Janet R.
Bemidji, MN
Joined November 2017
Biogeographer, explorer, adventurer
Not a campground

This listing is a duplicate for the Warba American Legion campground. There is no campground in Warba center, the actual campground is just to the west on Hwy 2, see correct listing and review for Warba Legion Campground

Ranger station but not a campground

This is a great spot to stop for info on the National Forest, recreation maps, and tips on good camping sites etc, but aside from being a Ranger Station and info center there is NO CAMPING at this location

Thoreau never had it so good!

What a privilege it was to spend a night here! I had been out of town and away from home the previous week, so decided I would stop here on the long drive home in order to break up my trip. It wasn't just good stopover, though, but turned into  a great mini-retreat to restore body, mind and spirit. 

This listing for the Creekwood Cabin is a new listing on the “Hipcamp” website, which is like Airbnb for private campgrounds, campsites, camper cabins, etc, that are located on privately owned  properties like farms and vineyards. The Theisens, Todd and Sarah, are the stewards of this beautiful farm which is focused on organic, sustainable and restorative land practices on acreage that is a scenic mix of prairie, forest, wetlands, and rolling hills. They have free range cows, pigs and chickens who roam the farm freely and who are pretty happy campers themselves, it seems! 

The Theisens also have a traditional woodcraft and wood products business using sustainable harvest of hardwoods on their land, turning downed trees into planks for hardwood flooring, wall panelling, countertops and other artisanal woodwork for area homes. They also craft more practical items, for example currently in production when I was there were several outhouses to be used at the future tent campsites they are setting up in various wooded groves on their farm, and also  in the works is  the production of several tiny homes that will serve as camper cabins on their farm. Any leftover treewood not used in their products is either chipped and used as woodchips for the miles of walking trails they are setting up on hill and dale all over the property, and for sawdust for their composting toilets for their guest facilities. As of yet, the tent campsites and tiny house camper cabins are still being constructed and are a “work in progress”, but given what I saw will be really wonderful when finished.

I had the wonderful opportunity to stay in their recently opened Creek Wood Cabin, which is an amazing showcase of both their hospitality and their best artisan woodwork.  This cabin is set in a shady grove of mature trees on a hill overlooking a peaceful pond and marsh. I was serenaded all night by frogs and owls and more. The cabin is constructed with all local materials, including of course woodwork from their own trees. The cabin has a full working kitchen including microwave, stove, fridge and sink, so you can bring and store all you need for your own meal prep. There is one open bedroom with a comfy double bed on the main floor, and two more double beds in the sunny loft above. The sitting area is complete with two rocking chairs and a library of amazing books related to sustainable living, simplicity, camping, and various topics to restore the spirit. There are large sunny windows on all walls which makes the cabin sunny and cheerful and makes the interior woodwork glow with warmth. There is a wood stove and a well stocked wood box, but there is also electric baseboard heat if needed. Contrary to the original description in their listing, there is now  running water in the cabin, with an on-demand water heater, so yes, hot showers and plenty of water for drinking and cooking. However, note that  the toilet is an efficient low -mpact composting toilet so be prepared to "flush with sawdust" instead of water when using the facilities! Next to the cabin is a heavenly sauna that is set up for either dry or steam saunas. I loved having a sauna before bedtime and then sleeping soundly til the rooster crowed at sunrise. 

When I had arrived the night before, Todd took me out in his RTV to tour the whole farm to see all the animals and the farming and woodworking operations, and also showed me all the trails I could go on. So, when the rooster called me forth the next morning I knew just where to go for my morning walk. When I returned, I read for a while and journaled for a while til Sarah showed up at the cabin door with a basket containing my piping hot breakfast complete with fresh scrambled eggs from their henhouse!. After breakfast, I visited the cows and their calves in their peaceful meadow, including one calf who was pals with the Bernese mountain dogs of the farm and preferred to frolic with the dogs rather than the other calves! Then more resting, writing and relaxing in the cozy cabin before continuing in my way.

