Date of Stay: March, 2011 - $30.00
This county park should be identified as being in Arroyo City instead of Rio Hondo. It is a thin 1.5 mile long sliver of a park located at the very end of Route 2925. The park was created by Laguna Atascosa NWR leasing the land to Cameron County to enhance boating and fishing on the river. There is no vehicular or pedestrian access into the refuge from the park; the entrance is 17 miles away. The park is narrow, wide enough to contain RV sites along or near the Arroyo Colorado River (AKA Herlingen Ship Channel), one dead end road right by the RV sites out to the boat launches at the end of the road, and a trail that essentially follows the road. Ten of 35 sites are right on the water, ten more have a buffer that anglers use between the RV sites and the river, and 15 are located away from the water. This is a mult-use park and there's the rub: on weekends the place is heavily used by anglers, boaters, and pick nickers. In spite of reserved signs on the RV sites, we found a group using our reserved site and had to wait for them to pack up and leave. We had to clean up the beer bottle caps and old fishing gear left on the site. There was trash in the brush next to our site, and the bank behind was eroded substantially between us and the river. There appeared to be about 40 or 50 pickups with trailers parked at the boat launches during the day on Sunday and these continuously left the park well into the evening. On weekdays, there were only a few campers in the park, but the anglers started driving through the park promptly at 6:00 am to reach the boat launch. The toilets were stainless steel and lacked toilet seats. The urinal in the men room still had butts in it on Monday morning. The cost shown includes full hookups. There is only one small store in the “city” of Arroyo, and the next nearest store is in Rio Hondo. If we're in the area again, we'd try somewhere else. We camped at Adolph Thomae Jr. County Park in a Motorhome.
Date of Stay: April, 2009 - $14.00
My husband called to see if there were any spaces available at the last minute, and the young man said yes. He suggested we "reserve" it so no one would get the site before we drove down there. So we reserved the first night with a credit card. It took us about an hour to get there. When we got there, we paid with a check for the second night. When we arrived, we drove through the park and discovered that it was very crowded and very loud. The spaces were very small and the park itself was very small. We were undeterred as we had read a review that said the view of the dolphins in the arroyo was great. So we wanted to see for ourselves. In addition, we had read favorable reviews of kayaking in the area. When we got to our site, our table was covered with other campers' food and there was a man passed out on the table's bench. We had no desire to "move" these people from our spot, and we had no desire to wake up the man not knowing if he was drunk, so we drove back to the entrance and told the young man that we didn't want to stay. We were very disappointed. The young man said he could go run the man off, but we declined fearing retribution. The young man gave us our check back, but said he didn't know how to give us credit back on our card as he was a new employee. He said we'd have to call the park manager. We did, and he said he'd have to check into it and call us back. We waited and waited and waited, until we finally called him back. He quickly said that we could not have our money back since it was "reserved" and we didn't cancel in time but that we could have a "rain check". So I guess that if you reserve a space within a 24 hour window, you might as well "kiss" your money goodbye even if the site is unusable. I don't think we'll ever see our "rain check" as he made no attempt to tell us how to secure this rain check. We camped at Adolph Thomae Jr. County Park in a Travel Trailer.