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.
Stayed two nights at Tar Hollow's North Ridge Campground, which is the tent only campground. Be sure to visit the "Camp General Store" to pick up your permit before heading to your campsite. If your GPS takes you to the North Ride campground, just drive past and continue on until you see the general store/putt putt area. Believe the camp store is open until 8pm during the week.
We were on site 106, which is at the far end of the campground. The campground is about 2-3 acres large, situated on a hill with a path dug out around the perimeter.
Some positives about the campground and site 106:
-the path around the hill allows for great drainage; a huge help if you're camping in rainy weather.
-the north ridge campground is in an entirely separate area of the park than the RVs and there aren't many campsites, so in that way it feels a little more remote and secluded.
-In addition to the path around the perimeter of the campsite there is a path leading up through the middle of the campground with the campsites situated on either side of the path. Since site 106 is at the far end, you don't have anyone walking by your campsite to and from the parking lot.
-Pine lake is a beautiful little spot to fish, rent a paddle boat, or just relax. There is also a pretty spacious beach area.
-There is a water spigot, restrooms, and a dumpster.
-There is no cell service. Enjoy the outdoors! You are off the grid!
Some negatives about the campground and site 106:
-You cannot park your car directly at your campsite. There is a parking lot at the bottom of the campground hill. You have to carry your items to your campsite. Depending on what site you reserved you could have to walk uphill for about 100-150 yards. This could be an issue for differently abled people. Also, it means you need to be crafty about securing your food at night if you don't want to walk it back down to your car.
-Many of the campsites are situated on pretty intense slopes. 106 wasn't too bad. I would guess 105 is probably the most level site in the campground.
-Site 106 is the farthest from the parking lot. Great for privacy, bad for lugging your stuff to and from the car.
-The bathrooms are pit latrines. Normally, I wouldn't be too concerned about this (you're camping! it's cool to rough it a bit!) However…these are some of the dirtiest I've experienced. The bathrooms are also very narrow and perhaps most importantly, they are not lit, so you have to make sure you bring your headlamp with you at night. I also couldn't get the latch to lock on the doors, but maybe that was user error. There is toilet paper and hand sanitizer (but I always double sanitized with my own sanitizer back at our tent--such was the state of these bathrooms.)
-The campsites are all pretty close together. We got lucky and there was no one next to us, but even so we could still clearly hear conversations at other campsites and folks snoring at night.
-There is no cell service. Be sure to give anyone who may need to contact you a heads up.
All in all, we had a positive experience and were glad we went. That said, there are better spots to tent camp in and around OH.
Stayed at the primitive campsites at the top of the ridge above the lake and all the RV and electric sites. The campground is great in that there is no tree cover so you have clear skies to view the stars. If it rains then it probably would not be the best location. The parking is separate from the campgrounds but its a short walk uphill, maybe no more than a 1/3 of a mile to the farthest site. Now there's like 12 sites or so and they're all great other than the fact that you are extremely close to your neighbors and you can hear EVERYTHING. there is little privacy to do "anything" since the other campsite is directly beside you. so if you plan on having amorous outings, wait for daylight where people are making noise or go somewhere where the campsites are a little more spaced apart.
It was a cold rainy day when I pulled into the park. I wasn't super impressed with the park. So, I opted to get back on the road. It was a quiet park with maybe 10 sites occupied.
They do have nice shelters but through out the park the bathrooms need updated. The camp sites by the lake held the most promise but then I saw warnings about sewage. They had an awesome putt putt site. Everything was locked up due to COVID-19 in terms of rentals.
Each site felt like it would be a muddy camping experience. The campground roads could use some care. I then went to the beach which looked nice but I wasn't sure if it was safe due to the signage.
The fire tower which is what I was most looking forward to was closed due to covid-19. It is a short drive maybe 20 minutes from the center of the campgrounds. The signs don't give an indication on how far or what a location is such as shelter house name.
I did find some trails and blazes. For backpackers look at the trail and campsite by the fire tower as that was a nice find. The markings could be improved upon for all of the trails.
Cell phone signal even with Verizon wasn't a possibility. Make sure you know how to get there and back to where you need to go. I used a paper map to reorient where I was after I popped out of the park after visiting the fire tower.
