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Redneck lite I heard someone call it. It's fun and relaxing. Safe and fun for kids. Great little store and arcade. There's a pool. Nice big pool. Sometimes live music. Very laid back and happy. Daily activities including hay rides and a bunch of decorated wagons being towed by 4 wheeler for the kids. Mini golf needs work. But the have plans to fix it. We had a blast.
After spending several very quiet nights in sparsely occupied campgrounds, we arrived at Watkins Glen to a full campground. The Six Nation Campground is comprised of six loops, each named after a tribe, with a total of over 300 sites. It looked like some of the sites were being rehabbed. The Mohawk Loop is the only one with electric hookups. There are also cabins, but I did not see them. Rates vary depending on how many nights you spend, whether you have an electric or non-electric site, and if you are a NY resident or not. Although the sites are spaced a decent amount apart, most do not have trees or any other barrier to separate them. However, despite our loop being completely full, we did not feel too close to our neighbors. The bathroom/shower facility was reasonably clean. There are two shower stalls and four toilets, and I feared it might be overwhelmed when the loop was full, but I never had to wait.
There is a large day-use area with some nice playground equipment and there are additional playground areas (not as nice) in the loops. There is also a swimming pool but since we were there in October, it had already closed for the season (despite temperatures hovering near 90 degrees)! Normally, there is a trail that leads from the campground to the South Rim Trail, from which you can access the Gorge and other trails, however, due to recent heavy rains, this trail was closed when we were there. There are three access points to the trails: south entrance, upper entrance, or main entrance. From any of these, you can do a loop or just part of the trails. The most popular Gorge trail can get very crowded. We arrived at 10 am on a Tuesday in October and by the time we left at noon, the trail was much more crowded. I can only imagine how crowded it could get on the weekends (judging by the size of the parking lot).
We travel a lot around the country and as such, trash and recycling policies can vary greatly. There was a sign on all the dumpsters listing materials accepted for recycling so we assumed we should use one dumpster for all garbage and recycling (this is how it was in Acadia NP). It wasn’t until later that we saw on a bulletin board that there is a recycling bin near the camp office. This could easily be confusing and could easily be remedied with additional information on the sign indicating where to bring recyclables!
We loved our two-night stay at this park. It is a very compact park and once you are settled, everything is within walking distance. 76 sites plus 12 cabins in two loops– an “old” one and a “new” one. The old loop has 35 sites (sites 1-12 have electric hookups but, in my opinion, they are not nearly as nice as other sites with no hookups. These 12 sites are very close together (1-6 are more like parallel parking spots) with no privacy between them. Sites 36-72 are in the new loop and can vary significantly. I was told there are future plans for electric hookups in the new loop. If you are camping in the summer, you will want Sites 36, 38, 40, 42, 48, 50, or 76 as these are very shaded and private. The sites on the outside of the grassy area(52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62, 64, 66, 68, 70, 72) were in full sun, which was very nice in September but could be brutal during hot summer months. Some have trees for separation, but these sites are spaced a generous distance apart. The sites on the inside of the loop seem less desirable to me and no one occupied them during our stay.
Only the bathhouse in the new loop (which was very clean) had showers, which were very nice (clean with a good hard spray and hot water).
The office was staffed until 6:30 pm and since we pre-registered, the process was very smooth. There is one garbage/recycling area between the two loops and the bonus for us was propane canister recycling. There are a large day-use area and a shelter available to rent, along with two playgrounds (one designated for ages 2-5 and the other for ages 5-12). During the summer months, there is a swimming hole fed by Lower Falls; swimming is only allowed when lifeguards are present.
What we loved most about our stay here was the hike on the Gorge and Rim Trails. You can make a loop by hiking both. It was a good workout, but the views were incredible on the Gorge Trail. With your camping fee, you can also visit nearby Buttermilk Falls State Park and there is a similar, but shorter, Rim/Gorge Trail which was also worth visiting.
Very nice thousand trail campgrounds. Very large I believe it's 1300 + sites. We went late summer show it was becoming offseason. Most amenities close down. Pool, swimming at Lake Ontario beach, etc.. well kept campground. Staff was extremely friendly and helpful. One staff member Mike told us about Salmon River Falls. We went and it is a "must see" while there. Basically 15 minutes from the campground. That is by RV as we had no toad this time. Mexico Point is another close attraction to see as well. Was first time for my wife that close to any of the finger lakes. She loves it!
Very large campground with a lot of spots! The park is nice and has a beautiful gorge trail close to the campground. Right outside the park is the town of Watkins glen, which has cute stores and restaurants! The Watkins glen international is close by and we got to see some racing , which was really neat! Would recommend this spot.
The hiking in the part is incredible! The gorge trail is an absolute must do! Some spots of the campground are secluded, but I can see how some areas can get crowded. We went on a slow day and it was very empty. Showers and full bathrooms available!