By Alicia Dziak
Bust out the tent and head for the hills! Camping season is here and there are so many great local places to enjoy one of summer’s most popular activities. Whether you like to rough it under the stars, or have an actual wall between you and the great outdoors, the region has something for everyone.
Head to Allegany State Park (ASP) for a hotbed of camping activities. ASP is New York’s largest state park, and boasts hundreds of camp sites and cabins on a variety of trails. There are even full-service cottages that include bathrooms for those who want to try camping but not quite ready to give up the comforts of home. While at the park, visitors can enjoy a full schedule of programs during the week, such as guided hikes and educational programs. Each week, an artist in residence is featured, performing throughout the week around the park, and don’t miss Sally Marsh’s Thursday night Hootenanny sing-along at the Quaker Amphitheater, an ASP tradition. Of course, there are plenty of opportunities for hiking, biking, fishing, boating and laying low by the beach, as ASP offers amazing lakes, scenery and 65,000 acres to explore. For more information, visit www.reserveamerica.com.
Check out Randolph’s Pope Haven Campground for an abundance of amenities and a fun-filled experience. Pope Haven features hiking trails, a heated swimming pool, frisbee golf, a game room with pool table, volleyball and basketball courts, a fishing pond and a new playground. The pet-friendly campground offers both primitive and full hookup sites, as well as cabin and on-site RV rentals. For more information, visit www.popehaven.com.
Aim High Outdoor Adventures in Leon has deluxe modern cabins located on 120 private acres. For more information, visit www.AimHighOutdoors.com
Arrowhead Campground, located off Route 16 in Delevan, is a family owned and operated campground offering 200 sites and two deluxe cabins. There are plenty of things to do – rent a paddle or rowboat, go swimming or fishing, and enjoy one of three hiking trails. There is a large recreation hall with video games, pool tables, and more, plus horseshoe pits, volleyball and four playgrounds. For more information, visit www.arrowheadcamping.com.
Elkdale RV Resort, in Salamanca, offers RV sites, as well as cabins and cottages. Guests can enjoy a picnic pavilion for group gatherings, along with volleyball, horseshoes and catch and release fishing on a private pond, to name a few of the many recreational activities on site. For more information, visit www.elkdalervresort.com.
Great View Cabins, located in Kill Buck near the heart of Allegany State Park, boast cabins with breathtaking mountain views that can be enjoyed from the fresh air of fully furnished porches. Each cabin comfortably sleeps up to five people and includes a fully furnished kitchenette and a full bathroom. For more information, visit www.GreatViewCabins.com.
Mystic Water Resort in Limestone offers log cabins situated beside a 20-acre lake, group accommodations, championship mini golf, paddle boats and fishing. For more information, visit www.MysticWaterResort.com.
Onoville Marina Park, located on the Allegheny Reservoir, offers camping in the largest inland marina in New York State, as well as views of the sparkling water and the lush green forested hills of the Allegheny Mountains. You can experience 91 miles of non-commercialized shoreline with secluded bays, as you take advantage of campsites accessible only by water. For more information, visit www.OnovilleMarina.org.
Head to Franklinville’s Shamrock Pines Campground, which is under new ownership this season. The campground offers large lakefront or wooded sites, fishing, hiking, a playground, a pool, horseshoes, a recreation hall and an arcade. For more information, visit www.shamrockpines.com.
The Woods at Bear Creek in Franklinville, offers “glamping”—glamorous camping in deluxe cabins or floored tents. Amenities include an Olympic-sized pool, a large lake for swimming and boating, and an on-site, full-service restaurant. For more information, visit thewoodsatbearcreek.com.
Whether you’re a camping newbie or a seasoned pro, there’s no shortage of places or ways to enjoy this family-focused activity in the Enchanted Mountains. Gather your gear, do your homework and start making some summertime memories!