Date of Stay: September, 2016
Our second time to visit Mounds SRA at Brookville Reservoir. We stayed in the FHU section again, and it was fairly full. The rest of the park (electric only) was sparsely populated in mid-September. Electricity was out for about 3 hours on Sunday morning, they got it fixed. Water was out for a while, too, 'cause someone backed over a water spigot and it needed dug out to repair. Service was fairly prompt in correcting these issues. Even still, water pressure is just so-so. Lots of OTA television channels from both Cincinnati and Dayton, fair 4GLTE signal on ATT. Sites are large and are asphalt paved for the parking area. There's a large open field in the interior of the FHU site section C, that's used by campers throwing footballs, playing soccer, etc. Overall, it's a pretty quiet campground (or, it was this weekend), and most of the campers/rvs there are pretty nice. Nobody was camping out of the back of a box truck. The shower houses were awful the first time we went there a couple years ago, but the state did some upgrades/updating to them, according to the DNR website. We didn't use them this time, so I can't say if they did or didn't work on them. The lake is nice (I caught a nice catfish ;-), but requires driving from the campground (unless you're a VERY ambitious hiker). The camp store is large and well stocked, interior roads in the park are wide and easily navigable. There are marinas for boat rentals in the area. Brookville is sort of a quaint old town, just a few miles away. Metamora was formerly a very touristy little village about 20 minutes away, but it has deteriorated over the last decade. Mounds is one of the few state parks in Indiana that has full hookup sites and paved pads. For that reason, we do like it, but $40 is too much, really, so that rates it only a 'satisfactory' for us, in terms of value.
Date of Stay: September, 2016
Typical state park, electric only sites. Interior roads are a bit narrow, and I wouldn't denote this park as big-rig friendly. Our site was fairly large, shaded and clean, but we saw others that were a bit smaller and had more sun. Our site was listed as accommodating a 35' camper, but I had to block the road to hook/unhook from our 30' TT. Sites are a sand base, so kick off your shoes before going back in the camper ;-) There is a dog-friendly beach area, but you have to hike over a sand dune to get to it. The regular beach area has adjacent parking, but is a short (and more level) walk from the campground. Office sells ice and firewood, but they were out of ice (for the next couple days...), and the firewood was a bit green. Check-in staffer was pleasant, we saw DNR foot patrolling the park a couple times, and we didn't experience any loud, raucous camp sites. It's mostly families and groups and, overall, a pleasant, relatively quiet place to stay. Pretty easy access, just a few miles off I-196. Overall, it's a satisfactory state park in a good location, with larger, pine and hardwood shaded sites. It's not a must-return park for us, but we'd consider it, if we're back in this area.
Date of Stay: August, 2016
Booked a "large" RV site 6months in advance, and checked in to a site that was about 25' wide. Our receipt said that our site was 40' wide. We brought this to the office's attention, and they courteously moved us to a lakeview site, which was the same width, but the view was FANTASTIC. If you can fit into a 25'w site and don't mind getting to know your neighbors, get the lakeview site, it's worth it. Portions of the park have dirt roads which are not particularly well-maintained, but most of it has paved roads which are sufficient for navigation with RVs. Many FHU sites, OTA tv is fair (no cable). Wi-Fi is spotty (first site we were on it was great, on the lakeview site, not so good), and costs money to use, per day. Camp store is large and well-stocked, registration office has numerous agents for check-in. As mentioned in other reviews, this park is huge and has lots of check-in/check-out activity every day. The proximity to Mackinaw City, island ferry, the bridge, etc., is excellent, and the views of the lake, bridge and island from our site were worth the narrow site and the hassle of setting up twice, after the move. We'd go back here, and would select another lakeview site. Would have given it a '9', if the roads were a little better on that northwest section and if there were fewer weeds in the 'privacy' growth between sites. Other people have complained about the lone shower house, but we use our own shower, so that wasn't a big deal, but it is a bit of a hike from parts of the campground.
