the dyrt
THE BEST CAMPING NEAR
Canyon Falls, KENTUCKY
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Most Recent Canyon Falls Camping Reviews
Awesome

I've camped here many times with my kiddos and have always had a great time with no trouble

Great little state park

Try to stay in the front area if possible. Some of the sites in the back get muddy if it rains. Stay clear of site 13 & 15 as they tend to flood. All others are great.

Not for us!

Too much road noice. Area is low and when it rains the camping area and wet for days.

The place to stay in the Gorge

Always a great place to plot your adventure.

Not Good

Stayed at Middle Fork Oct 25, 26, 27 (Thu, Fri, Sat) although we were forced to pay for Sunday too because it was some kind of special weekend having to do with Halloween. IMO this is just a BS way to make more money. The majority of people who do the whole trick or treat and Halloween stuff, do it for kids, and those people most likely have to leave on Sun to go back home for school on Mon. So why be forced to pay for Sunday night?!
Our water spigot sprayed water everywhere when our hose was hooked up. They sent a plumber over who tried to fix it with a wrench and a propane torch which didn't help at all. Fortunately we had no neighbors so we hooked to the other sites spigot. It sprayed too. The next day the campground turned off all the water to the campground, brought in an excavator and were excavating a broken pipe elsewhere in the campground. They didn't bother to let anyone know they were turning off the water, there were probably 5 campers in the entire campground. I wonder if they are aware that if a hot water heater runs out of water, but the heating element stays on, that it can destroy the element?? Fortunately we were there when we ran out of water and turned our water heater off.
The light. The damn 30,000 watt LED security light that lights up the night like a spaceship coming in for a landing, 10 feet behind our site. Forget having the cozy campfire experience, it's like sitting in daylight when that sucker is blasting down on you. The dump station. You have to park your camper on the wrong side of the road, facing uphill into on-coming traffic to dump your tanks, the water spigot to hook up and flush your tanks wasn't working so no water. The girl working at the check-in booth was clueless, saying she "didn't know nuthin about it". And didn't offer to pick up the phone and find out if there was a way to turn the water on. In addition, because we were parked facing uphill our gray water tank wouldn't dump at all. We had to stop at another campground on our way home and pay to dump and flush our tanks.
Overall, this campground was a negative experience and we will not be back.

Awesome campground for climbers

Miguel’s is a great place to camp if you are climbing in the Red River Gorge. I have stayed here many times and really enjoy it. Great campground with awesome people. It offers so many things such as a basketball court, quite heated areas, covered cooking, bathrooms, etc. I highly recommend if your in the area.

Best family trips every year

Myself and my family have traveled to this campground for as long as I can remember. Have many great memories and loved the trails to the amphitheatres to over look the cliffs. Plus one of them we have our initials carved into the rock. Best memories I have.

Beautiful in the fall

I have camped here in the spring and summer. This was my first trip in fall. The weather was wet and cold, but it couldn’t take away from the experience. The campsite that I was on was a double.(A30). It has electric, no water or sewage on the spot. We had 2 campers on the site with plenty of room. One is 37 ft and the other is 24 ft. There was plenty of downed trees to cut up. You should bring a bow saw. We also brought some wood. We were close to the water and trails. All of the teens that were with us had a ball(hiking, biking, basketball, and fishing). Sites are all clean and level and the bathrooms are clean.

Peaceful, beautiful, a must visit!!

This is an amazingly well maintained, beautiful campground. The sites are on the lake and are large and flat. Awesome views and a tranquil lake for kayaking, canoeing or swimming. This is a must visit park!

Something for everyone

The campground and general area is beautiful with a welcoming vibe. It can get a little crowded in the campground at certain times due to holidays but it's not hard to lose the crowd. Everyone is always extremely kind and treat you like family. The list of activities is almost endless……. boating, fishing and anything else you can do on the lake, trails in every direction, secluded spots on and off the lake for picnics, camping or whatever, stargazing, pool, wildlife everywhere, games and general activities at the campground, community center, dam, parks, and it's really close to town in case you want to check it out. Make sure you check out the Jenny Wiley theater if you can, they are beyond talented.

