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Chattanooga, TENNESSEE

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Ranger Review: Banner & Oak lifestraw water bottle at Stone Door Campsite

Campsite: Stone Door review

This campsite is great for novice primitive campers. The campsites are secluded, but very close to the parking lot. There is an outhouse and drinking water close to the campsites. Each site has a fire ring and plenty of space. 

There is a parking lot for overnight campers/hikers. There is also a lovely pavilion with grills for day hikers. This site is obviously close to stone door and Laurel Falls. You can also hike over to Ranger Falls on the Big Creek Gulf Trail. I did the Big Creek Rim trail. It was relatively flat, but had some beautiful overlooks. A great campsite with easy accessibility to great trails. Book ahead of time as campsites fill up quickly on weekends! 

Product review: Banner & Oak lifestraw water bottle 

As a ranger, I get to test products occasionally. I took the Banner & Oak lifestraw water bottle hiking with me. It very easy to use. You follow the instructions for first use, and then you can fill the bottle with any water source. I think it works because I did not get sick! The most difficult part is storage. You have to follow the directions for proper storage of the bottle. You have to properly dry the filter before storage. I liked it more than drops I have used in the past. Pretty awesome that the purchase of this bottle gets a child clean water for a year!

Awesome Campground on the water

This is an awesome campground on a large lake with fairly secluded sights. Cell phone service was pretty spotty which became an issue while trying to do some hiking. Their are a number of activities available including, hiking, biking, fishing and boating. This campground is extremely family friendly, almost too much for our liking as there were kids EVERYWHERE. There is a large beach area and an event center where they hold daily shows and classes. They even have a put-put course on sight. Bathrooms and facilities were well maintained, clean and plentiful. This is an extremely large campground! My biggest complaint would be the lack of markings on hiking trails. We had a hard time finding some of the trailheads even with the maps provided at the main office. I would like to make a trip back here during the week to avoid some of the crowds but outside of that this is an outstanding place to camp. Even with the weekend crowd we very much enjoyed ourselves!

Very nice campground

The staff was super friendly and very helpful. The bathhouses were clean and plenty of hot water for the shower. Our campsite was large with a fire ring, BBQ grill and picnic table. Also, had a lantern post. We stayed at site A which was down a steep slope but, we had a nice view of the lake and even went for a swim right from our campsite.

Primarily an RV park

I’m giving this campground 4 stars as an RV park, not as a good spot for tent camping.

There were pros and cons, so I’ll start with the cons- the campground is surrounded by what looked to be a mobile home community. If you stay in an rv site, you probably won’t notice this, but the tent with electric sites are on the outer loop, so we noticed, and heard commotion from the road and community well into the night. The tent/electric sites were slightly wooded, but most are basically in the back yard of said community, so you don’t really have the “camping in the woods” feeling. We were the only occupants of tent/electric and there was not a single tent in the primitive field. The campground is pretty pricey also, compared to other places I’ve stayed.

Pros- This grounds was very clean and well maintained. Every site has gravel, and they had a pile of fill gravel, so I guess they fill it in when it gets low in spots. The restrooms and showers were also very clean and well kept. While I believe there are some long term residents here, the sites were not very cluttered as many are at other parks.

The campground is really close to the exit, and several restaurants, and really close to Chattanooga. There’s a camp store with essentials, including ice and firewood. There’s a pool that looks to be very clean and well maintained.

This is a great spot to spend the night if you are visiting Chattanooga and just need a place to stay close by, but I would say if you are just wanting to camp out, you could find a better spot in the great outdoors for that.

West Rim Walk In

Stayed at site #21 which was about a 1/4 mile from the parking lot and bath house. There was also a short trail to the road which made loading/unlaoding gear easier than hiking it all in. Great camp site that had easy access to West Rim Loop trail. Camp site was large, nice fire pit with cooking grate, picnic table, and nice tent pad. Could not see any of our neighbors from our site but some of the other camp sites were closer to each other.

Great views and lots to do.

Some of the sites have excellent lake views. Not too stacked. Nice beach with easy walk around the lake. Great for kids.

Awesome Campground on the Hiwassee River

This is a quaint little campground right on the Hiwassee River. A number of the sites are less than 15 yards from the river through some thickets. Each site has a cut out with access to the river. My favorite part of this campground is the ability to hear the river from pretty much anywhere in the campground. If you are looking for activities this Campground/Park is awesome for hiking, horseback riding, kayaking/tubing, fishing or just flat out relaxing to the sounds of the Hiwassee River. The restrooms are clean and sites fairly spacious. There is an awesome playground for those wanting to bring their children and the campground overall is extremely family friendly.

