Lori H.

The Dyrt Pro

Knoxville, TN

Joined October 2018

Outdoor enthusiasts, lover of all things fitness oriented! Barbering to pay the bills!

Lake Camping

This campground is situated on Lake Allatoona, near Canton, just north of Atlanta. Pretty much all the sites have lake views, and they are spaced well enough so that you are not right on top Of anyone. The campground is gated, and the gates are shut between 10:30pm and 8am, so if you are arriving late, make sure you get in before 10:30! I believe all the sites have water hookups, even the tent only sites. There’s a roped off swimming area, and a boat launch, and plenty of sites with lake access. We did have cell service, but it can be spotty in places. We have Verizon. The bathrooms were really disgusting, they look like they hadn’t been cleaned in a very long time. There was some drama at night, two sites over from us where a group of young adults probably had too much to drink and were trying to fight, screaming profanities at 12:30am, fortunately someone called the police and they came and took care of the situation. Overall, this is a really good campground for summertime!

Smoky Mountain Gem

We stayed one night at Smokemont on a Saturday in September, and I was surprised how empty the campground was. It was rainy so maybe that deterred some campers, but we had a great time. We stayed in site D31, and it was perfect for the rooftop tent. None of the sites have electric, so you will hear some generators, that was really my only complaint. Other than that, the sound of the flowing River is wonderful. Was hoping to see some elk around, as they are plentiful in this area of the Smokies. Definitely will stay here again.

Favorite spot on the lake!

Yarberry Peninsula is such a great place to spend time, no matter what time of year you visit. This trip was in January, and it was chilly, especially on the lake front site I stayed on, but it is just so beautiful, you can handle a little cold to stay at such a nice place. I booked site 19, and it is waterfront, with so much space right on the shoreline. I highly recommend booking your spots very early, as it cam be difficult to get a spot during the warmer months. There is a campground store, it was not open when I was there this time, but usually is during warmer months. They have essentials, and rental kayaks and such. The campground is gated, so there’s not really any traffic passing through. The sites are all mostly level, and I think most have a lake view even if you’re not lakefront. They have boat slips for rent also. I’m really looking forward to staying here this summer!

Great Spot on Norris Lake

Loyston Point is a great campground on Norris Lake, which is known as one of the nicest lakes around. The campground has multiple lakefront sites, as well as lake view, and several wooded sites, if you are looking for more seclusion. There’s also some small cabins. Something for everyone here!

One thing to be aware of- not all the sites have a water spigot, several spots have a shared spigot, so he sure you have a really long hose if you are camping in an rv. I was in site 50, and was in between the spigots, so I’m not sure my hose would have reached if I were in my camper. Other than that, the campground is amazing. Bathhouses were extremely clean and maintained. Sites were spacious, lots of trees, even on the lakefront sites. Just beautiful.

This area is big for mountain biking also. There’s a parking lot with restrooms and I can almost guarantee it will be full of MTB riders. So much to do here all year round.

Primitive Awesomness

Jake Best was a campground I had been wanting to visit for a while and I was not disappointed. The campground is in the Citico creek wilderness, and is right on the river. The area is absolutely beautiful. The water is crystal clear, and the area is known for trout fishing and big game hunting, in fact the campground is regularly full of hunters. The campground is small, and has a vault toilet. The campground is first come first served, and is $8 per night.

The sites are spacious, and all looked mostly level. There is no water or electric hookups, it is primative. There is no cell service here, but you can get radio reception. If you are looking to escape civilization and get out in the woods, this place is perfect!

Quiet Side of Gatlinburg

Adventure Bound is a campground chain, and this one is located on the back side of Gatlinburg in the Smokies. It is easy to get to the campground without sitting in the horrendous traffic that Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge is notorious for. The location is between Greenbrier and Cosby campground, and that is a great area to visit in the Smokies.

The campground has so many things to do! They have a camp store with essentials and ice cream! They have rental golf carts to get around the property on. There’s an arcade, a pool, an alpine slide, a fishing pond, playground, a “Gaga ball” pit (I had to google what is was), and much more! Plus there is a creek that runs through the property and many sites are on it. Great place for bike riding too.

The campground is very large, and was full when we were there, but it was quiet at night with the sounds of rushing water and crickets. This is a really fun place to stay, especially for families!

Perfect Getaway!

Glampknox is located in Knoxville, close to downtown and The Smoky Mountains. The area is rural and beautiful, and the views from the site are wonderful, and the location is very convenient!

The property has a beautiful cabin that is also available to rent, as well as a wedding/event barn venue. There are horses on the property too. It is some of the most picturesque property you’ll find!

The site has a really nice tent cabin, with a covered porch, rocking chairs, and a wood burning stove. The tent has two twin beds, and they were super comfy. It has battery powered lanterns inside for light.

The site does have restrooms and an outdoor shower, both of which are just a short walk down to the barn. There is a large fire pit in front of the tent, and plenty of space for extra tents and great trees for hammocks. There is also a hiking trail around the property. The host also had firewood stacked for us at the tent.

Highly recommend GlampKnox for the perfect getaway!

