First of all,avoid loop 5 if you want space and ANY sense of privacy! I read all these glowing things about this place and carefully placed our reservation, and made a huge point to my family about how large the site would be and how perfect the camping would be for us. Then we get there, and the site is smaller than what we ar e used to, there is no place to wash dishes, and the sites around us are LOADED with extra cars. One site consistently had FIVE cars there at night. Clearly people were coming into the park after hours and camping with family or friends. I mentioned this to the management, and for one night they policed the front gate, and for that night there were fewer cars. The next night, there was no one at the front gate, and the same cars returned. it was a parking lot!! I have never had such a situation at a State Park a campground, and I have done tons of camping around North America in state and national parks. The bathrooms in area 5 were not terribly cleaned or maintained, but the showers in area 2,3,4 were fine. We looked at area 4 and found many sites that would have been much better, being larger, and not overrun with cars and other vehicles, and with some privacy. Then on our day of departure, which was yesterday, we had the most amazingly intrusive experience I have ever had at any campground. There were people with bull horns and microphones all over our area, apparently organizing some sort of large camp event. There were lots of buses, other vehicles, and endless LOUDNESS from the bull horns, walkie talkies and the PA system they seemed to have so installed. This all happened on a Saturday MORNING in August! It was a totally inappropriate way to treat campers- they could have found another way to do this for their kid camps, or at the very least warned their camper GUESTS of what was coming. Loop 5 was probably the most affected, and there aren't that many sites there (one of the reasons I reserved a site there 6 months in advance to the day, in addition to glowing remarks others on tripadvisor made about that area). It was unpleasant, and surely took a great deal away from feeling like you were in the woods.
All that being said, I would still consider Returning to Nickerson, but to loop 4, since the Nickerson Park location is great. I Would hope that things there might be handled a bit better, and I am both amazed and disappointed that our experience last week was marred by the things I mentioned. We enjoyed our family time together over the fire and sleeping outside, and being on the shore despite the shortcomings I have mentioned. It simply fell short of many expectations.
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