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“Very nice campsite, but they do have black bears, which are alllegedly afraid of humans...”

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North-South Lake Campground
NY
Level Contributor
32 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Very nice campsite, but they do have black bears, which are alllegedly afraid of humans...”
Reviewed July 12, 2011

but i was a bit afraid to find out if this was true. No incidents, but we heard on the morning of our 2nd day that a bear was seen at 2 sites near to ours. While driving out of the campground I saw one crossing the road. Other than walking around at night in constant terror, the campsites are terrific and the park is very beautiful. The lake is wonderful and our site was just near a stream, exactly like we thought from the map on the reservation website.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ggman007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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94 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
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English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 1, 2011

This campground is awsome we try to get up a few times a year. It's a nice family campground great for children alot of stuff to do around the sites. Alot of good hiking trails amazing views just give yourself
some extra time when hiking exspecailly with children don't let them run ahead alot of cliffs . Make sure you bring your bug stray! Also check out platt rock it's a nice spot. Good views and cool cravings in the rocks from the 1800's. Overall had a good time. Clean bathrooms hot showers, sites are clean just need some new fire pits in some of the sites. But overall would highly recommend !

  • Stayed May 2011
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank Nikki10704
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bronx, NY
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed October 12, 2010

This is the second time ur family has camped at north south lake, and we have loved both times. The camp was quiet even though it was about 70% full. I highly recommend site 11. It is nice and private, with only one side having neighbors. Best of all, it is set on a creek. It may dry up in the summer, but it was perfect since we have had a lot of rain. Falling asleep to the bubbling brook was amazing. Kaaterskill Falls was also more dramatic after all the rain!

We usually go for small, less popular campgrounds, but this one is a personal favorite. Just be strategic about choosing a site, and avoid holiday weekends, as I hear they get noisy.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank troubledeyes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Princeton, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 4, 2010

I've been camping all my life. It's always been a fun, relaxing experience. All I need from a campsite is a flat, soft spot to pitch a tent and a nice fire ring to sit around and cook. (I can't speak to the daytime activities of North-South Lake, as we were there from 5 pm until 11 am checkout.)

I made my reservation with Reserve America, for two nights. My friend called the reservation line, concerned about the 9 pm check in curfew. We were coming from central Jersey after work on a Friday so it was going to be tough to make it in on time. We were assured we would be able to get into the camp after 9 pm, as long as we called ahead on our way up.

An hour away from home and 2+ hours away from the campground, I called the camp office. No admittance after 9 pm, with no exception. When I explained that we had been told otherwise, they said that Reserve America has no right fto give out those conditions. I let the woman in the office know that we would only be about a 1/2 hour late, so could she please just make an exception, as we have no other options for the night and were going to be a long way from home? No go. In fact, she was downright rude.

We had to scramble to find a new place to stay for the night. [The Rip Van Winkle Campground served us well. The owner even told my boyfriend that he would wait up for us (until 10) and come to check us in when we called the phone at the entrance gate. Definitely more a place for "luxury" camping, as were the only ones there in a tent (and we didn't know about the Halloween party weekend we had driven right into :) but it had what we needed for the night.]

The next morning, on our way to our day hike, I called North-South Lake to confirm I still had my reservation for that night, at least. The woman at the desk asked me, in an annoyed tone, "You are coming, tonight, right?"

We finally pulled in around 6 pm on night 2 of my reservation. They had no explanation or apology, other than "yeah, we've had this problem before with Reserve America." Needless to say there was no monetary refund, either.

In addition to the hassle, the campsites are very small. (Loop 7, 200) There were 4 of us on the trip, and one campsite was really tight. Our two (small) cars barely fit. The "fire ring" (as they promote them on their website) is really a small fire place. And the ground is flat, but covered in rocks. By far the hardest ground I've ever tried to sleep on. Even after clearing the area as best we could, and sleeping on a sleeping pad, it was painful.

I'm not too familiar with this area, but there seem to be plenty of campsites to choose from. I'll never visit North-South Lake again.

Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
Helpful?
7 Thank JerseyQ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed September 11, 2010

I've been to North South Lake quite a few times over the last 5 years. I can't think of a bad thing to say about this campground. Very clean and comfortable for tent campers like us. The grounds are excellent for hiking and just enjoying the great outdoors. The sites are spread out nicely and the view of the mountains from the lake is fantastic!

