First, in reading previous reviews, I dont think we are all referring to the same place. The campground located atthe address abve is a private campground and canoe livery. When I say read carefully, I am referring to their website. When they said pristine,I thought they meant clean. I think now they meant untouched...as in unimproved and uncleaned.
We arrived about 7:30pm and were anxious to set up before dark. We had reserved online and thought check in would be a breeze. We checked in at the livery where the scant staff were moreinterested inthe canoes. It was a full 20 minutes before we got someone's attention. We were told that she didnt have our reservation (despite our printed confirmation page) nd that there were no "reservation specialists" at that site. We were sent 15 miles up the road to their other campground where we were told they were filling fast (holiday weekend) butthey would find us a spot. That spot was about half a mile down a muddy, pot-holed ("pristine") path along a "river bank" (not sure it was a river...looked more like a drainage ditch...notmuch river in it) to a spot that looked freshly mowed but completely unimproved. We stated when making our reservation that we had a large tent. The spot we were given wasnt large enough to pitch our tent (never mind that it was neither flat nor level nor free of debris) much less accommodate a picnic table or fire ring. Those who were there were parking in the tall grass opposite their sites. I am certain that as more people came in, they just mowed further down the way. It was almost unpassible for cars...we have 4wd and it was uncomfortable driving. Had we taken that site, we would have had to walk 1/4 - 1/2 miles go a porta john, or drive nearly a mile back to the shower house. Fortunately, we had the owners cell number and were able to talk to him. He told us to drive the 15 miles back to the livery and he would find us a site there.
This new site was also located down a muddy, bumpy path, also small and unlevel,but large enough to accommodate us. we finally started setting up at 9 pm. I think ours was the smallest site there. It was bordered in the back by the woods, on the left by another site, infront by logs lining the road, and on the right by logs, rocks (that may have been the firepit,but it was overgrown with plants. Setting up at night and just getting around was dangerous - we were constantly tripping over something or stepping in holes.
By daylight I could see where they had taken thenice pics for their website. There was a beautiful open grassy area with several large trees across from us. But even these were unimproved...same muddy road in, same unlevel ground for pitching tents. I am still not sure where they toook the pics of the campers by the river - I only saw a dried up ravine.
As for facilities, they had one bath house 1/4 mile walk up.the muddy rutted road by the livery. It had 4 separate rooms, each with a toilet, sink and shower, but no shower curtain, no hooks, and no bench for your clothes or towels. I had to put everything in the sink to keep it dry while I showered. One shower worked well - one only trickled out. I didnt try the others. The bathrooms were dirty - muddy floors, full of bugs, constantly wet. They were used not only by the campers, but by the steady stream of canoers. From my observation, they were "cleaned" (by college-aged guys) once a day.
The owner is a nice young guy who genuinely loves what he is doing and where he lives (on site). He has a young vibrant staff that seem to enjoy their work (mostly at the livery). But they havea different idea of camping than our family. We dont expect the ritz, but based on their own website I expected much more. They shouldnt try to make the place out to be something it isnt.
We did canoe with them and it was a nice ride (the drive there as a little scary!). We didnt see all the rock formations we really came to see...we discovered one quite by accident and too late to fully enjoy it. If thats what you are interested in seeing, stay at the state park and talk to a ranged about how to get to the good stuff.
- Also Known As:
- Hocking Hills Campground Ohio/Logan