First to Review
Awesome Lake

Very clean and fun lake, close to campgrounds, boat rentals, marina, and hiking close.

Quiet in Fall

Went camping here in October. Campground was nice. Bathrooms were not very well kept. It has a beach with swimming and it was nice. We kayaked on the lake and while it was enjoyable there was a lot of trash in the lake. The people working while we were there were great. Not a lot going on here. We had to drive to get to a place to hike. That was fun. We probably will not return to this camp ground in the future.

Beautiful and perfectly secluded yet safe

I have only camped here once, but when I did it was an awesome experience! We felt safe but we also felt secluded, as one usually prefers to be while camping for only one night. Amazing stargazing and mountain views not too far away, and not too difficult to find the sites. Would most definitely do it again!

Will definitely return here!

What a nice quiet secluded spot. Such a friendly staff, reasonable prices, and well maintained campground. We spent a great day in the river and an even better night in our hammocks!

My all time favorite Getaway spot!

This is my all time favorite campground. (When I’m not looking for a lot of amenities). This campground is actually a veteran owned boating rental/shuttle service with an attached campground. It’s very spacious, I’ve camped on holiday weekends and never had other campers within 100 ft of my site. I’ve also been on weekends where I was the only camper there. The campsites are fairly primitive, only including a fire ring and a nice picnic table. They do not have any water or electric hookups and no cell service, which is all a plus in my opinion. But they do have a trash bin and portable-potty’s scattered around and they sell firewood on site. Oh and the grass is always maintained. There is so much room and there are a variety of “types” of campsites. By that I mean there are wide open spaces, sites in the trees, sites with sandy floors, etc. The entire campground runs alongside the river bank, so you can put in your own kayak/canoe or rent one from them. I just love this place. It is super family friendly, they have an 11pm quiet time and strict alcohol policy. The owners and all staff are the friendliest people I’ve ever met. Two of the owners know me and my friends by name and strike up convo with us every time we’re there and we’ve only been 3-4 times a year for the past 3 years. This campground is only a two mile paddle to the infamous jump rock and swim hole. Also, you are just 10 minutes from slade, where you will find Miguel’s, (the best pizza you’ll ever eat), gas stations, and cell signal. You’re also only 20-30 minutes away from Muir Valley, an excellent rock climbing destination. And if you have made It this far, I don’t mind sharing with you that if you wade out into the water about 15ft upstream of the boat launch, the river is relatively flat with a sandy bottom that is about 5’ at normal water level. Excellent place for an afternoon swim or a rinse after a hot day of climbing. I looked for photos, I just have one from our trip and It was after we packed up. See below. Happy Camping my friends!

Excellent, quiet and secluded family friendly spot.

This is my all time favorite campground. (When I’m not looking for a lot of amenities). This campground is actually a veteran owned boating rental/shuttle service with an attached campground. It’s very spacious, I’ve camped on holiday weekends and never had other campers within 100 ft of my site. I’ve also been on weekends where I was the only camper there. The campsites are fairly primitive, only including a fire ring and a nice picnic table. They do not have any water or electric hookups and no cell service, which is all a plus in my opinion. But they do have a trash bin and portable-potty’s scattered around and they sell firewood on site. Oh and the grass is always maintained. There is so much room and there are a variety of “types” of campsites. By that I mean there are wide open spaces, sites in the trees, sites with sandy floors, etc. The entire campground runs alongside the river bank, so you can put in your own kayak/canoe or rent one from them. I just love this place. It is super family friendly, they have an 11pm quiet time and strict alcohol policy. The owners and all staff are the friendliest people I’ve ever met. Two of the owners know me and my friends by name and strike up convo with us every time we’re there and we’ve only been 3-4 times a year for the past 3 years. This campground is only a two mile paddle to the infamous jump rock and swim hole. Also, you are just 10 minutes from slade, where you will find Miguel’s, (the best pizza you’ll ever eat), gas stations, and cell signal. You’re also only 20-30 minutes away from Muir Valley, an excellent rock climbing destination. And if you have made It this far, I don’t mind sharing with you that if you wade out into the water about 15ft upstream of the boat launch, the river is relatively flat with a sandy bottom that is about 5’ at normal water level. Excellent place for an afternoon swim or a rinse after a hot day of climbing. I looked for photos, I just have one from our trip and It was after we packed up. See below. Happy Camping my friends!