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
4 Thank heavy11421
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NY
Level Contributor
49 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 271 helpful votes
Reviewed July 11, 2010

Just got back from North South State Park. We really liked it and would recommend it to others. We've tented at quite a few places, and other than Nickerson (out on Cape Cod), we have felt a drive to return to a particular place. We plan to return to North South. My DH actually commented at one point that the layout and feel reminded him of Nickerson. The majority of sites here are spacious and offer a fair amount of privacy - even the sites on the inside of the loops are much more private than at a typical campground (especially ones this large).

Based on a previous reviewer's comments, we stayed in Loop 1, site 11. It was quite private - didn't have a site across from it, backed to the stream and woods, and on one side had total "green screen". I didn't love how we could clearly see the campers in site 9, but in fairness to the campground that's more my issue than theirs! LOL It wasn't that bad; I'm just neurotic on privacy! Unfortunately, this has been a dry season, so the stream was really just a series of water puddles rather than any running water. It was still very pretty, but DH didn't like how many people walked along it as a trail.

If we go back in the spring (during what's typically a wet season), we'd be interested in having this site again (in hopes that the stream would be flowing), but we'd probably skip it otherwise. We drove around and, in general, are most interested in staying in Loop 6 since it is just a short walk from there to the beach area and playground - much more convenient with the kids (we have 4). If I weren't going with the children, I'd probably opt for Loop 7 since the sites were more private and it seemed like the quietest part of the park. (As an aside, while our loop wasn't particularly loud, once Friday late afternoon / early evening came, it was very "active" - almost a shock to my senses after how quiet it had been.)

All of the sites in Loop 1 are generally very good (even 21, which is the site next to the bathroom!), but avoid 13, 14, and 15 as you'd have campers from Loop 2 butting up against you. Sites 0, 2, and 5 are up against the marshy part of the lake and have trails leading down to it. They're very pretty but short and small, so you'd have trouble with a big tent or much equipment. We also especially liked sites 19 and 22.

We didn't find anything especially appealing (or terrible) about any of the sites in Loops 2, 3, or 4.

In Loop 5, our picks are 138, 145, 146, and 149.

In Loop 6, our picks are 169, 171, 173, and 179. Site 171 is right on the lake. Site 179 is essentially lakeside but it didn't seem to open right up to it. Sites 169 and 173 seemed to be very private.

In Loop 7, our picks are 202, 204, 211, 212, 214, 217, and 218. Avoid sites 201, 201, and 205 because the way the loop turns, they all back up against one another. All on the exterior of the loop are nice, though, in that there's just woods behind them.

Note this is definitely a tenter's campground. I didn't see any RVs and I saw maybe just a couple of trailers or pop-ups. Beaches are nice, trails are nice, Catskill Mountain House overlook is amazing, ice cream truck is sweet. Boat rentals are expensive - can't rent them by the hour, only by the day (for $25!). No programs for kids due to budget cuts. Stop at the falls on 23A at some point - you'll feel like you're risking your life walking along the mountain road to get to the trail head, but then it's a nice 1/2 mile hike up to the bottom of the falls - we spent about an hour up there and loved it.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
30 Thank CottageSpirit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed October 8, 2009

We visited this campground in late September with our two young children (1yo and 4yo) and had a really great time. We were on Loop 4 and found it really comfortable for car camping. Across the road from our campsite, there was a water spigot, and a short walk away were very clean bathrooms, showers, and a facility for washing dishes (very handy!). Elsewhere in the campground, there was a playground and lots of other activities -- hiking, fishing, swimming (in summer) -- that were very nice. The leaves were just beginning to change when we visited, which was beautiful. Our one complaint was probably our own fault -- it was very cold at night and we weren't 100% prepared for that. The good thing was that they sell firewood right at the entrance to the campground, which is very handy. I should also note that there's a grocery store and other supplies not far away, should you realize, once you've got there, that you've forgotten something.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank FreeRangePamela
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about North-South Lake Campground

Property: North-South Lake Campground
Address: County Route 18, Haines Falls, NY 12436
Location: United States > New York > Haines Falls
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Haines Falls
Number of rooms: 219
Also Known As:
North-South Lake Campground Hotel Haines Falls

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