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Man-made reservoir - Falls Lake is located in the upper portion of the Neuse River Basin. Nice shaded trails. Very nice park.
The campground at Staunton River State Park has lots of shade, water and electrical hookups, level sites, are not on top of each other, and… gravel sites. I understand the reason for gravel sites, but it is NOT good for tent campers, especially for campers that do not have freestanding tents. The first two attempts at driving tent stakes in resulted in bent stakes. Even though I said the sites are not on top of each other, they are still close enough that you do not get much privacy. The noise from other campers was fairly loud. Two units(e.g., camper+ tent) are allowed, but there is little room for anything, especially since campers are supposed to keep everything within the boundaries of the“timbers.” We got one of the largest sites, and it still was crowded. There was a fire ring with a grate, a picnic table, and two lantern poles, but again, everything was tight. Fitting two vehicles within the limits was nearly impossible. I know we weren’t supposed to set anything up outside the boundaries(please forgive us), but we set up our dining canopy and hammocks outside of the timbers. Despite the campsite limits, I still think this campground and the state park were great. There were many miles of trails for biking, hiking, and horseback riding. We rode our bikes along a couple of the trails, but we had to steer around horse poop(not always successfully). The trail itself was scenic at times when we rode by the river, and it was not too difficult. There are enough“bumps” for bikers to get their heartbeats jumping, but the trails are easy and moderate. Kayaking and fishing seemed to be two of the more popular activities. There is a boat ramp, and beside the boat ramp, there were several people fishing. Many kayakers came and went as we put our kayaks into the water. The one thing kayakers have to be aware of is the presence of speed boats. We got hit by passing boaters several times. Other activities at this campground/state park are disc golf, playing on the playground, tennis, and swimming. Unfortunately, the swimming area is closed for 2020 because of the pandemic. However, several people were swimming at the boat landing. When it is open, the swimming pool area is exceptional for a state park. There is a water slide and a really nice swimming complex. Staunton River State Park is also designated as an“International Dark Sky Park.” Unfortunately, we did not take advantage of that. After biking and kayaking all day and camp cooking during the evening, we were exhausted. There is no shortage of things to do, and I wish I could have stayed at least a couple more days. Overall, the park is a fairly nice place, but if you take a tent, make sure it is a freestanding tent.
Love this park. I stayed in cabin #4 twice in the last year and had a great time! The park offers several activities: hiking, biking, fishing, wildlife viewing, boating (if you bring your own boat), stargazing (the park has been recognized as International Dark sky and there are two telescopes that can be checked out for free at the visitor’s center). The staff is very polite and the gift shop is great! While staying there I saw a skunk, a groundhog, several deer and a great variety of birds. We enjoyed gorgeous sunsets from a little beach area near the cabins. The cabins are rustic (they date back to 1936) but very cozy and clean.
Falls Lake State Recreation Area is huge, with seven access areas (4 of which offer camping). We stayed at Holly Point, which offers both tent and RV camping on large, wooded lots. Our campsite, 57, backed up to a finger of Falls Lake for fishing. It was just a short walk to a clean swimming beach. Best of all, it was a great place for the kids to explore!
Sites had their own trash cans. A nice grocery store, some gas stations, and some restaurants were just a short drive out of the park. We'd love to return.
We had a great weekend camping here with our cub scouts in the Shinleaf group camping area. We had about 40 people and had plenty of room to spread out over three camping sites, Osprey Nest, Blue Heron and Bootleg point. The bathrooms were within easy walking distance. Lots of shade to put tents up under. Plenty of picnic tables and fire rings. The Park Rangers came by a few times and we bought some firewood from them. They were very friendly and helpful.
The area is cool to explore, there are several points on the lake you can easily hike to. There are boaters who use the lake mostly during day, even a few at 6:30am!
We even found a cool Northern watersnake eating a fish on the shoreline.