RV Sites
Tent Sites
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
Drinking Water
About Clarence Fahnestock State Park

This scenic campground, formed along the park's natural rock ridges, provides alcoves of privacy and tranquility for campers. Each of the 80 campsites has a picnic table and fire ring. Additionally there is an area for RV camping. Although there are no hookups available or dump station, restroom and shower facilities are centrally located to all RV and tent sites. Individuals, as well as larger camping groups, are welcome. The campground's nature center houses environmental displays and a variety of touch boxes. On weekends, park staff organizes hikes and craft activities. Movies are shown on Saturday evenings for the enjoyment of all campers.

Drive In
Walk In
ADA Accessible
Alcohol Allowed
Drinking Water
Fires Allowed
Firewood Available
Pets Allowed
Phone Service
Picnic Table
Trash Available
Water Hookups
Clarence Fahnestock State Park is located in New York
41.4664 N
-73.8247 W
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12 Reviews of Clarence Fahnestock State Park
Pretty decent

Great park with large enough campsites. Bathrooms were clean, showers were ok, could use a little bleach. We were at site 52 and had to drive to the bath house because it was so far, but we didn’t mind. Mosquitos were terrible. Water taps scattered around campground. We were drinking the water right out the tap but by our 4th day there were new signs to boil the water before drinking. We figured since we had been drinking it so long and felt fine we were ok so we didn’t boil our last day.

Solid Campground

Spent the weekend camping with friends and we really enjoyed our time at Clarence Fahnestock. We were lucky our site was secluded from everyone else and we were surrounded by lots of trees. They also have community sites if that’s your thing. The bathrooms were fairly clean but only 2 stalls so sometimes got a bit crowded. The beach across the way was great and had its own bathrooms and a small concession stand. Overall very pleased and would definitely go back.

Nice rustic campground

Beautiful State Park, Nice clean Beach and Lake, Bathroom and showers were clean.

We had a family camping trip with lots of kids of all ages, the walk in sites are not too far off the road so it was easily manageable.

Pleasant campground, litter was a drawback

Came in on MetroNorth from NYC then took a pre-arranged taxi ($25 flat rate) to the campground. Check-in was fast at the registration desk, and they sold bundles of wood for$6. The campsite (#040) was private, but was located next to the Nature Center and a water spigot, so it was not a super quiet place. The site was littered with small pieces of trash and there was a folding chair someone left open beside the firepit when we arrived… not ideal. 

However, the site itself was solid- it is surrounded by forest, and is at the top of a small ridge above Pelton Pond, so there was a pretty consistent breeze (few bugs!) and the soft sounds of bullfrogs at night. A tree with a couple medium-size dead limbs was above the ideal place to pitch the tent. The site comes with a picnic table (it was in OK shape) and a fire ring with removable grate, as well as a standing-level charcoal BBQ grill. This site and several others on the opposite (west) side of Pelton Pond had easy access to the 1.5 mile Pelton Pond hike loop. There was plenty of dry kindling around the site, which was a huge help because the wood bought from the Park hissed and didn't really get burning (damp wood? fresh cut?). 

The park rangers told us the plumbing had been re-done in the past year, so the water fountains and water spigots were in great shape and provided cold, clear water. The bathrooms were clean and well-kept (saw toilet bowl cleaner in the morning), no stalls ran out of toilet paper, and there was soap most of the time at the sinks. We did not use the showers, so can't speak to those. There are even dish washing sinks available with hot running water. 

We walked 20 min from our site to the beach across the 2-lane highway. The lake is clear and sandy (some rocks in sand on shore, but standard for imported sand), and many families seemed to have traveled up for a day trip. There are facilities and a small grill (burgers, popsicles, etc.) at the beach. 

Overall, the campsite was pleasant and it was peaceful during quiet hours (10pm-7am) on both Friday and Saturday nights. Removing one star for the lack of care at the site itself (litter, trash around when we arrived) and the poor firewood quality. I would recommend this campground to those looking for a quick trip out of the city, to people new to camping, or to use as a base to explore the Hudson River Valley if you have a personal vehicle.

Close to the city

This is one of my favorite places to go camping with friends. It is so close to the city and has easy access to all the wonderful things in the area. It is also incredibly beautiful in the fall and can be combined with delicious apple picking. Try and go ahead and reserve in advance a private site, otherwise the group sites are great for meeting new people.

spread out sites, decent facilities, quiet

Went here as a large group and they accommodated us with an individual in a wheelchair and changed out sites without any issues. We were right next to the entrance for hiking trails which was convenient. The facilities are a bit of a walk, but that means it is spread out and there's plenty of room to relax and have fun. The staff could have been a bit more friendly, but maybe they had an off day. We spent the weekend here and would definitely return.

Busy Place on Weekends - Quiet On Weekdays

Fahnestock State Park, Carmel, NY

Busy Campground on Weekends!

This park has a nice open beach on Canopus Lake with a concession area and bathhouse, which we found to be quite clean! They even have boat rentals - or you can bring your own boat to launch! If you are into fishing, there is another lake and two ponds that our neighbor campers said were great for catching panfish - one fisherman said he had caught several bass weighing over 3 pounds!!