So-so, "roughing it" at different levels ... but be prepared for anything!

I lived in the Dewey Lake-JWSP area with family members, until 2002. Currently, I live about 10-15 minutes away from JWSP and visit the park at least once a month, depending on the weather. If you want to mix up your trip besides going camping or doing any recreational activities: Jenny Wiley Theater, mid June-early August, Outdoor Theater, (kinda like Summer Stock); Theme or special dinners at the Lodge, (mostly on weekends), year round; the community/ state park swimming pool is currently being "refurbished" and will be reopening, (hopefully) in Summer 2019. And, speaking of recreation, you can "hit the links" at the Stone Crest Golf Course, nearby.

But, as for other recreational activities: there's bike riding, hiking, boating: recreational, travel, kayaking and fishing types. If you want to do any horseback riding, you have to bring your own horse and gear, but contact the JWSP office first on where you can ride your horse. Better yet, you can take about a 30 minute drive from the Lodge to the German Bridge Campground area up Cow Creek, which is also in the Dewey Lake area, Contact the Dewey Lake US Army Corps of Engineers for more details, (in other words, Google it). Plus, there are picnic shelters in different areas of JWSP, some of them right next to Dewey Lake.

Now, as for camping, you have 3 type choices… #1. reserving a cabin near the Lodge, (and Dewey's, the local "watering hole"), kinda like "glamping", but it's rougher. (BTW, this area and the Lodge are the best places for getting a cell phone signal). #2. RV (Recreational Vehicle) Camping. There is a RV camping site not far from where I used to live, but from my personal experience, call the JWSP office at least 2 weeks in advance before the date you plan to use the site to see if there is going to be anything available on the dates you want, before making your reservation. First come, first served! #3. A. There are tent campsites next to Dewey Lake in various areas around the lake accessible by boat only, which are overseen by the Corps of Engineers, contact them or the JWSP office. Best place in my opinion: Campsite near the Dewey Dam/ Spillway Area. B. Other Outdoor Camping: Contact the Corps of Engineers or the Park Ranger's at JWSP. If you want to see some wildlife also, contact the local KY State Fish & Wildlife office that handles JWSP and Dewey Lake.

But there's some stuff I've learned over the years living and camping in this area, that I think you must know, some of this you might have run into on other camping trips at other parks…

  1. DO NOT DRINK THE WATER FROM THIS LAKE… AND DON'T SWIM IN IT EITHER!
  2. FISH AT YOUR OWN RISK,,, CATCH & RELEASE! (Personally, I'd go to a pay lake).
  3. FCC LICENCE 2-WAY EMERGENCY RADIO (I prefer the Motorola ones, (white & red, also has a NOAA Weather Radio and FM Radio), you can get a brand new one for between $40-$60. The FCC Licence is currently $70, the feds do a background check on you, if you get the licence, it lasts 10 years).
  4. BEAR MACE - A BIG CAN OF IT! Not only do you have the Black Bears to deal with, you have the Coyotes too!
  5. IF YOU ARE AT A LAKESIDE CAMPING SITE, HAVE A LIFE JACKET ON AT ALL TIMES! You might fall into the water by accident or you may have to jump into the lake at night in case of emergency!

And last, but not least…

6. DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE A MOTORBOAT! NO ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES ON THE BOAT! EVERY PERSON ON BOARD MUST BE WEARING A LIFE JACKET! The Fish & Wildlife officers do surprise checks on the recreational boats to see if the rules are being followed… if they aren't following the rules… you may have to pay a fine and/or do some time!

