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Racine, OHIO
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Fave Midwest State Park

I get asked "where should we go camping or hiking in the Midwest?" Hocking Hills State Park is always my go-to answer. 

It has a ton of different terrains, it's easily accessible from Columbus, OH, and has great hiking opportunities. 

This particular campground is amazing because it's located nicely to many hiking trails but far away that you aren't overly crowded so you still get the feeling that you're in nature.

I've been here a ton growing up in the horse campground area, but most recently was there for tent camping. We were surrounded mostly by RVs, but we fit in quite nicely into our site. 

The sites were nicely spaced out and the hiking trails were all nearby.

Great place!!!!

Clean, located right on Old Mans Caves.  Friendly staff.

Ranger Review: Banner & Oak Firebiner at Zaleski South Loop

Campground Review: With a close friend coming to visit from Spain, I wanted to show her a cool backpacking location in Southeastern Ohio. Zaleski State Forest seemed like a good choice for a new backpacker. There are multiple loops to trek, averaging about 10 miles per loop. Overall the trails are well maintained (minus a few dense areas). There was almost an excessive amount of blazes. Campsites are plentiful along the trails. We stayed at Campsite C. Each site has access to communal well-water and a restroom. Each site usually has a small fire ring and logs to sit on. Overall, the campsites were pretty decent and secluded, but nothing special view wise aside from the typical Ohio forest. I would say pretty overall, but nothing quite outstanding.

Product Review: The Banner & Oak Firebiner is a neat little tool that has some really fun features! Most notable being the fire starter. The Firebiner uses a small spark wheel and replaceable ferro rod to create sparks. The sparks are pretty large for the little tool. I now use my Firebiner to start my MSR stove quickly and with zero plastic waste! I haven’t used it to try to start a straight up fire, but friends have successfully before. Most importantly, the spark wheel is just darn right fun to play with. The device has other little uses like a bottle opener, utility blade, and screwdriver. I absolutely love this device! Only complaint would be that I wish it came in different colors, but who really cares.

Here is a link to check out the Firebiner yourself: https://bannerandoak.com/products/banner-and-oak-firebiner?variant=9696793034788&currency=USD&gclid=CjwKCAjwnMTqBRAzEiwAEF3ndu9CmerLos5Y1yvjGHJ2L4FG732wg9bMpyPAJRa3m8dxlxffZ6Nt-RoC6LQQAvD_BwE

Beautiful, and peaceful!

So beautiful! Perfect right on the river… decent shower houses… peaceful little campground.

Nice campground

Clean facilities, quiet campground.

Zaleski backpack trail

The trail is diverse and great for beginners and experienced hikers. The campsites have privies, spigots for water, and a lot of different sites for different sized groups. Its a popular trail for a reason!

Will return

Great campground with super easy access to the trail and lake. The sites are spread apart enough so you aren’t right beside someone - and shaded. Well prepared sites with a clearing, fire ring, and a picnic table. Nice host and rangers too! Bathrooms were meh: the walls need cleaned or painted, no where to put your things, and there was no hand soap - no biggie though.

Beautiful area, but a lacking camp ground

The trails and sites are great in this area. Gorgeous waterfalls and most trails have short hikes to the main site to see, great for those kids who hike 5 steps and then complain. The downside of our trip was the camping. The showers and bathrooms looked like they were nice at one time, but have had some poor maintenance over the years. I couldn’t tell if they ever cleaned the facility the whole week we were there. The floor was always muddy, smelled of urine, there are no hooks for toiletry bags to be hung from, the mens had only 2/3 sinks working and 1/2 soap dispensers operating properly. The shower I used had a large section of the tiles on the ground missing along with screens in the windows not being there. It did not seem to have a ventilation/exhaust system and made the bathroom even more un bearable. The campsites are tiny and on top of each other. There was also no palatable water available around the campsites. You had to travel down the hill about a mile and a half to the main building to get some. Maybe it was the season but there were a ton of flies everywhere around the camping sites, the trails seemed to not have this issue. The plus was that we never saw a mosquito and that there is a decent pool available at no cost to the campers. Overall it was ok, but I would likely not stay there again.