Date of Stay: August, 2016
Best thing about this place was the nearby town of Ionia, MI, with some interesting, old architecture and a still-surviving old downtown. Although the structures at the park (pool, shelter house, camp store/office, bath house) are clean and newer, everything else here is just 'average'. Gravel interior roads, sites were formerly gravel, but our site was mostly just grass, and an average distance from the neighbor's site. There is very little shade, but they do have some trees that will mature. They did have an ice cream counter, which was nice on the first night, but on the second night, we went to get a little treat about fifteen minutes before closing and the lights were off inside, and we heard the clerk announce to some kids that they "should not start playing video games, 'cause she was gettin' ready to close", so we took that as a sign that she'd already washed the ice cream scoops, too. Also, it was clear they didn't have any inside firewood storage, as when I asked if they had any dry firewood (it had rained buckets), I was soundly laughed at; shame on me for not knowing that they store all their firewood UNCOVERED. The place looked to be 50% seasonals (some VERY nice, some not so much...), and mostly locals, at that; lots of driving in and out by same vehicles. There are a LOT of kids, as the park sort of caters to that. On the plus side, cable is good, 4g LTE on ATT is good, good water pressure, the park is close to shopping, local restaurants, has easy access to interstate, interior roads are wide. So, weighing the good and the bad, it's just sort of 'average'.
Date of Stay: August, 2016
Concrete pads and patios, river front sites available, good OTA TV, good firewood for$5, Cicero is only 3mi for groceries and hardware, Koteewi park across the river has new features including zip line, some sites are larger than others so ask when you book. Our 32' TT was a bit snug on site 29. We visit this park at least once per year, when it's available, because it is full most weekends. It's busy, but quiet and with lots of FHU sites.
Date of Stay: July, 2016
Focusing on just the campground, and not the beautiful Monroe Lake property, this property just gets 'average', although it borders on poor. A prior review from years ago referenced bad roads and potholes inside the campground. Well, they're still there; the roads are terrible. This campground is old and tired, but it gets packed every weekend, because of the fact that it's adjacent to the lake. You'd think Indiana would spend some of the increased camping fees to fix the aging campgrounds. Many sites have some sort of lake access or lake view, and others have only a short walk to a nice view or access. The 2-cars per site rule isn't enforced, and some people are camping in horse trailers and box trucks. Many of sites are not level, so trust the online booking when it indicates slope. Our site was listed as 'gentle' slope, but it sloped front to back AND left to right. It's also referred to as a 'gravel' site, but this site (nor any others) hasn't seen fresh gravel in years. Some RV sites looked like tent-only to me. Our AC was having a hard time keeping up after the campground filled up, due to an overloaded electric system. I'm guessing that the electrical system gets overloaded, as many of the RV sites are used by 20-amp tent campers with multiple crock pots, lights, etc. For $30 for electric-only sites, this campground isn't a great value, but daggone-it, we'll go back because we love the lake. It is sort of fun to people-watch here, as it's sort of like going to the county fair. Things quieted down pretty nice after about 10pm, though, even on Saturday night, so even though it's a zoo during the day, you can still get some rest. There is a marina on the property for boat rentals and various basics and sundries, and a little larger store at the park entrance that sells fishing gear and beer/wine/groceries.
Date of Stay: May, 2016
Spent Mother's Day weekend here, as the park is close to "Mom", so she and Dad could come visit ;-) . Having grown up in this area, we remember Ceraland as a sort of 'crown jewel' of recreation areas, as it was formerly funded by, and for use by, Cummins employees and their families. It is now open to the public, and they sell annual memberships to use the pool, playgrounds, go-kart track, shelter houses, fitness center, etc. The campground is about at the level of state park standards in Indiana these days; in the fact that some sites need some gravel (and a couple could use some fill dirt, and bath houses are older but kept pretty clean. All in all, it's a pretty fair value for a full hookup site. There are a few seasonals, but they're pretty nice and well-kept. Most of the sites will require a bit of leveling, but not too bad. There is a lake, and there are lake-front sites available, but not if you have dogs. The "premium" lake-front sites are in a designated 'no pets' area. Also, the signs and literature state there's no alcohol allowed in the park, which probably cuts down on the loud, intoxicated parties, and that's OK. We just kept ours inside the RV ;-). This weekend was pretty quiet, and the park was less than half full. There is a minimal camp store on the property, and they sell essentials, including firewood, but the city of Columbus is 10 minutes away for more options.
