Located along the Elk River in Southwest Missouri, River Ranch offers different selections of camping areas. For those searching for a more private space, primitive tent camping is available. Electric tent camping is also available for those requiring electricity. River Ranch camping is also RV camping friendly as well.
Website said site we reserved was shady and grassy. Shade was ok but barely tufts of grass. Mostly sharp rocks/gravel/dirt which ended up tearing a hole in the bottom of our tarp footprint and tent. Worker there said those sites hadn’t been grassy for years and their website lied. :(
We stayed on the island (NOT the party side) which was very far from bathrooms. Ended up driving to them when we really had to go. Bathrooms themselves would be not bad if it wasn’t for drunken idiots leaving them a mess every night. We had one good neighbor. The others were busy blasting their music for all to hear and smoking weed for all to smell.
Not really a swimming beach area. Rocks are rather large and definitely not pea gravel or easy to walk on without twisting an ankle.
Store was nice. Overpriced but that’s to be expected. Seemed to be lots of security but guessing it’s cause of the partiers. Often the police/sheriff would patrol which was weird to see multiple times a day.
Not the best place to camp if rain/storms possible.
Definitely won’t be coming again or recommend for those seeking nature or with children.
Loud very drunk people are everywhere in the summer if that is your think you will love it. If not maybe try a weekday.
This is the best place to stay when floating the Elk River. Lots to choose from, cabins, tents, campers, etc. Have a late night loop (for the partiers), sand volleyball courts, shuttle to a nearby open air dance club, huge store and restaurant with good pizza and breakfast buffet. The cabins are nice as well. This is our go to spot for the Elk River year after year. Canoes, rafts, kayaks, etc. They have a 5 and 8 mile float option, depending on river conditions.
If you’re looking for a quiet day on the river go during the week, still tons of fun, but way less people. Every trip was a great time, and super easy to figure it all out!