III Rivers Farm

Absolutely love this farm. Multiple sites to camp, plenty of room for everybody, and very secluded! Can’t wait to go back later this fall

Mountain Festival

A group of friends met here for the Mountain Festival. In addition to an awesome time checking out food and craft venders there are some awesome trails and overlooks. There are several campgrounds to pick from. We were in D which is best for small campers and tents. Some of these sites are really close together, others have a lot of space to set up. There is a nice group camp site in the trees and some secluded sites on the back loop. The showerhouse is a little old but functional. Fall Creek Falls is going through renovations and they have some new areas already opened for your enjoyment. Zip lines, a nice swimming pool, an amphitheater, swing bridges, awesome waterfall overlooks and some strenuous climbs that are worth the journey.

Great Time

Had a pleasant stay. Lots of good hiking and fresh air. Bring your own firewood!

Friendly staff

The weekend we decided to stay was the same weekend a water main break happened in downtown Chattanooga,  leaving everyone without water. The staff was tremendous!  They took it in stride and did everything they could to make it a comfortable stay. The campground was well maintained and we loved the pool! We will be back again to check out the cavern and pan for some gems.

Nice, private, little spot

Sweet little spot. Just stayed Saturday night. Got there about 7 pm and there was one spot left. Only 5 campsites at actual hickey gap. The pavement ends and it’s a 6 mile,well maintained, windy gravel road. You’ll come to a fork in the road where hickey gap is on the right, with day parking, then down in the holler there’s the campsites. They sit along mill creek. The sit is well maintained, not overgrown. Nice flat tent pads. Trees for enos/hammoks. Remote area that isn’t not very traveled. Shaded by tree cover. There’s what people called a water hole swimming area down the creek a half mile hike but it hadn’t rained much so it wasn’t very full but still cool! There are outhouse/vault toilets, but we’re kinda nasty and had maggots/bugs in the waste. The fire pits have grill gates attached to them. Beware of what we were told are Japanese wasps that are huge and like lights. They didn’t really serve as a problem to us but our camp neighbors got stung. Given that we did have cintronella candles burning.

I would recommend going if your not afraid of primitive camping!

If you paddle GO!

If you paddle go to ridgeway recreational area. Put in, go right short paddle to Waterfall. Go left into the unknown. Everything's at a 65 % slant. 5$ to park. Far off the hwy. Warning tho as I was leaving, the churning, burning, stinky jet skiers were putting in.

If you paddle GO!

If you paddle go to ridgeway recreational area. Put in, go right short paddle to Waterfall. Go left into the unknown. Everything's at a 65 % slant. 5$ to park. Far off the hwy. Warning tho as I was leaving, the churning, burning, stinky jet skiers were putting in.

Small, but beautiful

Hickey Gap is located in the Cohutta Wildlife Management Area in Georgia. The area is beautiful, undeveloped terrain, and the campground was surprisingly clean and well maintained. The campground is small, with only 5 spots, and it is first come, first served, so might be hard to get a spot during busier times, however camping is allowed in the WMA, so you could always backpack in to find a great spot. I noticed someone had a campsite across the creek from the campground.

The sites are primitive, but all had a tent pad, fire ring, and picnic table. All are heavily wooded, but the first ones are less private. All are right on the creek.

There’s a pit toilet, but it was so gross and stinky, I could not even walk in the door, so I’d say just plan to just use nature’s facilities!

Beautiful area, nice camping area if you like free primitive camping, and don’t mind some neighbors!

Nice Hidden Campground

Nice campground right off the highway, but remote enough to feel like you’re out in the sticks. Tons of trees and lots were large with plenty of parking. Friendly staff and activities while I stayed there.

Great Views

This park is fantastic if you are looking for views.  The hike along the rim will take your breath away.  The hike down the canyon is long and a bit strenuous, but at the bottom is a huge cave that can be explored a bit.  Have help with you though, as the cave can be tricky to climb out of….and you will get muddy!

Relaxing River Camping

We visited Gee Creek Campground, located in the Hiwassee/ Ocoee Rivers State Park in a Sunday, and there was hardly anyone there. We had our choice of sites! The Hiwassee and Ocoee Rivers are known for great white water rafting, and there’s several outfitters in the area.