Date of Stay: October, 2015
Summit Lake Reprise We reviewed Summit Lake in 2013, and were not terribly impressed with the park facilities. Our recent visit indicated that things are looking up! The electrical problem has been remedied; campground 'A' has been completely re-wired with all new boxes and 50a service. The bathrooms are still mediocre, but they've been cleaned up, a fresh coat of paint, and other minor improvements have been made to spruce up the facilities. The showers still need better drainage and they pretty much drain into the hallway floor, but that's an engineering issue, not cleaning. DNR staff was walking through the campground on Friday and Saturday night, introducing themselves as security, and indicating they'd be on property until 4am. They were personable fellas and it was nice to know that staff was 'minding the store'. In addition, DNR vehicles regularly passed through the campground. We've noticed this trend at other state parks this year, so there might be a new directive in order from the state. The trails are easy (although described as moderate), the lake has many options for fishing from the bank, and staff shared that resurfacing the interior roads is on the horizon, as well as new gravel at the campsites, and a re-wiring of the electrical in campground 'B'. Seems like they're intent on upgrading this property. Campground A is mostly level and open, and the sites have shared, fresh water posts (two to a post). We needed 75' of hose to connect, but it's nice to have a fresh water hookup at a state park in Indiana. Campground B is more rolling, and few sites in B would accommodate more than a pop-up or tent. We are pleased with our recent visit to Summit Lake and will return.
Date of Stay: September, 2015
We were formerly hesitant to visit Raccoon Lake, as it formerly had a reputation for the 'party' park, but were were most pleasantly surprised and comfortable during our stay. There was a group of noisy adolescents across from us on a 'retreat' gathering (about six sites) that were only moderately supervised, but I blame the adults, not the DNR. They quieted down pretty well in the evening and only ran bicycles into my truck on two occasions... :-/ The restrooms and shower houses have been updated (very few of Indiana's older state parks can say the same...), the property and grounds is kept very nicely; DNR staff can be regularly seen driving through the campgrounds, cleaning the restrooms, etc. Our site was huge, on an outer loop with a copse of trees behind and beside us. Many of the sites, however, are not level and are suitable for tent camping only. The campground listed the pad at our site as 'level', but it slopes downward, front to back. Compared to many of the other sites, though, ours was more level than most. Many of the sites are pretty roomy and many are paved, but there are those on interiors of some loops that are pretty close to your neighbor. Overall, though, pretty typical state park set-up. There is a nice camping store on site (although only open during high season; they were open the weekend only during the last weekend in September), many boat ramps plus a marina with rentals. There are a couple larger stores with gas and fuel right outside the park entrance, plus a bar/restaurant that other campers stated was pretty good fare. Several nice bank fishing areas, shelter houses with lake views, and the hiking trails are great. Most trails are fairly easy to navigate, and connect well to each other. Walking to the boat ramp is a short distance from the campground, and it's only about a mile (or so) to walk to the beach area, using the trails. We will visit here again!
