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wallace
03-08-2007, 08:45
Iím looking for suggestions for a location for family camping in July.

We have been doing 10 day trips to Shenandoah National Park. (Big Meadows, Loft Mountain), staying in a large tent and working out of the car. I would like to try some place different this year. We live around Philadelphia. The trip to SNP is a 5 to 6 hour ride.

We will be traveling with a 12 year old and a dog. We would like to be able to hike. Access to swimming would be nice but not necessary. Any suggestions?

Lone Wolf
03-08-2007, 08:53
Come to the Damascus, Va. area. There are several national forest campgrounds and a campground at Grayson Highlands State Park. Plenty of AT hiking access from all these campgrounds. Also The Virginia Creeper Trail is a great bicycle ride starting at Whitetop Station and ending in Damascus. An easy 17 miles. Plenty of swimming opportunities in the area too. Also tubing.

ASUGrad
03-08-2007, 10:38
Roan Mountain has a campground. We've spent some time at the pool which is cold 365 days a year. North Carolina is full of campgrounds.

hiker33
03-08-2007, 13:14
I highly recommend "The Best in Tent Camping" series from Menasha Ridge Press (http://www.menasharidge.com/default.htm). There are volumes for most of the eastern states, and we've always found the Smoky Mountains and Carolinas volumes to be reliable guides to good campgrounds. Most are in national parks and forests.

Alligator
03-08-2007, 13:25
The Monongahela National Forest (WV) has a variety of outdoor activities available, hiking, biking, paddling, and includes several wilderness areas.

I don't think the AT touches it though.

Ender
03-08-2007, 13:51
Pretty much every state will have what you're looking for, but I seem to remember PA having some decent campgrounds near the AT.

No specific suggestions though... sorry.

Brrrb Oregon
03-08-2007, 14:09
With a kid as old as twelve, maybe you can switch gears this year and leave the car behind. At that age, living on less isn't such a big deal and can be a lot of fun. Starting to learning that new skill set can be a great boon to the confidence at that age, too. You might think about stitching together some two or three-day jaunts, and see how it goes.

The Snowman
03-08-2007, 20:27
Delaware Water Gap is always a nice place for family camping trips. Great hikeing and you have the river for water sports.

wallace
03-09-2007, 09:07
Thanks for the suggestions. I'm looking into some of them now.

LW - I was looking at Beartree and Highland State Park. Which would you do?

Alligator - Do you have any specific campground recomendations in MNF? There were quite a few on their web site.

Lone Wolf
03-09-2007, 09:14
Thanks for the suggestions. I'm looking into some of them now.

LW - I was looking at Beartree and Highland State Park. Which would you do?.

they're both great areas. grayson highlands offers more hiking.

Small Steps
03-09-2007, 09:16
IMHO I donít think you can get much better than Great Smoky Mountains National Park. If you feel real adventures you can hit Gatlinburg for a day.

wallace
03-09-2007, 09:30
GSMNP sounds great but this trip includes a dog. Dogs aren't allowed on the trails in GSMNP.

sparky2000
03-09-2007, 09:50
Go south from Boiling Springs, PA. on the AT.

booney_1
03-12-2007, 10:38
Bear tree, just outside of Damascus, has a nice swimming area on a lake. It is just across the road from the camping area. The Virginia Creeper trail is really nice. Easy bike rentals in town. Easy shuttle to top of mountain.

Alligator
03-12-2007, 11:13
Thanks for the suggestions. I'm looking into some of them now.

LW - I was looking at Beartree and Highland State Park. Which would you do?

Alligator - Do you have any specific campground recomendations in MNF? There were quite a few on their web site.I stayed at Lake Sherwood once and would recommend that. A lot of the campgrounds on the Mon are Forest Service, which means they tend to be more primitive, often lacking bathhouses. This link (http://www.fs.fed.us/r9/mnf/rec/rog_campgrounds/campground_alpha.htm) has campgrounds listed by level of development. The WV state parks tend to have more accomodations and on site recreation, sometimes hotels and cabins.

Peaks
03-12-2007, 16:51
When we lived outside Philly, we often took vacations in New York State. Several nice state parks, plus of course, the Adirondacks.

LeeF
03-12-2007, 17:34
Try the Black Mountain Campground at the base of Mount Mitchell. It will be cool and comfortable even in July. You can swim in the South Toe River if you can take the cold. Its a great base camp. You can day hike in a different direction each day. The signs about bears are for real.

wallace
03-13-2007, 12:03
Looks like I'm going to try Grayson Highlands. It will give me a chance to check out Damascus as well. Thanks for all the suggestions.

Lone Wolf
03-13-2007, 12:04
Looks like I'm going to try Grayson Highlands. It will give me a chance to check out Damascus as well. Thanks for all the suggestions.

very good choice. you won't be disappointed