I would have to recommend this cabin stay as one if the loveliest I have experienced, and I know I will be back for more! In summer, guests would enjoy being on the farm itself and learning all the Theisens share about simple low impact living and sustainable farming and restorative land management. If staying here you could also visit like-minded facilities such as the organic gardens or art studios of the nearby College of St Benedict, or the solar farm or Arboretum and restored prairie at nearby St Johns University. St Johns and St Bens also have myriad hiking trails and places for meditation both indoors and out. Guests of the cabin can easily access both campuses just minutes away by car or bike, with additional biking further afield on the nearby Lake Woebegone state bike trail. During the school year there are myriad cultural activities on both campuses that cabin guests could take advantage of, and a winter time stay would also be lovely with the chance for snowshoeing or cross country skiing on the farm itself or in the area, as well as the chance to just rest, read, write and restore in the peace and quiet and coziness if the cabin. It would be the kind of retreat that Thoreau himself would heartily recommend, but Thoreau never had it this good in his own cabin! Come check it out for yourself, or come for the tent camping or tiny house experience as soon as those options are ready!

Great for bikers and more!

This is a typical small town municipal campground that is part of the city park. The main community ball park is located here, along with several playgrounds, volleyball fields, picnic shelters, and a Veterans memorial. There are several camspites with hookups that are very suitable for RV's, and also a tenting area. While not a place to go for a camping vacation destination in and of itself, it would be a great place to stay if visiting the area, attending local events such as the Lake Woebegone Marathon or local fairs etc. However, it happens to be adjacent to an official trailhead of the SooLine spur of the Lake Woebegone Bike Trail, and as such is an awesome place to overnight if on a multi day bike or hike trek on the trail! many people do day trips on this beautiful trail, but having a really nicely set up overnight camping stop for cyclists and hikers makes longer trips possible, which is really great. There is a modern, well kept bathroom facility in the campground and another right at the trail head, and the main street in town in adjacent to the campground so cyclists can easily get to cafes, hardware store, get groceries, whatever. One of the most beautiful covered bridges in Minnesota is also on the bike path over the river adjacent to the campground. A major shout out regarding the local bike rental place in town: if you are an elder or in anyway disabled, they have bike-peddled surreys that seat 2, 4 or 6 people, and the RENTAL IS FREE to groups peddling together with a friend or family member who is disabled or can not bike on their own due to illness, handicap, or age. This is an awesome, awesome policy! So, lots of good reasons to take advantage of the camping opportunity offered in this small, pretty, friendly small town!

Great example of a northwoods camping resort!

I am a tent camper and usually prefer primitive wilderness camping, thus I dont usually consider staying at RV campgrounds or resort type campgrounds. This place would have to be an exception if you wanted a really comfortable camping opportunity on a really beautiful lake! Located not far outside the quaint town of Park Rapids, and great for a variety if day trips to state parks and in state bike and water trails, the campground and the lake it is on is a pleasant destination in and of itself. Most folks are here with RV’s, but there are also camper cabins for glamping, and several tent-only sites that are large and wooded and in great locations near the lake and other campground recreational facilities like the lodge, the beach, the pool, and the game barn. The grounds are heavily wooded and beautifully maintained, the atmosphere is very family friendly, and the lake is great for swimming, fishing and boating. Lots of “resort amenities” without the resort prices, and campers have free access to a fleet if canoes and kayaks. Weekly, monthly and seasonal rates, plus many perennials store their boats and RVs here over the winter. Highly recommended for a northwoods retreat for all kinds of campers!

Now a private basecamp

This was previously one of many canoe campsites on the Crow Wing River water trail, formerly maintained by Huntersville Townsite. However, the campground was purchased by the private Huntersville Canoe Outfitters and is now their private basecamp, so no one can canoe here unless they are signed up for one of the private guided canoe trips offered by the Outfitters. Though the old Huntersville Township park sign is still standing at the entrance, a new sign has been posted near it stating it is now called Cynthia’s Campground. This is confusing; you would think it is still a public campsite for canoers on the WaterTrail, but it is actually off limits to the public. The owners are maintaining the campground with pride and it is certainly in better condition now than the other canoe campsites along the river, for which I might have given a 4 star rating, and reviews on the Outfitter website show that folks enjoy their guided trips with the outfitter. However, it is disappointing that canoe campers on their own are prohibited from staying here or even stopping, even though the site had been originally developed for and designated as an official Water Trail canoe campsite, hence my lower rating due to the exclusivity. If you want to arrange a guided trip with them, their website is: http://www.huntersvillecanoeoutfitters.com

