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Like most Iowa state parks, no sewer or water hook ups at site. Not super level. Near red rock, but cannot see the lake from the campground, cannot access the bike trail directly from campground. Wooded area, no trails or anything special in the park. Showers flooded the bathroom and had to push the button every 30 seconds to keep the water going.
Around this area there are many Marion county campgrounds that have better sites and amenities.
Nice park, a little run down, but there's a new park ranger in town who is trying to fix it up. New rental cabin almost finished, clean beach, boat ramp and fishing. Clean spacious bathrooms, nice playground for the kids and a really cool equestrian section. No store, no wood so get what you need before you get here.
Great spot by a small lake in Stephen's State Forest. Didn't have a soul around us for the night we camped here (late September). Temps were around 43 degrees at night. Fire pits have nice swinging grates on them. There was a picnic table at each spot as well. We were in Campsite 007. Would have given 5 stars but you will hear train horns blowing all night at this location.
We went in the chillier months so the park definitely was not at its most scenic as it probably usually is. The hikes throughout the woods were quite nice and eventually loop around at least the one we were on did). They have a ginormous and steep boat landing with a large parking lot. The water looked pretty nice, although is was quite low at the time. The best part about the trip was the eagles. We must have been there at just the right time, because lined all through the trees along the lakes edge were eagles upon eagles. I'd say we saw about 70 bald eagles perched in the tress. It was really a beautiful sight. Aside from the park, it's pretty close to pella, which is a nice historic Dutch town. Good food and bars there to check out! Would visit again, but when it's warmer!
We arrived on Thursday evening. After a short debate we opted to pay the extra money for an electric site - based solely on the fact that the water wasn't turned on in the basic site loop (we later discovered it was also off at the swimming beach).
At a guess the basic sites aren't used much as they seemed less kept than the electric sites. Finding a place to pitch a tent in the electric loop was a challenge but we did find one that had enough level grass. Site 4 - close to the water spigot and a modest walk to the bathroom/showerhouse.
Though it was definitely busier come Friday night not all the sites were full and most seemed to be retired or semi-so with grandkids. No party atmosphere - which is what we happened to be looking for this trip.
A nice, quiet place to spend a weekend away with Amish country store a close distance by.
The Woodburn unit in Stephens State forest has great hiking trails leading to very primitive camping locations. The site did have a nice picnic table and fire pit. A great place to disconnect and go off grid for a little while