Beautiful area and campground

We loved the hocking hills area and the campground was nice and quiet! We camped off on a side loop which was awesome. Only downfalls to this campground was our site off the pad for camper was very muddy and when it rained all the mud washed over our rug and stuff. The other downfall is that the bathrooms are very dirty. We would camp in the full hook up area if we go again

Also the last day when we dumped I washed my hands in bathrooms by the pool and they were so much nicer! If you need to shower I would drive up there!

The pool was refreshing after long days of hiking but the 15 min mandatory rest for adults and kids on the hour was a little different for us as we have never been at a pool that did that!

The trails and areas around are incredible!! Pictures do no justice! We will go back again one day!

Neglected, but could be a gem

Very hard to contact them. It was sold in dec 2018, and the phone number has changed and not up to date on line. The sites are mostly grass a few concrete pads along the River.

30 amp service. The care taker was friendly. We did not use the restrooms, as he didn’t have the hot water on, and no offer was made to turn it on. We backed onto the Ohio River and could watch the barges. There is a coal fired generator on the opposite side of the river. This one is all location. 35.00 a night was overpriced for amenities.

Great sites

The campground had many good tent and trailer sites. We had a beautiful spacious site for one large 5th wheel and 2 tents. The campground and bathrooms were well maintained. Lots of good short hiking trails both from the campground and within driving distance. There is also things to do in the areas like zip lining and water sports. Beautiful waterfalls and views!

Dirty pit toilets. Dirty sinks. Beautiful lake.

This state park has a beautiful lake and a nice beach. There are boat rentals and a frisbee golf course. Overall, this part of the park is beautiful. 

The campgrounds, however, leave a lot to be desired. The people were really nice, but the facilities were terrible. The pit toilets were filthy- covered in flies, spiderwebs and dirt. They look like they have not been hosed out since the 70's. The showers and sinks are in an old, old building- it could be fine if it were cleaned daily, but it was filthy too. I was there 3 days and the showers and sinks were never cleaned. They were pretty gross from the start, but then by Saturday night one shower housed a pile of feces. No kidding. Poop in the shower. 

We stayed in the camper cabin, which is just a very basic shed with a bed, bunk beds, air conditioning and heat. We stayed there because it was July and I wanted A/C and electricity. The cabin smelled like mold. 

I'd go back to this lake but will not stay in the campgrounds again.

A great campground near some out of this world trails

Many electric only spots, but did have about 30-40 full hook-ups. Camping spaces were about 30-40 feet wide. You get a huge spot.

The trail horribly muddy

The campsites looked OK. Dry. No water available to filter.  Cautioned against using the water. But the trail was a cesspool of mud in too many places esp on the stetch between the trailhead and the loop.  I turned around. The trail needs to be planked, elevated or rerouted. This is on July 1. The seasonal creek beds all dry, but the muddy trail is awful especially in comparison to the hype that I read

Burr Oak Group Campground (Old Boy Scout campground)

We just had our 10th Annual EGGS Hike with the Buckeye Trail Association this past weekend at the Burr Oak Group Campground. We hosted over 60 hikers who registered for 20 mile, 40 mile, 60 mile or an 80 mile challenge in an allotted amount of time. The campground is very large with wide open space and drop toilets. There is a small shelter with electric and there are a few electric poles as well. You have to get a permit to camp there. There is an astronomy field, hiking trails and a boat dock down the road. It works great for our event!

Amazing campground away from it all!

A nice mix of electric and non electric sites in the trees. Great place to relax with family. Great for unwinding. You have to drive down to the lake to boat and swim but worth it. Every Sunday there is a brunch buffet at the Lodge. Worth the 25-40 minute wait! The camp hosts are super friendly!