Great Camping Coming Soon!

I stumbled upon this gem and can not wait until it opens! It looked to be close when I was there in October, but I'm sure the hurricanes that passed through delayed progress. Premium lake front spots, lake access, boat dock and slips, a restaurant and bar, bathhouses, etc. and the spots are all level concrete pads. The lake is pristine in this area and you can walk right to the "beach". Really excited for this place!

Best camping around!

South Toledo Bend State Park is located near Leesville on Toledo Bend lake. The lake is known for Bass Fishing and is listed as one of the best bass fishing lakes in the country. I’ve also read that the lake has great areas for scuba diving, if you are into that. The park is not far from Fort Polk, and offers nice opportunities for camping, hiking, boating, fishing, kayaking, etc. The campsites are mostly all heavily wooded, and spacious. Plenty of room between sites. They have several waterfront sites with hookups, but the I terror sites were nice also, and most have a lake view. The park has docks for fishing and boat launch, and a fish cleaning station. Theres a nice playground too. There’s also rental cabins that looked really nice. The park was still being cleaned up from hurricane Laura, but was still very nice. The best place to camp I’ve seen around this area!

First to Review
Not my cup of tea

JD’s RV park is located near Fort Polk in Leesville. The park is right on the road, and you will hear the traffic. The property is just a field and could use some improvements. The road needs gravel and trash was piled up. Like most rv parks, there’s long term residents here. If you needed to be nearby the base, you could stay here for a night, but this is not a spot for a nice weekend stay. Toledo Bend lake is not far away, and I saw some nice camping areas there. This spot could be a decent place for a stay over with some clean up and improvements.

Convenient to Fort Polk

Arlington RV park is located in Leesville, close to Fort Polk. The rv park is right off the road, and you can hear cars going by easily from anywhere in the rv park. This is a true rv park, but was fairly clean and maintained compared to others in the area. This is not a place to go if you are looking to have a nice relaxing camping experience, you would want to be on the Toledo bend lake for that, but would be sufficient if you have a camper and needed to be near the base, or in Leesville for some reason. Like several rv parks, Arlington has long term residents, with a few sites for people passing through.

Better than some in the area

Pelican Acres RV park is located near Fort Polk, and Toledo Bend Lake. The RV park is right off the road, and is a better choice than several of the rv parks in the area. The sites all look fairly level, and the property was well maintained. Like most rv parks in the area, this one has a number of long term residents, but this one was a little bigger and nicer than most I saw. If you were passing through the area, or needed to be near the base, this would be a good place to stop for a day or two, but if you’re looking for a nice relaxing camp spot, you’ll want to look closer to the lake.

Glamping at it’s finest!

Whooping Crane Farm is located In such a great spot, just outside Nashville, it is easy to get to, but convenient to everything. The camp spot is fantastic! Right on the Cumberland River, the spot is very secluded, and plenty of space for a group. 

 I would recommend bringing camp chairs, in case you want to sit in a shady spot, or by the water. The site has a picnic table, grill, and solar shower, however I would bring a tarp for privacy if you actually plan to use it, as the river is a busy place in the summer, and the shower is in clear view from the water. 

  There is a pond on the property, which the host, Ellen, allowed us to fish in. The River would be difficult to access, at least while we were there in late August, as there is a big drop off from the bank. I’m not sure if this is normal, or if the water lever was low. 

  The“loo” is a pop up tent with a bucket toilet in it. It was equipped with poop bags and toilet paper. The glamping tent was awesome. The bed was very comfortable. 

  We had some heavy rains overnight, and did have some dripping water from the center seam of the tent and had to scoot the bed over, but other than that, I slept like a baby. We love this spot so much, we plan to return later in the fall!

Small, but great location

Starpoint Marina campground is just a little sliver of space, right on Dale Hollow Lake, next to Starpoint Marina. The lake is absolutely beautiful, one of the few lakes I’ve ever been to without any docks on it, other than marinas. The water is a really pretty shade of turquoise and is very clear. The campground is very small, very little privacy, but you are right in the lake. There’s a small bathhouse, which I did not go in, as we have a camper. I would recommend this campground if you are have a boat, or a rental at the Marina. The Marina store has plenty of essentials, and ice cream! But if you need to run out, civilization is nearby. We stay here when we visit family who have a boat at this marina so it’s an easy choice, but there are a few other campgrounds on this lake that would be worth checking out if you weren’t tied to this one in particular

Great camping, lots to do!

Cumberland Mountain state park was a great place to visit. Located in. Crossville, not too far from I40, and really close to town so if you need to get anything, it’s an easy trip. The park was larger than I expected. I brought my bike and I was glad, as it made exploring the park easier. There’s several playground throughout, plus the lake has kayak, paddle boat, canoe, and paddle board rentals, so there’s a lot to do! There’s also a small aviary, and most of the birds were visible when I stopped by. My site was in loop 3, #86, and it was perfect! Plenty of space, and we didn’t feel like we were on top of each other. We had water and electric, but no sewer hookups. I noticed the sites in loop 1 had sewer hookups, but loop 3 did not. They have really nice looking cabins for rent also. The section for cabins is near the lake. They had multiple sizes too. The campground was full, but surprisingly quiet, except for the cicadas at night! Very peaceful. We really enjoyed our time at Cumberland mountain, and will definitely return!

