Standard (tent/RV)
Tent Cabin
Dispersed
Group
RV Sites
Tent Sites
Fires Unknown
Pets Unknown
Drinking Water
About Chilhowee Campground

Located in the Chilhowee Recreation Area, Chilhowee Campground offers a multitude of camping opportunities for both RV and tent sites, many with electric hookups. The day-use area includes McKamy Lake, a swim area with sand beach, picnic sites, a group picnic area, and a bathhouse. 

Be Aware; Do not use GPS directions: GPS coordinates will direct you up Benton Springs Rd. This route is not recommended. We recommend using Forest Service Road 77 to reach the recreation area. It's important to note, this facility requires driving 7 miles up to Chilhowee Campground on a narrow, winding road. Do not use the Benton Springs Access Road to the campground as this is an unpaved and dangerous road for RVs. Inexperienced RV drivers may have difficulties getting to and around the site.

Recreation

Chilhowee Recreation Area is an excellent hub for hiking and mountain biking in the Chilhowee Trails System, fishing in McKamy Lake, and wildlife viewing without having to get in your car. The 7-acre McKamy Lake offers a swim area with a sand beach, and fishing from the bank. Boats are allowed, but gasoline motors are not. Within the recreation area are approximately 25 miles of hiking and biking trails, and a scenic waterfall. The views and lake are beautiful, especially hiking to Benton Falls via a 1.5 mile in and out moderate trail. On the drive up to the campground, stop at one of the many observation overlooks to see beautiful mountain settings. Wildlife is abundant in this area, so have your camera ready and tread lightly. 

Chilhowee Recreation Area Map and Guide  

Facilities

Picnic tables, grills, and lantern posts are located at each site. Bathhouses providing flush toilets and warm showers are available in each loop, as well as in the day use area. Water hydrants are located throughout the campground. An RV dump station is located at the end of E Loop. Loops A and B offer walk-in tent sites with electricity.

Be Aware; Do not use GPS directions: GPS coordinates will direct you up Benton Springs Rd. This route is not recommended. We recommend using Forest Service Road 77 to reach the recreation area. It's important to note, this facility requires driving 7 miles up to Chilhowee Campground on a narrow, winding road. Do not use the Benton Springs Access Road to the campground as this is an unpaved and dangerous road for RVs. Inexperienced RV drivers may have difficulties getting to and around the site.  

Natural Features

The Cherokee National Forest is located in eastern Tennessee and stretches from Chattanooga to Bristol along the North Carolina border. The 650,000-acre swath of land is Tennessee's only national forest. It lies in the heart of the Southern Appalachians and is home to more than 20,000 species of plants and animals, as well as many rivers, creeks and lakes. 

Nearby Attractions

In addition to the immediate local activities, world class whitewater rafting opportunities are nearby on the Ocoee and Hiwassee Rivers.

ADA Access: N

Price
$12.00 - $30.00
Operator
USDA Forest Service
Access
Drive In
Walk In
Boat In
Features
ADA Accessible
Drinking Water
No Firewood Available
Phone Service
Picnic Table
Sanitary Dump
Sewer Hookups
Toilets
Trash Available
Water Hookups
Location
Chilhowee Campground is located in Tennessee
Latitude
35.1538 N
Longitude
-84.6091 W
Get Directions
Directions
The campground is located on FDR 77/Oswald Dome Road. Be Aware; Do not use GPS directions: GPS coordinates will direct you up Benton Springs Rd. This route is not recommended. We recommend using Forest Service Road 77 to reach the recreation area. It's important to note, this facility requires driving 7 miles up to Chilhowee Campground on a narrow, winding road. Do not use the Benton Springs Access Road to the campground as this is an unpaved and dangerous road for RVs. Inexperienced RV drivers may have difficulties getting to and around the site.   From Highway 64/411 intersection travel east 7 miles, turn onto Forest Road 77, drive 7.5 miles to campground/recreation area. Do not use Benton Springs Road for access to the mountain.
7 Reviews of Chilhowee Campground
Great place during lightning bug season!

This campground is great! It has clean bathrooms with showers, fire rings with grill grates, lots of hiking, hike to a beautiful waterfall, huge lake to swim or float on a raft, and the lightning bugs were breath taking!!

We stayed at site #39. Next to the trail that leads to the lake. Next to rest room, trash bin, and water spout. This specific site has the driveway and then stairs to the fire/table/tent pad. We set our large tent on the tent pad and a smaller tent on the driveway next to the stairs.

Pros: No reservation needed. Warmish showers. Hiking. Lake to swim in. Beautiful waterfall. Perfect to see millions of lightning bugs. Easy payment (put money in slip and put in bin, and yes they do check). Pets allowed.

Cons: we had the WORST neighbors I’ve ever experienced while camping! The staff warned them about quiet hours but never came back to in force it. Fire ring grill topper was broke off.

DON’T drive up the dirt path, we made that mistake. Take the regular rode. GPS sends you automatically to the dirt road.

Over all I’m defiantly going to camp there again. Well kept and overall has a lot to offer

Extremely Remote

Getting here was like Mr Toads wild ride.  Extreme inclines full of switch backs for a long 5 miles.   The rain did not help much.  Very scary.    Once arrived area well marked and easy to park.  Had electric but no water or sewer.  There are local spigots scattered throughout if you run out in your rig.   Small lake with fishing.  Nice hiking areas.  Love the blooming wild azaleas.   Close to the Ocoee River.

Perfection

I believe this place is the best campground I’ve stayed! They have tons of sites, and all are spacious and secluded. They do have some with electric hookups, but we didn’t have that, as we were in the rooftop tent. You can’t hardly see your neighbor with all the trees. We were in D loop #36, which was right across from the restrooms and bathhouse, and still we weren’t bothered with noise from a completely sold out campground on Memorial Day weekend. There is a nice little lake area for swimming and/or fishing, picnic areas, hiking trails, beautiful, scenic views, a group site and dispersed primitive area. Getting to the campground is a little tricky. There isn’t much signage to lead you to the campground, and the directions on the website aren’t very clear, we used the Waze app and it took us right to it. I absolutely can’t wait to return!

One of the most beautiful campgrounds I've ever stayed at.

If at all possible try to drive in during sunset and you will not be disappointed! There are multiple scenic overlooks with a absolutely breathtaking views. Campground, including restrooms is as well kept/clean as they can be. Campground was completely full and we still didn't feel crowded. Awesome hiking trails as well as a decent sized fishing/swimming lake (McKamey Lake).

Great site for large group camping!

I absolutely loved this site and hope to go back here soon! There is a beautiful waterfall called Benton Falls near this location and it is a very pleasant, short hike. Our location was very large and had bathrooms near and showers about a mile away.

Chilhowee

This campsite was beautiful. sites were clean. the bike trails were challenging. my only complaint is the bathroom. it's not that it was dirty. like most campgrounds insects get into the bathroom. I'm not big on sharing a stall with spiders.

First to Review
Chilhowee

My husband and I stayed here as our first camping trip as a married couple. It’s beautiful! There’s a small hike to Cumberland Falls, which is gorgeous!! We had a great time! Hot water for showers/restroom facilities.