Nice Campground

Primitive camping is next to creek. Plenty of trees and shade for hammocks. Most spots have level areas for Tents. Bathhouses was recently redone and very clean. Cleanest bathhouse in any state or national park stayed ed at. Walking distance to old the old fort location and new Ft. Boonesborough.
Will go back again.

By Far the best camping!

primitive and paid campsites both available, depending on your comfort level and preference. I prefer primitive - you will need a pass when not camping in a camp ground which cost very little per night. The hiking trails are mind blowing with great views and river side. Must see arches and natural bridges. This park is a wonderland for rock climbers. The best campsites are by water. Beautiful camping all year round! Dogs are more than welcome :)

serene environment, so much beauty and nature to enjoy

There are so many different places to hike. Be careful of cliffs and your surroundings. Nothing but natural beauty. You can rock climb, camp, hike, kayak, and best of all amazing views.

Small campground with access to hiking trails and fishing.

Campground has lots of amenities. Restroom, showers. electric, and water. Playground for children, and a shelter with several picnic tables.

Friendly

Coin showers little to no shade climbers paradise "dirtbags" everywhere great pizza!!

Nice get away. Very peaceful. Clean.

It is very clean and friendly

lots to do

AC in very clean bath house was a big plus. we were close to the river in a reasonably secluded spot. there are lots of activities and trails in the area.

Home away from home

Red river gorge as a whole is one of my favorite places. I personally prefer to camp off-site but you need a pass. Luckily it's only $5. I highly recommend RRG to anyone who loves to hike and swim and explore. So many different trails and multiple types of landscapes. Please go check it out. I'll see you there.

Great Place

My family and I loved staying at the campground. It was very clean and quiet. The bath house was spotless! We will be back.

One of the best campground closest to Indiana

My husband and I go to Red River Gorge any time we are looking to get away for a couple nights!

Great family-friendly, primitive car camping

This campground is easy to access and good for individuals or groups; it's mostly covered with grass though there are areas that are more dirt, closer to the river. It's nestled between the Red River and Highway 715, so you are pretty close to the road and will hear some road noise, but it's a pretty quiet 2-lane highway. There are picnic tables and fire-rings at each campsite, and it is easy to pitch a few tents in close proximity if you are there with a group. The toilets are port-a-potties scattered throughout the campground. You are asked to sign a waiver and agree to the quiet hours (11-6). The campground is gated and the gate is closed and locked at 10 pm (but the campground manager sleeps on-site). The firewood we purchased here was very wet though, and never burned well. This is typical of much of the firewood purchased at the RRG though, unless you buy kiln-dried from the store. Canoe and kayak rentals happen at the site as well. This was perfect for camping with my 10-month old, without needing to hike in from the car. A good balance between a crowded state campground and backcountry camping.

Pricey but interesting

I was very interested in this area for the living history museum but as a tent camper I had more than a little sticker shock at the $36 price point not to mention the booking fee on Reserve America. That made this one of the most expensive campgrounds I have stayed at including numerous stops in California. 😒

The sites were well shaded and included the typical set up of fire rings and picnic tables but I did feel a little closer to my neighbor than I would have liked. I can only imagine the feeling to and RV camper would be even more suffocating.

The campground was noisy and busy as it was a weekend, and while some of that can be expected for the higher price point I would have liked things to have been a bit more accommodating to those times, maybe they should offer a few less sites so there can be a bit more space so if it is busy you don’t feel like you are suffocated by noise.

With that being said, not all was bad here. The things to do outside of th campground itself were worth some of the inadequacies the camp provided in way of space. The living history museum was one of the best I have seen in the Kentucky or Tennessee area and other amenities such as water access and proximity to hiking was great.

If I did return it would be during the week and potentially not during summer to avoid the crowd.

Awesome backcountry camping!!!!

W always go to Indian Creek in the RRG. My family loves it. Getting away from the busy life and into backcountry is like stepping into God's country. Don't have to worry about nothing and every day is a new adventure.