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This was a last minute reservation and only available due to a cancellation. The campground was full for the weekend. The campground is pretty big with different types of sites. Some are smaller, close to neighbors while other have seclusion with trees. From past experience, if it rains, some of the sites do flood. We had great weather this weekend. The site we reserved had a hill right next to the passenger side/door side of your camper. If you had a big camper, it might be tight to open your slides and an awning. You most likely would not sit right outside your camper door. In fact, the fire ring is behind the site and up a small hill. We set up our ez-up in the back and out of the way, it worked for us. There was also a path that led you into the playground. Speaking of playgrounds, you will hear a lot of kids if the weather is nice. We were right across from the camp host (very nice lady) and very short walk to the bathhouse. The bathhouse had 4 flushable toilets and I think 3 showers. The showers did not have benches in the stall, only on the outside directly across. With a full campground, the bathrooms were kept very clean with the amount of people using it. We walked around and noticed a lot of bathhouses and another playground. We took a hike that led us to the lodge - it was an in and out and just under 5 miles. On our way back we stopped at the camp store which was well stocked with items you may need or not. There is a putt putt course, frisbee disc course, horse trails, dog park, nature center, golf course and more trails nearby. There are plenty of things to do if you like to keep busy or are trying to keep kids entertained. (The bees and stinkbugs were out and about while we were there.)
We arrived late at night wishing we had better cell reception and a paper map of the National Forest. We were grateful to have the Dyrt's info downloaded on my chromebook. Even still, Wayne National Forest is a maze of public and private land. The Ironton Campground has been closed during 2020 as part of a water main line break. We initially tried the Hanging Rock OHV trailhead, but locals used that area for partying when we were there and it wasn't ideal to camp at the trailhead with about a dozen cars speeding along the gravel roads around midnight. We found the Sand Hill Trail head and pitched camp not too far from where we parked. The NF website says fires are allowed if you make a stone ring. We just skipped it. It is a very pretty area along Vesuvius Lake with trees and bluffs. We saw a ranger in the morning and he suggested next time we just camp at the horsecamp. The pins on the Dyrt's map were inaccurately located when we were using it with multiple entries. Next time I will purchase a paper map before I go because Wayne National Forest has alot of private lands interspersed and it is not all that clear without an official map. Hopefully the Dyrt will get better at hyper locating those lines.
My friend and I recently stayed at the north ridge campsite, which is the tents only site at Tar Hollow State Park. I had both positive and negative experiences. Let's start with the positives. It's a very secluded campsite so it really feels like you're one with nature. The pit latrines are convenient for those emergency situations but they're not the cleanest but it is not a far drive to the flush toilets at the RV campsite area near the camp store. Site 106 is a great site if you choose to stay here. It is very flat, one of the most flat sites (I think 105 is more flat) and so my night's sleep was great.
Now for the negatives, which sadly outweigh the positives for my stay.
You are right next to your camping neighbors. I have terrible luck and ended up staying next to a very inconsiderate and loud group that included their many dogs. Normally this wouldn't bother me but I could hear all of their conversations because we were so close to them. You can hear snoring and other "nighttime" noises so just be aware others can and will hear you. I wasn't able to find the water spigot right away because someone set up their tent right next to it but then was able to find it once they moved their tent. This is more of a negative of the State Park but the hiking paths are not clearly marked and I am embarrassed to admit I did get lost in the woods. The map they have is in black in white but the park uses a color system. This could be solved by taking a picture of the colorful map right by the fire tower.
Overall, I don't think I would choose to return to this site for camping because you're just way to close to others around you.
Deer Creek State Park Campground is aptly named. There are deer all over and you can see them from many campsites…though we haven’t seen any deer tick yet. There are many heavily shaded sites and another side is fairly open. Many sites off the main road have hills you need to go down to set up a tent. Comfort Stations (read flush toilets) are usually close by and several Shower Houses are scattered throughout the grounds. Shower houses are in great shape and have plenty of hot water but only 3 showers per house and are fairly small. Campsites are mixed in sizes. Some are great for a small group (3-4) to camp together and have a common area while others are pretty spacious. We are in 109 and have plenty of privacy and overlook a small fishing pond. Nothing close by so pick up any gas, groceries or snacks you want before you get here. Nice place and we’ll definitely come back.
Several campsites are on a slope so this calls for being creative with placement of tent.
Firewood available for purchase on site. Lake Hope lodge provides great warm and dry spot for delicious food.
Several activities available, fishing available anywhere on the lake, kayak rental for $10 and good size lake.
Very clean pit toliets and running water available dispersed throughout the park. Several hiking trails, zaleski is nearby, hocking hills is 30 minutes away. Moonville tunnel and iron furnace in the area.
We stayed at site 11. It is not at all private but very level. The “outhouse” near these sites was simply a latrine and covered in mosquitos. However, the bathhouse a short walk away is really clean lovely. If I returned, I’d camp at sites 81-93 (rustic) because they are shaded, near the bathhouse, and lead to a trailhead. Don’t forget: You are here to see tinge majesty of the caves! And this campground is the closest you can get!
Visited Zaleski in the spring and encountered some muddy hills to climb up and down. Camp sites were further than expected as you would see a sign indicating camp areas. It took some adjusting, several forms of maps and learning curve of what they indicated, where and how they correlated to the trail. Not a simple just backpack and you'll get there, but really looking at your map and compass or if you're lucky all trails app if you have phone signal. Plenty of trees, flowers and nature to enjoy. If recent rainfall in the area be mindful of the mud. Beautiful trail And well worth the challenge here in Ohio.