This recreation area is part of J. Strom Thurmond Lake
Hamilton Branch is amazing! The sites are all lakefront and generously sized. Plenty of paved roads for biking, and kayaking on the lake was absolute perfection! My only regret is not staying longer. Can’t wait for the next trip!
We were at site 158 and had not only the lakefront view but easy lake access at our site. Bathrooms were kept pretty clean. Some of the sites are a bit of a hike to get to the bathrooms which is why it doesn’t have 5 stars. If I could have done 4 1/2 I would have. Only thing that would make it the perfect site would have been sewer hook ups, but those are rare in the SC State park system. Only one neighbor was close enough to be sort of visible but they were rarely there. It was nice and quiet and dark at the site in the evening, which is exactly how we like it. We went swimming, floating and fishing in the lake and never had to leave the site. Just wish we had booked a longer weekend as I was not ready to leave that view!
We went camping at Hamilton Branch State Park in October 2019 for a week. There are so many wonderful things to say about this campground.
1) Almost ALL sites are lakefront- There are very few sites that are not right on the water. There are some sites that have a steep drop off to the water(mostly the tent sites around the sites 123-128 range). We found several sites that we thought were the best. Sites 77, 168, 98, 97, 103, 105, and a couple of others I can’t remember. Nice views and access to the water.
2) Sites are very spaced out- We were there during a quieter time, so we had several sites around us that were empty, but even if they had been full, we thought there was a lot of space between them, and most faced the water, so they all kind of faced away from each other. So, it seems to be very private.
3) Park is LARGE- This is a huge park, and even though there are 200 sites, those are all distributed over 9 different areas, each area consisting of at least 1 loop each. So, again, very spaced out and private.
4) Clean Bath Houses- Obviously we stuck to the bath house closest to our site, but it was extremely clean and appointed. Toilets cleaned every morning. Shower clean with good shower curtains! If you have camped before, you have likely encountered shower curtains that were hanging on by their last 2 or 3 loops. We even brought our own, in case that was the case here. Nope, it was very nice to have the bathroom so well taken care of.
5) Friendly Staff- We had originally booked a specific site, and when we got there, we wanted to change it(due to the steep drop to the water, that would be hard to do every day with kayaks). We looked around the park to see what else would be available and Amanda at the front office was very helpful in checking for availability and helping us change our site. In addition to the very helpful Amanda, we encountered several camp hosts. Since the park is so big, there are multiple camp hosts. Everyone we encountered was friendly, helpful and seemed to enjoy being there.
6) Beautiful Lake/Nature- Obviously the big attraction here is the lake. Thurmond Lake is ENORMOUS. And the park is on one small part of it. We kayaked a few days and saw a lot of fish, bald eagles, geese, blue herons, white egrets, etc. At our campsite we saw a couple of deer and a few raccoons. For a 6-night stay, we only saw the raccoons one night. We must not have had very good tidbits ad they gave up on us.
We stated several times that we will be coming back to this campground, and that it might be one of the best we have ever been to. I hope this gave you some info and insight into this park.
Sooooo many beautiful campsites to choose from! Lots of trees and spaced apart. We camp here almost every other weekend during the warm months and once a weekend during the cooler months.
camp sites are nice with lots of room between other sites. can be reserved 11 months out. good fishing and swiming. prepare your site for ants they will get into everything if not.
Seems that all sites are on the water. Our site was raised up from the water and had a little drop down to access the water. A nearby site had a boat pulled up to theirs. There was lots of deer and made the hike to the bathroom worth it for us. No bitting bugs, but did find the first scorpion I have even seen in this state. Overall one of our favorite trips.
Lots of water sites on the lake. Some sites are a good long walk from the closest bathroom, so take a bike or golf cart with you. Great for bike riding. Lots of deer to see. Needs some updating in the bath houses and could use a couple more better spaced out.
Secluded sites allow for privacy. Great, helpful staff! Park is surrounded by a like and most sites have direct access to the water.