The campground is right on the river, and you can actually hear the river flowing nearby. The sites are fairly wooded, spacious, and all we saw were very level. None of the sites have electric or water hookups. They all have fire rings and picnic tables. The campground is very quiet at night, with just the sounds of the river.

There’s a group camp area, which looked like a field for dispersed camping. There’s a large playground too.

I only saw one bathhouse, so if the campground was full, might be an issue, but it was nearly empty when we were there so it was ok. They were very clean and well maintained.

Nice, quiet spot to camp near the river!

Great family vacation

We arrived at this place and was taken on the views it has. The park had easy access and great cabins. The hikes to the waterfalls was challenging but well worth it. The campground store was great and friendly.

Quite Simply My Favorite Place I Have EVER stayed!!!

This is literally my favorite place I have ever stayed anywhere in the world! I’ve done my fair share of camping and traveling and I have yet to find anywhere I would rather stay! The attention to detail in the cabin/treehouse and greenhouse bathroom is like nothing I’ve ever seen! Everything from the books/games on the shelves, artwork on the wall to the Jack Daniels barrel vanity in the bathroom is thought out and perfect for this place. The owners/builders Mitch and Lori were absolutely amazing to work with and made sure we had everything we could ever want and more available to us on the property. This is such a peaceful place to get away and perfect for those who aren’t a big fan of your typical camping experience of “roughing it.” My wife and I already have our next visit scheduled! Do yourselves a favor and book your trip to this property ASAP! I promise you will not be disappointed!

Camping and boating

One of the best places to be able To camp and boat. We where at Chester Frost for July 4th. Love staying on the lake front and watching the sun set.

Great Lake sites

Great lake side sites with fantastic view. Fishing dock and playground. Very convenient to Chattanooga.

Family Reunion

Love this place. We come here every year for our family reunion. So much to do.

Really nice getaway very peaceful and quiet

Love visiting this place lots of trails and hikes nature area waterfalls very good place for family and gets to visit

Nice campground

Fort Mountain State Park is a nice place to camp! The drive to the park is very scenic, with 180 degree Mountain views. The park has a small lake with a beach and swimming area, kayak and aqua bike rentals, fishing, mountain bike trails, hiking trails, a mini golf course, playground, and picnic areas throughout.

The campground has two main loops, lake side and creek side. Both are gated, so you will need a code to enter. We stayed in the lakeside loop on site 62. It was a very spacious site, plenty of shade, “waterfront” (none of the sites were exactly on the water, but paths through the woods to the water) There’s a trail around the lake too, I believe it was just under a mile long. Most of the sites in the lake loop were great, all wooded and most of them have a view of the water, you can’t go wrong with any of them.

There’s an area called “Squirrels nest” and I believe it was a tent area that looked really cool, I would like to stay here with a group! It is located in the lake loop. There’s some backcountry sites in the park also, I planned to hike to one to check it out, but the trails aren’t marked very well and I couldn’t find my way without driving to a trailhead so I didn’t see them. The hiking was disappointing to me, but I’m accustomed to Smoky Mountain hikes.

The creek side loop looked nice through the woods when I hiked by, but I didn’t actually go through the loop.

The restrooms were great, very clean, very spacious showers. Modern and well maintained.

There’s a store at the campground check in, it has ice, firewood and other essentials, plus some souvenirs and such. They gave me a trail map along with the campground map.

The day use area (beach, picnic, mini golf area) was SUPER crowded on Saturday, so be aware if you plan on using this area, might want to plan on staying mid week.

Nice wooded, level spots throughout the campground, great spot to camp.

Hanfs down our favorite camp ground ever

Absolutely beautiful waterfalls, fun activities, and clean camp sites.

Nice and Quiet

This place has a nice camping spot with plenty of shade.

Nice place

This is a nice place beautiful quiet has a creek running through it 2 1/2 mile walking trail covered with older growth trees great to bring your family for a barbecue or stay the night there’s no power but it has water Great for small trailers I would try to stay under 25 feet my grandchildren played in the natural spring and creek pretty much the whole time we were there there is a large area covered for bigger functions I believe up to 60 people we enjoyed it

Secluded and shaded

This campground offers well-shaded, and secluded sites. Beware of the raccoons. They are very clever. I spent a little time raiding their trash stash.

Amazing hideaway

It’s quite on private land small campground, the beach is tiny kind of secluded, bath house is near, it’s definitely in the woods, mountain biking is amazin