The best HIKE IN camping near
Dayton , TENNESSEE

264 Reviews31 Campgrounds

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Most Recent Dayton Camping Reviews
Compact place

This campground had about 10 sites all very close together except site #1 which was right near the main parking lot the volt toilets stunk bad worse one I’ve been in we stayed for 2 nights and it wasn’t cleaned at all the iron bridge was pretty though!

Beautiful location

This campsite is large with multiple sites for tents, campers and RVs. Nice bath house and playground area. The hikes and waterfalls are gorgeous. Well maintained.

Great Campground

Amazing campground, with one of the best hikes around.

Short weekend trip

Went here for a weekend hiking and hanging out. Did know what expect and was positively surprised. Large sides, well spaced. Many hikes right off the campground and a nice waterfall. We will come back

Good stay

Overall good place to visit. Some sites are squeezed too close together but there are great sites scattered all throughout the park. It’s a large park with 4 camp loops, hiking is good with the main waterfall worth the walk into the canyon. The park seems well maintained and clean, bath houses were clean and had spacious showers. Only reason I didn’t give a 5 star review is with luck of the draw your site may be a little crowded.

Awesome Waterfalls

 Rock Island State park is a great place to camp. The campground is large and the campsites are spacious and far enough apart that you feel secluded, even when it’s full. It’s heavily wooded, so you don’t feel like your neighbors on right on top of you. The sites are paved and have water and electric, no septic where I was, however and they have a dump station that was large enough for two people to use at the same time. There are so many things to do at the campground, or the park, you will not be bored. Rock Island has some of the best waterfalls in Tennessee, and you can get right up to some them, if you are brave enough to kayak close to them. They also have a swimming area, and sand volleyball. Great biking in the park also. The area has lots of little shops and antique stores, if you’re into that, and Calf Killer Brewery is a short drive, and I highly recommend visiting there. Overall, this is a great park to visit, and a great place to camp.

Bridgestone- Firestone, Virgin Falls

Bridgestone-Firestone-Virgin Falls WMA This WMA is the cream of the crop. I think it’s the largest WMA I’ve ever been to. I think we had the perfect camp spot. Nice and level, wooded and secluded, fire pit already constructed, plenty of firewood around. If you love primitive camping, this place is a goldmine. There’s no shortage of great camp sites too. Virgin Falls is nearby, however the trail was closed due to Covid-19 restrictions. There is also a store there, but it was also closed. I was here back in spring turkey season, and there were only a couple other hunters that were camping that I saw. During hunting season, you can only camp here if you are hunting, but it is always free. This is a very nice choice for free primitive camping.

Virgin Falls Pocket Wilderness - Gem of a Place

This is one of my favorite areas to hike and camp. There are three official camping areas: Cable Crossing, Martha’s Pretty Point, and at Virgin Falls. There are two ways to get to the Point: the main trail (white blaze) and the Upland Trail (blue blaze). The Upland trail is about 2.4 miles to the point, is mostly a wide gravel logging road, and is easy until you get to a creek crossing in the woods where it is a little confusing as to which direction to take. We actually got a little lost in the woods on the last trip because it was overgrown at that spot and just wasn’t very obvious. But we retraced our steps and figured it out. Campsites 4-7 are up on the point. 7 is the largest and most secluded. 6 is also very nice. 5 is right along the main trail, across from the point, and 4 is right at the point, which sounds nice, but day hikers walk right through the site to get to the overlook. Part of the creek runs right below the point, past the ladder on the trail back down to the main trail (upland trail is somewhat of a loop). But don’t count on water. I hiked it two weeks before I went back and camped it. It was running when I hiked it, 2 weeks later it was dry despite having rained for days. We tarped rainwater the first night and hiked the half mile down to the creek on the main trail the next day for water. Finding a good tree to hang the food was no problem here, and we had no close encounters with any wildlife. We did hear coyotes in the distance the first night, which was nice. 

Campsites 1-3 are at Cable Crossing**. Campsite #1 is the most secluded of the three, with a rock wall on one side which is nice. But it’s the least level of the sites. I don’t like it because of that. Site 2 is flat, but small. Site 3 is large and flat. We had 4 tents there easily. These sites are right along the main trail, so there’s a lot of traffic. Wood to burn is very scarce here. But being at the creek crossing, water isn’t a problem. Water filter is a necessity for camping in this little wilderness. Finding a good tree to hang food here was impossible. We did the best we could, but if something wanted the food, they were going to get it. It was hung pretty low. We had no scavenger activity. I think the likelihood of bears here is very small, but we always hang because it’s a good habit. The hike in to Cable Crossing from the parking lot is pretty easy. A little harder than the Upland trail to the point, but still pretty easy. It’s Just past the intersection of the main trail with the Trail up to the point where this area starts to get strenuous. At this point, I have only been as far In as Big Laurel Falls (I really love Big Laurel). The hike from Cable Crossing to Big Laurel is no joke. I’d call it moderately difficult. But I’ve heard it gets even harder past there. I’m going to day hike the rest of it soon. I’ve just had so much fun exploring the first 2.5 miles of this place, learning all I can about the first half of it. 

**Just on the other side of the cable crossing is an “unofficial” campsite. It’s not a designated site, but it gets a lot of use and I’ve seen Forestry employees interacting with folks camping there and it seemed fine/acceptable.

Was a good place to stay. Convinient to some really Preatty watter falls

I moved to Falls Creek Falls to get away from Rain and storms to the Southeast.  I have a small Motorcycle camper and had a friend along with his.  the electric sites were a bit expensive for not needing hook ups.  30 Bucks a night but we put both campers on one site.  There are lots of facilities and the bathhouses are very clean and maintained.  There are stores onsite for knickknacks and soft supplies.  A restaurant/grill that has some pretty good food.  Firewood is available for 10 bucks a bundle.  It was Poplar wood and very green but you just have to know a bit about firewood and dig through the pile to find dry.    All the roads are paved and the sites are somewhat level.  The falls are worth seeing.  Even though I like more primitive surroundings, I will probably stay there again.

Excellent Journey Park

This is a KOA that is top of the line. Although it is a “Journey” Park, meaning usually it’s meant for short stays and traveling through, it is a park many would want to stay longer. They have great signage and it was easy to find the park.

We used the KOA app to sign up for a reservation.

They have RV Sites - full and partial hook ups, Cabins, Tent Sites, and lots of activities. The park is clean and well kept. It is quiet at night even being near an interstate. RV Sites are mostly level, there were a few that were not as level.

You are led to your site by staff at the park. The staff is very friendly and helpful.

Each RV site has a table and fire ring, some do not have sewer hookups but they use a waitlist system to get full hookups. This was a bummer since we paid for full hookups and we’re currently working, no one called to let us know- we were notified upon checking in. Fortunately we were only visiting the area for 6 days for work, and we know how to boondock well.

They are very pro-pet walking, with very convenient waste disposal and frequent pet waste stations.

Cellular service for AT&T and TMobile we’re both excellent.

The park is full every night and has lots of people in and out daily.