Long term campers

Mountain cove marina and campground is located near Douglas Dam. The marina looked pretty nice, but the campground didn’t do it for me. There’s a lot of long term campers in this one. I did not see water access from the campground either, but it could have been in the back section that I didn’t scope out. I just didn’t see the appeal for this place, with so many other good options nearby.


Fontana Village Resort Campground is a small campground right next to Fontana Dam. You can’t enter the water here, but there is water access nearby. The drive to the area is cool, if you drive on Hwy 129, you’ll drive through the 11 mile section known as “The Dragon”. The iconic drive is a popular route for bikes and sport cars, due to the number of curves and switchbacks, and you can pick up souvenirs at local shops around. The campground was basically deserted when we were there on a Sunday evening. There are water and electric hookups at most sites. There’s not much privacy between sites, it’s pretty much wide open, with only a few trees scattered throughout the campground. I expected to have more trees in the North Carolina Mountains. I went in the restrooms, they were awful. I can’t imagine showering in that place. I chose to just use nature’s facilities. I was overall disappointed in this campground, as the area is so pretty, I expected better.

Like the Smokies, without the crowds

Big South Fork NRRA is definitely one of my favorite places in Tennessee. It stretches into Kentucky’s too. So much to do and see, and the hiking and camping is equal to the Smokies in my opinion, except there’s no crowds, no traffic, not many people! It’s great! There’s a few campgrounds in BSF, like Bandy Creek and Station Camp,and they are excellent spots, but the backcountry is where it’s at n the BSF! I have found so many excellent camp sites along the river and in the forest, and I’ve always been able to find one with plenty of privacy on any given weekend. There’s lots of hiking, 4-wheeling, fishing, swimming, mountain biking, horse riding, kayaking, rock climbing, etc here. The possibilities are endless! The sounds at night are so peaceful and relaxing, and the lightning bugs put on quite a show in the summer! I tried to make a video, I don’t think you can see them, but you can hear the woods at night!

Beauty on The Blue Ridge Parkway

Bear Den Family Campground is a great place to camp right off The Blue Ridge Parkway. The drive is so scenic, offering arguably some of the best mountain views of the smokies. The surrounding area is just beautiful, lots of hiking opportunities, or just sightseeing. We found a winery nearby, Linville Falls Winery, and it was amazing. We also visited a town called Little Switzerland, and it was so neat! The campground was very clean and well maintained, and is pretty large, with amazing tent sites, as well as rv sites. There’s a small lake for fishing (posted-no license required), and also has a roped off swimming area. There’s a camp store, however it was closed due to COVID-19, but we were able to grab some firewood and ice and they just charged my card. I also saw a few playgrounds, a basketball court, and an event shelter. The tent loop was very impressive, the sites were spacious and secluded, with lots of trees between, and mostly all would be good for a rooftop tent, or hammock camping. The hookup sites were nice, most I saw looked mostly level. Bear Den is a great place, we look forward to returning!

Sharps Station Backcountry Site

Big Ridge State Park has two options for camping, the campground with hookups and bathroom facilities, or three backcountry sites. So this review is for the backcountry. There are three choices of sites in then backcountry, and we stayed at Sharps Station Site. First of all, this was a beast of a hike, both in and out. I plan to never do it again! It is extremely strenuous, with some serious elevation changes, very steep terrain, and overgrown brushy trails that will leave your arms and legs scratched up. Not to mention, the sites are so confusing! The trail maps don’t have the sites clearly marked, and either the booking system, or the signage is incorrect, making is difficult to figure out how to get to your site. For example, when I booked Sharps Station site, it shows it as being #3, but on the signs in the park, the Sharps station site is listed as campsite #2, and the dark hollow sites are #1 and #3. Another issue with the maps, is that it shows the Sharps station site as being on the water, and that is not the case. The site is above the water, on a ridge, so you have to hike another .20 miles down and back up to get your water. So here’s how you get to Sharps Station Site- park at the grist mill, walk right for approx. .2 to the big valley trailhead, follow big valley trail to Indian rock trail, it’s a loop, so you can go either way, we went counterclockwise, and had to go down the super steep terrain. If you go clockwise, you will come to the Sharps station trail before you get to the site, and you can decide if you want to camp down on the water, or hike up .2 to the site. That being said, if you still choose to make the grueling hike to camp at Sharps station site, do yourself a favor and hit the Sharps station trail and camp on the water. Plenty of spots on that short trail. I gave this site only two stars because I feel like there are plenty of other areas you can find backcountry sites that are as good or better with a whole lot less effort to get to. However, we did not see anyone once we got on the Indian rock trail, so you will be all alone out there, and that is nice. And the hike in and out might be better in the early spring or later in fall when it’s not so overgrown with blackberries and such. I don’t believe I’ll hike this place ever again, I may put in my kayak and paddle over to the site, but that hike is no joke!