Enchanted Forest

Hocking Hills State Park and the surrounding area is like a page out of a fairytale book. Cliffs, caves, hollows, and waterfalls galore make the hiking experience out of this world. The old man’s cave state campground is wonderful. You can hike into the old man’s cave area directly from the campground which makes it a unique place to camp. It is one state park that actually has full hook up sites as well as a wonderful swimming pool with the waterslide for the kids. The camp store is very nice but it’s not really accessible to bike for the kids due to a winding steep road and traffic. The seven hiking sites with in the Hocking Hills area are just Breathtaking.

Convenient to the trails

Camped there this last weekend. Facility cleanliness was fair, camp store was fair, plenty of trails close by. Rose Lake was really kool, both at night and during the day. Didnt see anyone catch any fish.

Classically Fun KOA

We loved our stay here! The owners are so friendly and welcoming. They had so much for kids to do: a swimming pond with inflatables, gem mining, banana bikes, and more. They showed a movie at 9pm on a big inflatable movie screen outside. Lots of other families there to hang out with.

The only downside was that the tent sites are close to the interstate, so there was A LOT of road noise all night. Otherwise, it was a great camping experience!

Amazing Cave Systems

My family has loved going to Old Mans Cave since I was a wee babe. The campsite and surrounding park have tons of awesome amenities including hiking trails, backpacking trails, swimming, established camp sites, remote campsites, and other hocking hills tourism activities. The campsites include a wide variety of secluded and non secluded locations to choose from, depending on your comfort sleeping around other campers.

Awesome Backpacking

Great location to earn some backpacking miles. Feels quite remote, but along the trails there are shelters, bathrooms, trash reciprocals, and other useful hookups. When camping and hiking here, you feel space and distance from other campers, with the perks of established facilities.

Best Camping Near Athens

The go to camping location for Athens. Many campsites, trails, and amenities. Anything from boat rentals, a small store, and docks to use near the lake. Strouds also has a beach with a volley-ball net! All walking and biking distance from most of the cabins.

Great Secluded Location

Wildcat Hollow is a fantastic free camping and backpacking location. It’s quite secluded, has well established trails, and has a variety of remote campsites to choose from. There is a small shelter with bathrooms and other amenities, but not much else.

Great Lake View

Lake Snowden is a great alternative to camping at Strouds. The lake is large and clean, with an awesome new “water park” opened during the summer. Great shelters, facilities, and optional bathrooms.

Perfect Rainy day

The site was nice Pool and staff awesome Bathrooms horrendous and disgusting The Hiking was amazing

Great stay!!!

Out week long stay at Hocking Hills State Park was very good. Showers were hot and the women’s restrooms were very good. My husband frequently found the men’s restroom in need of attention, papers and litter on the floor, limited clothing hooks and need some tile repairs. Very much appreciated the non reservable sites that have been continued in Hocking Hills, while discontinued in many Ohio state parks. The close proximity to a number of interesting small towns and restaurants was enjoyed. Great proximity to many, many amazing hiking trails. We would return!

Great stay

Nice campsites! Clean, hot showers. So much to do in the area! 23 sites are set aside as walk-ins. If you arrive on a Thursday or early Fri., you are likely to score a site in this very popular park. Pool. Logan nearby with good food and shops.

Great little gem!

I was a little skeptical about camping at a canoe livery, but I apparently had no reason to be!  This place was great.  Small campground, each camping space was private enough and had woods around it.  It was quiet and was family friendly or good for just a group of friends looking to let loose.  I will definitely be staying here again.  Only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is because it was a little pricey for a campsite.

Very nice park

It is checked on by staff, and they are very helpful !!

Wonderful overnight spot.

Just wanted an overnight spot to clear our heads and enjoy the outdoors.  Parked our RRT in the parking lot on a Monday evening and had the place pretty much all to ourselves all night.  Clean pit toilet. Nice trails to walk. nice area to visit i'll be back againg sometime this year.