Date of Stay: August, 2015
Really mediocre park, in a really HUGE state park that requires you to drive everywhere (fishing, marina, pool, etc...) you want to go. The campground is large and the sites are well-spaced, but poorly maintained. We were at one of the few full hook-up sites, and the lid was broken off of the sewer connection, so that's open the whole time we're there. We camped on a Sunday and Monday (so there weren't many other campers), and staff decided to mow on Monday. Without regard to stirring up all the dust (it's been dry...), they keep mowing right on the sites that were occupied! Really? I think perhaps they should have mowed less and sprayed for bugs more. On Monday night, the clouds of gnats were so pervasive throughout the park that you couldn't walk through the campground without getting absolutely covered with gnats. Huge clouds of 'em. It was awful. Then, one evening, I ran to the camp store to get a couple little firestarters. I arrived at 4:55 (they close at 5), and met the attendant on the sidewalk who informed me that she'd already locked the door, so... I'm out of luck. She was literally 2 steps from the front door, with the keys still in her hand, and was closing 5mins early. There are only a few folks in the campground this Monday, so I'm sure she'd been busy all day and was ready to retire... We had reservations for this park on our return trip for two nights (we thought it'd be nicer), and we forfeited the money to stay someplace else. Not really convenient to the interstate, not surrounded by things to see and do, and not a great park.
Date of Stay: August, 2015
Stayed here for four nights, and couldn't have been more pleased with the grounds, staff, amenities and cleanliness of the property. When we arrived, the owner drove me in a golf cart to preview our site, and when I expressed concern about the width (we have opposing side slide-outs), he checked their availability and moved us to a more accommodating site. And did so pleasantly, without making us feel like we inconvenienced them in any way. This was our first trip (been camping three+ years) in our camper for over 3 days, and we were really pleased that we chose Gettysburg Campground over the other choices. The camp store is nice, also, and sells hand-dipped ice cream, too! Everything at the property is well-kept and clean, every staff member we encountered was pleasant and helpful, there are no 'junk' seasonals on the property (junk seasonals are one of the reasons we usually avoid private-owned campgrounds...), and it's really close and convenient to downtown Gettysburg and the battlefield areas. OK, so there's only one thing, and it's one of those 'first-world problem' things: the cable signal could have used a boost, as the picture on the television was pretty fuzzy, I assume from being too widely distributed without boost. That's the only thing I can find that wasn't just spot-on. Thank you, Gettysburg Campground for an excellent experience!
Date of Stay: June, 2015
I hesitate to write a stellar review for this campground, as it might mean that more people will go there. ;-) There are only 32 sites, all with water and electric. It's a newer park (in comparison to most state parks), and the sites are so large and nice; finely crushed limestone bordered by buried landscape timbers are the base for each site. Most of them were actually excavated, and the extra dirt was used to create small mounds between some of the sites. We had THE premium site in the property, all of about 15 steps to a little, stone 'beach' area from our site, lot #21, which is huge. Every site is level, and each has a picnic table, lantern post and fire ring with cooking grate. Good and bad news- there is no OTA television, and ZERO cell signal on AT&T. Driving to the entrance to the campground you can get a slight signal. The state's web site says there is a small camp store on the property, but we were told no, that is incorrect. There is a pretty good little country store about 3 miles away that has groceries, hardware, bait, ice, gas, etc. (it's surprisingly large and well-stocked). Camp office sells firewood. Shower is the cleanest, nicest we've seen. Campground has an overnight mooring area for boats, and a public beach that you can walk to. It's a small, clean, quiet campground, on a beautiful lake. We rented a pontoon boat at the closest marina, which is a 30 minute drive (only 10 minutes from the campground across the lake, though). No fee to enter the park, as we're accustomed to in Indiana. The drive to get there is the worst part, as state roads in Kentucky are little more than most county roads in other areas. It's 45 minutes off the interstate on rolling, winding roads, but for us, it was worth the drive. We'll go back as soon as we can, but the lakefront sites are booked for months...!
