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Our first visit was in November and the fall color was stunning.
Early March for this visit and definitely winter scapes…but still beautiful.
Trout fishing just steps away from camp and we had the whole campground to ourselves for the night.
The afternoon hours did have some rambunctious local teens, but they kept to themselves. Can’t blame them - I’d have hung out here in my teens too if I lived close.
Just up the road on the main lake they are building a new restaurant overlooking the lake. They are getting a new office and other upgrades too.
Kayak rentals and horse rides nearby. Plus lots of hiking.
We booked a Deep Ford campsite online but were disappointed when we arrived. The sites were really close together with almost no privacy. There were a lot of people parked in the campground lot for fishing during the day, so it felt pretty cramped. Luckily, you can change your reservation online. We drove around to all of the different tent sections and found a much better option at Eagles Nest. It was wooded and the sites were more spread out. It had a stone fire ring, a table, a grill, and a lantern pole. There are no bathrooms nearby, but there are several throughout the park that are just a quick drive away if you really need them.
If you're looking for less crowded spots, it seemed like Eagles Nest and Lake Wayne Wallace were the best options.
Nice amenities. Clean bathroom. Well maintained trails. I look forward to coming back to rock climb. Great for a weekend away or a family day trip. In warmer weather we definitely would have went kayaking. The most exciting thing for us was to explore with minimal research of the area. It felt like a treasure hunt!
To my understanding you do need to park to pay.
I arrived after dark on December 27th. I had made a reservation (and paid the $15) through their website. When I got to the park, I followed signs for Paradise Cove and reached the camping area. I never found my exact campsite (#27) but it was completely empty so I took a different one and left a note in my windshield. The phone number on the confirm email forwards after hours to the lodge, and the person was very nice when I called but couldn’t help me.
It was a bit confusing once I got there and was trying to find my site, I went online again and found another website that said paradise cove camping was closed, but the guy on the phone said the online reservations are kept up to date.
Paradise cove is right by the bridge over the lake and I could hear and see traffic. Each site is numbered on the picnic table (hard to see, especially in the dark) and the bathrooms were closed. I never found the water taps.
In the morning, I was right on the lake, with lots of birds! It was beautiful despite the traffic. I would stay again but pick a different campground in the park.
Very pretty campground, clean and relatively quiet this time of year. A very few campers here the week of Christmas 2020. Firewood available at the camp host site. Very nice lake views. Birdwatching is pretty good. Check out Spiro Mounds and Heavener Runestone, less than an hour's drive from Wister Lake.
First time in the Ouachita national forest and we found a most excellent spot next to Lillard Creek off of 6010 Deadmans trail Rd. Would recommend a 4wd vehicle. There’s a short rock trail to go up to reach the campsite, also too narrow for my Tundra. Enough space for a family or if your going on a solo camp. Done hanging out at camp? There’s an awesome trail a little north of camp called Boardstand trail, take it east and you you can follow it to 8554 Red Bank, follow it south to Ouachita Trail, then follow it west until you reach Talimena Scenic drive, then you can walk along side the road to the Scenic view of where you were just hiking and bask in its glory! Next you’ll run up on 6010 deadman’s gap trail road again. Take it back down to your camp! Your back! It’s a good 6 mile hike that will get your heart going. Steep hills, beautiful waterways, gorgeous mountains! Nothing better! The creek water runs all the time so no need for your forest noise making machine. All the sounds you’ll need are by the fire and the Lillard Creek. It was a blast! Get out there and breath the fresh air! Peace and Love, Seth Armes
So sick of just sitting at home. Wait a minute …. we have a portable home. We have probably camped around 8 times since March. I we can do distance or virtual learning from any place that we can use the hot spot on our phones. Love the camping hate the “Rona”. Still haven’t caught any fish. Guess we’ll try again next year since we have winterized. At least for now….we shall see.
Even in November this is a great place to camp. In the Choctaw loop easy back in or pull thru sites. Very short walk to the lakeshore. Golf course in the park. Pet friendly. Close to tulsa too. There are shops just outside the park if you need propane or charcoal etc. Worth the trip!