Canoe campsite on the Crow Wing

This is yet another canoe campsite and canoe launch on the state—designated Crow Wing River Water Trail https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/watertrails/crowwingriver/index.html This is a good paddle-in stop or primitive camping destination. Though some if the campsite picnic tables have seen better days, the campsites themselves are in good shape, as is the canoe landing. The outhouses are decent and seem relatively new. Plenty of firewood provided. Scenic location and vistas along the river

Canoe Landing on the Crow Wing River

This is yet another canoe campsite and canoe launch on the Crow Wing River Water Trail: https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/watertrails/crowwingriver/index.html it is an easy 6 mile paddle to the next campsite downstream. The campsite is rustic, and the canoe launch a bit muddy, but the campsites themselves are large and the pit toulets in good shape. Although there is a dirt road access, in dry weather you could get an RV into the campground if you dont mind no hookups. It would be a good place to stay before launching a canoe trip. Plenty of fire wood provided as part of your campsite fee

Primitive camping on the Crow Wing Water Trail

This is one of several primitive campsites located along the Crow Wing River. Note: though the site may have been known previously as Little Round Hill campground on old maps, it is currently called Little White Dog campground as noted on campground signage and on the State Water Trail map. You can drive in or paddle in. Although the site needs a bit of maintanence, there seems to have been a bit less wear and tear in the site than Bullards Bluff further south, and perhaps its because of being more remote from the town of Wadena and perhaps less likely to be a destination for partiers. Plenty of wood is supplied, campsites are large and in a scenic setting, and the boat launch is in great shape. Picnic tables are in a bit rough condition, fire rings and pit toilets are decent shape. It is nice to have primitive camping opportunities along a designated canoe Water Trail, I just wish the maintenance of the campground was if higher priority to state and local officials

Crow Wing river campsite

This is the kind of location primitive campers might enjoy, and it is great that there are canoe launch sites and reasonably spaced Paddle-in campsites nearby along the river for canoe campers making a trip. So, bravo to the county for making that possible! However, though there are picnic tables and outhouses at the campground, maintanence is needed and appears to be a bit lacking. The site is remote but accessible on back roads which has pluses and minuses—and given the warning signs posted, there have been problems here with partiers and people shooting off firearms etc. So I would be a bit concerned about safety if camping alone, but a group on a canoe trip might enjoy stopping here for an overnight

Top marks for family camping

This is a nice quiet family oriented campground tucked into Wadena’s expansive and beautiful city park. There are nice wooded campsites for tenters and RVers, even some really nice camper cabins at very low prices. Beautifully maintained, with lots of trails and recreational activities spread throughout the park. This would be a great camping destination for families with young children, or folks in town for community events, or a really great base for cyclists or hikers who want to make day trips on the beautiful Leafy RIver Trail that runs right through the park

Decent wayside campground

This is a small well maintained campground in a small town community park. The camping prices are inexpensive and the facilities clean and well kept. Picnics, reunions and other community events like pig races can be held in the park, so this might be your local camping opportunity if attending local events. Other activities you could do in the area would be to trek on the local ATV trail, canoe on local streams and rivers, or visit the adjacent Amish community. A decent and inexpensive waypoint if travelling through the area. However, the campground is immediately adjacent to the main road which is a county and state highway, so the noise and traffic is a draw back.

Sweet little city park

This is a nice community campground tucked away into the city park of the small town of Clarissa. While it might not be a vacation destination for most campers, it would be a really great place to hold a family reunion or similar local camping event. As a Scout leader, I think this would be an ideal place to introduce young campers to camping. The park isnt huge, but it is very scenic, has a great playground and picnic area and ball fields, and has a scenic walkway with foot bridges on a switchback trail along a pretty meandering stream. The park is clearly a centerpiece of the community, and would be a nice waypoint for tenters or RV campers travelling through the area