Date of Stay: July, 2014
We're beginning to see a trend at the State Recreation Areas (SRAs), in that they are VERY busy in the summer and seeing lots of kids, boaters and tent campers are commonplace. There was nary a vacant site in the whole campground, and the enforcement of 2 cars per site was nil. Lots of folks with multiple cars, tents, boats, parties, etc. throughout. If you're looking for quiet seclusion, this ain't your place. However, if you're desirous of being surrounded by lots of activity, with a large beach, multiple bank fishing sites, decent size marina with boat rentals, and a fairly well-stocked camp store with groceries and essentials, you'll like Salamonie. Be wary, there are several camp sites that aren't particularly level, so trust the online booking service when they say 'moderate' or 'severe' grade; they're not kidding. Our 30' TT fit fine on lot 62, which was listed as having a slight slope. Many of the sites are full sun, but there is an area of shaded, more private sites. There are some premium, lakefront sites available, but only a few. Get 'em while they're hot- book well in advance. There are corner, pull-through sites on EVERY corner, so it makes the campground look even more full. As is the norm with most SRAs, the staff does a great job keeping the shower houses clean, but they are aging structures (old fixtures, peeling paint, etc) and are in need of remodeling. Easy access to beach and marina from campground, nice interpretive center, hiking trails and garden for viewing, OTA TV is pretty good including network channels, strong ATT 4G cellular signal. Fresh water fill station in our loop was a bit unhandy, and was essentially blocked by a campsite. The marina will deliver firewood to your campsite, and it's reasonably priced. The grounds are well-kept, the staff was friendly, and there's lots of outdoors to enjoy. We'll camp here again.
Date of Stay: June, 2014
Our first time at Hardin Ridge, and this is one of the natural beauty parks in Indiana. Folks around here point to Brown County SP as the most scenic, but Hardin Ridge gives it a run for its money, plus Hardin Ridge has access to Lake Monroe. This park has HUGE sites, private and wooded. It's a mix of tent campers and RV campers. It's very quiet, well-maintained, park staff is friendly, trails are nice, fishing is good. We really enjoyed it. Word to the wise, though: some of the sites have a LOT of slope and aren't really motorhome or big TT friendly. Trust the descriptions on the booking site, or call. We'd give it a '10' if there was a camp store or one close by. Gotta drive about 8 miles to get to a bait shop/convenience store/gas station. Over-the-air TV is sparse, cell signal (AT&T) is good. If you've got kids, the 'playground' is the woods and water. We visited nearby Paynetown SRA, and that's where the party is: bigger beach, rental marina, camp store, louder, more packed in, etc. If you want a quiet, back-to-nature experience (but also want clean restrooms and water/electric hookup sites available) this is your spot. We've already booked our next visit.
Date of Stay: May, 2014
Immaculately-maintained state park in rural southern Indiana, and one of the few that offers full hook-ups. When we were there, the main attraction (Rose Island- former historic hotel site) was closed due to renovation. The other feature of the park, the Potterstown Bridge, is a 3-mile hike with a significant grade to access. Given that trail has a 'rugged' rating in the park guide, we opted out of that sightseeing visit. There is access to the Ohio River, including an overlook platform, and a boat ramp, and picnic areas near the river. Fourteenmile Creek runs through the property, but it's 200-feet down a wooded cliff, so fishing in the creek isn't much of an option. There is no camp store on the property, so all supplies must be bought before entering the park. The campground is about 2 miles from the entrance to the park. Note to travelers: DO NOT TAKE SR160 from I65. GPS will take you that way if you're coming from the north. Unless you're pulling a small camper or pop-up, you will not want to take this road, especially in the dark (as we did...). It's a posted 'no-semis' road, and they mean it. However, the reason we give the park an '8' rating is that it is very clean, the sites are very large, and the restrooms are clean. The campground was nowhere close to being full, so it was quiet and nice to walk in the evenings. Met many nice folks, and there weren't packs of kids screaming around the roads on bicycles. Many of the sites are surrounded by woods, and filled with honeysuckle, so the aroma outside is really nice. The restrooms are clean, the staff is friendly, and the sites are spacious and nice. Oh, and the OTA television is good (all Louisville stations), and there's a strong 4G signal on ATT mobile. If we're in the area, we would camp here again.