees and they tried to plant some, but they are installed incorrectly (I'm an arborist). They most likely will not make it. To sum up. Would I go back? Sure, if the other Dells campgrounds are full.