Family friendly local campground

This is a quiet and fairly small but impeccably maintained campground located near the town of Long Prairie. It would be a nice family friendly destination for an easy lical get away. There are weekly, monthly and seasonal site rentals with RV hookups, plus they do have a fully furnished on-site RV available to rent for those who dont have their own. The owners clearly take pride in maintaining the campground and in building a friendly camp community for families

Forest meets prairie

This state park uniquely showcases an ecologic transition zone between hardwood forest, savannah, and prairie. There are also local history connections. As a bird watcher, I was very excited to see birds here that I dont usually see at home in northern Minnesota, and to learn a bit more about glaciation in this area and about prairie and savannah habitats. The park has self guided hikes, educational nature programs, and learning kits for birding and more that you can check out at the ranger station. The lakeshore is pretty, and the lakeside campground is green and leafy with mature trees but the campsites are very close together, and the beachfront and bath house are currently closed for renovation which puts a damper on waterfront activities. Away from the lake is another campground in the oak savanna section of the park, and this campground seems quieter with more spacious sites, although they are more open. The park’s camper cabins are located here and are in a very pretty setting tucked into a little hill, though a bit of a walk to the bathrooms and showerhouse. At both campgrounds there are nice ADA sites which are level, spacious and accessible, and also close to the bathrooms. I was at a conference in nearby Willmar, and this park is a good alternative for lodging if you need to be in the area. If you are really into learning more about prairies and local glacial geology, the nearby Prairie Environmental Learning Center is fantastic to visit, and lots of prairie pothole WMAs are also closeby for waterfowl watching

No longer a campground

This may have been a former campground, but the property has been recently sold and it appears that a new private lakehome is being built or renovated. The property is located next to the Henderson Lake public access, which has warnings that the lake is infested with invasive species so maybe this affected the campground’s popularity?

Nice family campground

This is a nicely forested family-oriented campground on the shores of Games Lake. Though not quite as nice as the nearby Sibley State Park, it has easy access to it as well as the Glacial Lakes bike trail, plus is set on a nice lake with fishing, boating, and swimming available. There is a nice community center too. The campground is owned by Kandiyohi County, and rates for tent camping or various levels of RV camping are very reasonable but only offered for weekly rentals.

Family Camping and more

This is an impeccably maintained city-campground that shows the local are proud of “Our Town” and native son Sinclair Lewis, the hometown American author. Just blocks from the original Main Street, the campground is in the west end of the beautiful lakeside city park. Not only can you camp here in safety and comfort in a family-friendly setting (neighborly camping community, great playgrounds, fishing at your doorstep while but but a close walk to Main Street for unique shops snd cafes) but there are a host of community events that happen in the park, including concerts at a beautiful historic bandstand, art fair and similar events, and an annual 4-day festival in mid-July that celebrates Sauk Centre and all things Sinclair Lewis. Campground rates are extremely reasonable ($15 a night for tent sites, $30 a night for an RV site with full hookups) plus there are weekly, monthly, and seasonal rates. This is a great place for retired local snowbirds to stay in the summer, and a nice regional camping spot for families with kids or folks who would like a home base for day trips in the area including treks on the Lake Woebegone Trail. Check out this local website for activity ideas! http://www.visitsaukcentre.org

Overall, High marks for great maintainence, convenient location, and family oriented setting; however, though the lakeshore is pretty, the lake does have a problem with zebra musells, and many of the RV sites are located pretty close together.

Limited appeal

Granted, I visited on a gray rainy day when a campground might not appear to be its best. However, having checked it out I would hesitate to camp here. Although clearly it has its fans as there are seasonal RV site renters, the campground has the appearance of a place where folks might gather to party after a day of hunting or fishing. There is a rudimentary playground, but the dominant feature is the bar which appears in rough shape, and there are signs up not about children at play, but about tipsy adults at play. It doesn’t give the best impression. There are daily tent sites and daily RV sites in addition to seasonal rentals, and the RV sites seem to have the basic hookups RVers would need, but the campground is basically open and mostly treeless which also doesnt appeal to me. The location is near a lake and lake access, but not actually on the lake though you can see it in the distance. The prices for site rental ($25 a night for tent sites, and $35 a night for RV’s) are probably lower than many area RV campgrounds, so that might appeal to some folks

Day use only

This is not a campground, just a picnic ground, day use area, and historic site of an old CCC camp