Weekends - this park is FULL! Make sure to reserve at least two weeks out. Weekdays? You should be in luck! We stayed in site number 1, and I found it to be just wooded enough. Almost all of the sites offered privacy…. Even when the campground was full. I do feel the campground bathhouse really needed more attention… while it had clearly been painted this past year, it was very “buggy” - and did not appear to have been thoroughly cleaned since spring… (yuck!).

PRODUCT REVIEW: As a ranger for Dyrt.com, sometimes I am offered the opportunity to test and review various products. At Fahnestock State Park in New York state, I reviewed my Gregory Maven 55L Women’s backpack (see accompanying video).

Weighing in at 3 pounds 6 ounces, the Gregory Maven was a nice mid-weight pack for me to take on my yearly 2 1/2 week Appalachian Trail hike.

Normally, I like to save the best for last when I do a review; however, this time I just can’t wait to spread the news about my favorite features! The Maven has a Matrix Ventilation System, which provides exceptional ventilation on the pack’s back panel. This kept my back from being its usual sweaty mess! The second feature that blew me away was how cool my water stayed in this backpack! With other packs, the water gets warmed up from heat radiating off the hiker’s back. This didn’t happen with my Gregory pack! Every pull off my water - from the beginning of the day until hours later - provided me with a refreshingly cool drink. I actually questioned other hikers with Gregory packs to see if I was the only one experiencing this - The other hikers, who had different Gregory models, confirmed that their backs and water were staying cooler too! Added bonus: I was able to pull out the hydration sleeve and use it as a daypack a few times!

The Maven’s pockets helped me keep my pack much more organized than in the past. It has a lower sleeping bag compartment, top pocket with separate zipper areas (one has a place to attach a car key!), side pockets, hip pockets, and even pockets on the shoulder harnesses! I can’t forget the front pocket, which held the rain fly!

The pack fit was great, but do be careful to check your sizing if you are looking at both the 45L and 55L. While I am a XS/S with the 55L, I would have been a S/M with the 45L.

I used this pack for 2 1/2 weeks backpacking over 200 miles on the Appalachian Trail through the states of New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. The Maven did an outstanding job keeping my possessions organized and dry as well as keeping me comfortable and happy on the trail! This will definitely be my pack of choice for future hikes!

Our Go-to spot in the Northeast

When you are camping with a large group of friends and don't all have access to a car, this is the perfect spot. MetroNorth takes you right into Cold Spring, a charming, quaint town with antique shops and beautiful views of the Hudson. From there, it is a short drive to the campgrounds at Fahnestock. Some of the sites are side by side other campers, which is an interesting way to meet new people and expand your circles. Other sites are more isolated and provide a greater amount of privacy. All of the sites offer adequate amenities (fire pit, room for parking) and there are bathrooms and water spouts relatively close by. During the summer months, the spots fill up quickly so be sure to book early. We make a habit of going during the end-of-summer/fall when you can watch the leaves change along the hiking trails, go apple and pumpkin picking near the campsites, and eat some scrumptious apple cinnamon doughnuts and drink pumpkin hot chocolate. We highly recommend this site!

Fishing and Birding and close to everything

This park is literally in the heart of the action. You are within an hour to West Point Academy, vanderbilt mansion and franklin D roosevelt national historic sites in hyde park, and downtown manhattan. The walkway over the hudson is a must do and is right up the road a half an hour. Tons of fishing in the surrounding lakes and ponds. You feel like you are a world away, but within an hour to so much!! Great home base!

Ranger Review: Goal Zero Lighthouse 250 at Clarence Fahnestock Campground

Campground Review: Nice Catskills site, feels a million miles from NYC. Densely wooded forests, sandy beach, hiking trails, rolling hills, lovely geology, streams, lakes, boat rentals. Tons to do all year, but visit in the winter for tons of XC skiing. Deer right by my tent! There are a lot of ranger-led activities but I didn’t get to do any of them. If you can’t make it all the way to the Adirondacks this is a nice substitute and a good place to take people camping for the first time (I went here a few times with exchange students). Campsites are pretty spread out, make sure to drive the whole road before picking yours (though all seem nice). Some are very private. Kind of buggy but that’s just how this area is. I've been to this site at least 3 times in the past 5(?) years, it's a nice solid choice for this area. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Gear Review: As a The Dyrt Ranger I receive products to test and review. I won the Goal Zero Lighthouse 250 in a campground review contest in June 2016. This was my first rechargeable lantern ever and my first ever usb power hub. Overall I like the lantern and will use it for camping (too heavy for backpacking IMO), in the backyard, and in my emergency kit. The light itself is super bright or pretty dim (6 brightness options) and the little feet are nice for throwing more light around your area. The battery cell has a decent amount of power, but I only used it to top off my iphone 5 a few times over our 3-day weekend with it (probably charged it about 50% total). We used the crank a little---it’s a neat feature and good peace of mind. Overall the crank and hazard flashers make this a versatile light. Note: this lantern does not include a solar panel but can be charged by USB at home/car or by a sold-separately solar panel.