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Very nice campground. Showers and bathrooms are nice. A stream that runs through the campground is nice for the kids to play in when it’s too hot for them on the play ground. They usually have a lot of activities for the weekends planned.
Great state park to camp in to get away but still be near Columbus and some great things to do in central Ohio. We've camped here a couple of times and the campsite are always clean and the showers are spotless. Yes in the summer it can fill up pretty quick but during the week there are plenty of sites open. As have been mentioned boating opportunities, a free archery range, and plenty of trails to hike. The staff has always been great and helpful to answer questions. We'll be back, this is one of our go to parks.
You're learning to backpack the Buckeye Trail, and you want to know where and how you can camp along the trail. This primitive site is located a short hop (.17 mile) off the trail adjacent to Hipp's Lock, part of the old Miami-Erie Canal towpath. There's space enough for perhaps two tents, with metal fire ring, and plenty of deadfall for that small survival TV fire. The pond is filled with wildlife, and the tree frogs and bull frogs will lull you to sleep. Another Boy Scout project that benefits the Buckeye Trail. You'll need to Leave-No-Trace, as it's a primitive site, but it's a welcome respite from the road walking of this section.
You're learning to backpack the Buckeye Trail, and you want to take the first steps towards that without worrying about the physical load you're going to have to carry. You can drop the tent on this portion! This Adirondack shelter, located between Points 6 and 7 on the St. Mary's Section of the Buckeye Trail, is perfect for you. Built as an Eagle Scout project by Parker and Keaton Cole of Troop 95 (in Sidney), it is large enough for six or to sleep comfortably off the ground. You cannot miss it as you go along the trail. There is a fireplace (stone, make sure you check that the chimney is not blocked) large enough to cook your hotdogs and keep you happy as you sit in the shelter. There is deadfall from the trees around you that will serve as kindling and fuel for the fire. If you start in Lockington or Fort Loramie, this shelter is approximately 10 miles in and the right place to break a two-day backpacking trip.
Only 30 minutes down the river from Independence Dam State Park, this park was markedly different. Because there was a two-night minimum reservation on weekends and we were just passing through, we decided to try and roll the dice and see if we could slide into a spot for just a night without a reservation. Alas, the only spots still available were walk-in tent sites which would not work for us. This park was laid out more like an RV park with the sites very close together and no privacy between them (Site 16 looked to be the best one for privacy). Except for the walk-in tent sites, electric and/or electric/water hookups were available. As we pulled in, the host immediately greeted us and was very friendly (she genuinely wanted to find us a spot). There is a marina/store close-by and the quaint town of Grand Rapids (which you could walk to if you wanted) had several shops and restaurants. We would have stayed here for the night if a site had been available, so make sure you make reservations if you are coming on a weekend (and can stay for two nights).
When researching our trip, I came upon this state park right on the Maumee River and was very surprised to find it had not been previously reviewed. The website indicated the sites were tent only but when I called, I was told we could park and sleep in our campervan. When I tried to make reservations, there was a two-night minimum on the weekends and we were just passing through so I decided to see if we might be able to snag one night if there were sites available.
There is a two-mile road to the campsites once you enter the park and along the way, we passed many pull-out day-use picnic areas on nicely manicured grounds. Once we reached the campsites, there seemed to be less attention paid to the area. Turns out that there were only a very few sites that had paved pads that would accommodate our van; the rest were clearly for tents only (but there was no way to tell this from the website). Even though I had seen that about half of the sites were reserved, there was no one there at 4:30 on a Friday. There did not seem to be any staff or rangers on-site and there is self-registration. The rates seemed kind of steep ($19 on weekdays; $20 weekends and $22 on holiday weekends) for sites with no hookups and only porta-potties. We saw some people fishing near the dam and perhaps the campground would be suitable for these folks and/or people boating/kayaking in who portage down the river (there is a marina) but it just did not feel like a place we wanted to camp.