After being cooped up, we (3 young adults) decided to get out and decided on this campground that was new to all of us. The campground was very low key and made for an easy going weekend! We weren’t too keen on most of the parks amenities, but enjoyed just sitting around the fire the whole time. Pros: -staff was cleaning common areas (bathroom and showers) either once or twice a day -campsite 12 was incredible space and had an added bonus of a deck structure over the creek
Other notes: -WiFi available, but only right by the main office/general store -no service for AT&T or Verizon -Fire tower not accessible -Lake tested high for a bacteria and swimming is not recommended
Corona Virus Notes: -only Ice and Firewood available for purchase at General Store -putt putt, boat and bike rentals, and game box rentals not available -nearby Hocking Hills trails were closed
Beautiful, secluded group camping. Shelter and pit bathrooms. Wide open space for lots of campers. Nice access to trails. Beach area is clean & small little lake. Nature center & lots of activities near the camp store. Trails are not marked well. Thankfully we were not doing a backpacking trip. Beware if you are. We have heard some frustrating on the trail markings. Part of the Buckeye Trail runs through the park. They also have a thriving Timber Rattlesnake population. Watch your steps.
Great camping experience! Waited too late to book in hocking hills state park but found a site here instead. We are tent campers and stayed in site 106 on"Northridge". Loved that the non-electric tent sites were so isolated from the RV campers. Site 107 gets muddy with a lot of rain. Sites 108-112 have a pretty significant slope. Each site in the loop has a picnic table and fire ring. There's a dumpster, pit toilets, and water. It was a short drive to the rest of the campers, a great hot shower, fantastic general store, miniature golf, and the beach to swim or lake to kayak. Took us at least 30 minutes to drive to the common hocking hills hikes but well worth it. We would return.
We went to Tar Hollow state Park campground on April 11,2019 and it was as quiet as can be!! Not one camper by us. Perfect spot lot 71, it has plenty of room for a couple tents or pop up and tents and still have room for 2-3 cars. But this is probably the only campsite you can do that in. The rest are tight and with little to no space. Lots 1-27, I would say are for campers, RVs etc very little to no space for tents. Lots 67-70 I would say are for tents. Tight road getting in and out. Lot 71 I would say is for both tents and campers. Behind lot 71 is woods so you can do off trail hiking. Be ready for a climb but it’s pretty. There’s a playground for the kids and a wooden swing for the parents to sit and watch there kids. The bathrooms down on this site are pit toilets but the bathrooms by lots 1-27 have flushing toilets and that is where the shower house is located. I don’t recommend lots 32-37 because from what can see you have to drive through the grass to get to them. Lots 30-31A would be nice it you have kids (not toddlers) because there’s a small stream to play in and on the other side of the stream is the playground. The stream is only like 3 ft wide so easy for kids to cross but yet parent can sit at campsite and watch kids at playground. Staff was nice but rarely saw a ranger. General store did say they just opened today. I would probably never come here when it is busy. I would have no idea how everyone would drive by each other roads are not wide and some campsites have little space to park. But for as of now - beginning of season its great! There is a small beach that we didn’t go to and a movie screen that we didn’t go to nor know if they use. The store staff said there is fish in the lake. Naturally breed not stocked.
Very open campgrounds. Not a lot of family amenities. Great hiking trails for every level.
I can see how this state park appeals to families- there is putt putt, a cute general store, an outdoor movie screen, a small beach and paddle boats. But if you don't have kids, I'd find a better place to camp.
The campground sites are tiny and all squished together. I had a literal 9-foot rectangle of grass, right up against RVs on both sides. It didn't help that the families, who were mere feet away from me the whole time, spent the weekend screaming at their kids and dogs (four dogs with one family. Four. Why aren't there rules about that?) and later beating their dogs. Yep. I got to see dog beating all weekend long. That's the kind of clientele this park seems to attract.
The trails didn't seem that great- barely marked, going through a dense forest, with not much to see besides the trees themselves. The "lake" is really a pond, or an extremely small lake. The swimming was decent but the bottom is quite slimy- bring water shoes if you want to swim.
Also, my campsite was literally 10 yards away from a disgusting pit toilet that reeked the entire time. Why do they put campsites right up against sewer pits? I had to breathe in feces fumes all weekend long, and I doubt that is healthy.
The shower was hot, I'll give them that. I will not return to this park. I called the reservation agency to tell them about my experience but they did not get back to me.