Ch. A.

Rockville , MD

Joined August 2019

Car camper with kids & dog

Close to the beach, clean, but cramped

We camped here with two tents for four nights in July 2020, and were impressed by the proximity to the beach (five minutes through the dunes, even with kids who whine about carrying things and a small puppy who needs to stop and smell everything) and general organization and cleanliness of facilities.

But the campsites are not very big and hardly separated from each other, especially those on inside of the loop (even numbers). Campsites on the side of the loop closest to the road are really close to the road and there is a lot of road noise (a dune in the middle of the loop helps dampen the sound on the lower-numbered side).

Official access to the bathhouse is only from the side nearest the office, so it’s a ways to go if you’re on the other end of the loop. Official access to the beach is between sites 9 & 11 and 19 & 21, but all the odd-numbered tent sites on that side of the loop have their own little paths.

Showers are cool/ambient temperature water only and unlit.

I would not advise camping here in summer without some sort of shade shelter. They are not joking when they say it’s exposed and there’s no tree cover.

Staff was helpful, friendly, and demonstrated good social distancing.

Local/federal regulations permit driving on the beach, and we had a weekend afternoon hemmed in by pickup trucks, even being honked at for “crossing the road” on foot, but weekdays were not so busy or rude.

We’ll go back if we can get an odd-numbered site below about 21.

Lovely campground, nice hiking with kids

We spent several nights here with kids aged 5-12 and will definitely come back. We live in Montgomery County and this is a nice camping get away close to home. We stayed in Loop E, where the majority of the campsites were set back a bit off the road, well spaced, and nicely shaded. We took a couple of walks through Loop A, and this seemed to be the case for those sites as well. We were a group of 5 and used 2 4-person tents. The tent sites all have a tent pad (great drainage during a downpour!) but the tent pad isn’t big enough for two tents. So beware if you intend to use two tents that most, but not all, of the tent sites seem to have a patch of level ground where a 2nd tent can be pitched. On Saturday there were fun activities for the kids all day (pedal cars, crafts, water balloon baseball, laser tag, to name a few from memory), with some activities also on Friday evening and Sunday morning. A fee is charged for some of these (laser tag and craft supplies) but most are free. There is a small arcade-style game room (with free wifi in the building) where we passed a rainy morning. Air hockey, table soccer, and a small basketball game could be played for free, but pool and the video games required $.25-1.00 per game. We used perhaps 5 miles in total of the hiking trails, doing loops down to the creek and back. They were all manageable for a 5-year old and the kids enjoyed playing in the stream in warm weather. We did see poison ivy at the edges of some trails. There is some distant ambient noise from 270 and overhead air traffic, but nothing too bad. If coming with kids, I would recommend bringing a playground ball and/or basketball so you can use the gaga pit or basketball courts even when no games are organized by camp staff. Also note that there was no ice in the camp store for the duration of our stay, but ice can be bought at the Liberty gas station and the small Clarksburg Grocery, both about a mile from the campground.

Update after also staying in Loop A several times: I might just be imagining it, but the tent pads seem bigger in Loop A. We we able to jigsaw our two 4-person tents and a single on the pad in site 6. Poison ivy noticed in the site, camp staff brought us gloves to take care of it and a free bundle of firewood by way of apology.

Beautiful but noisy (updated)

Updated after a second trip (August 2020) This campground is generally really lovely, lots of trees, good Chesapeake beach access, but not very well designed for tent camping. Some of the sites are as I observed on our first trip, but all are not created equal. A lot of them are small and close to the camp road and run right into each other (no privacy) and lack sufficient flat space to pitch two tents. So many of the camper/RV sites have lots of flat private space behind where the RV would be parked, which would be great for pitching tents. The map is not to scale; sites 130, 132, and 133 back on to site 84, for example. Site 83 backs on to site 93, which in turn is open to 94. These three would be nice for a large group camping together. The sites on the east side of the campground back right on to the boundary fence of the neighboring military base (barbed wire fence). Restroom capacity (in COVID times) is supposedly limited to the safe number of 10, but 10 would be way too many. Four stalls and three sinks do not work out to 360+ square feet of space.

Initial review (August 2019) The tent sites at this campground were gorgeous. Deep and private-feeling and well shaded. But so close to the road. I saw the map that clearly indicates Shore Drive running alongside the campground and I thought, “It can’t be that close!” But it is. Four lanes of 55mph traffic running within 25 yards of all the tent sites on the south side of the campground.

We had such a fun time, despite the noise and lack of sleep, that we will almost certainly go back, but will definitely book one of the interior loop sites or maybe even one of the 20’ camper sites instead. Additional points: multiple daily nature programs for all ages in summer, really helpful staff, but the “camp store” doesn’t sell many camp supplies or groceries except ice and firewood.