Our first out of state camping experience starts with Hickory Run State Park in PA. Yes, it’s our first out of state camp spot. Most of our stays have consisted of either 1 or 2 nights depending on our schedules. My wife and I have 2 to 3 days of free time sometimes weekly or biweekly and we utilize that for going out and finding camping locations to take advantage of. We are still noobs when it comes to camping and we are gradually growing into it as each year passes and we love it!
We drove out to Hickory Run and the drive was great. Renee and I really do enjoy driving out to Pennsylvania as we often shop at Cabela’s in Hamburg, PA and sometimes drive off the main highways to explore the countryside roads, the smaller towns and covered bridges you find just about everywhere in PA. The drive to the park was no different and the backroads were hilly and scenic. First thing you’ll realize when going to the park is that GPS sometimes does not agree with the location you try to put into it. Google maps on most phones will work great in finding the entrance incase you run into that trouble, the main camping entrance is off RT 534.
The campground supplies a camp store with just about anything you could possibly need in it, they do have a loop dedicated for pet campers and typical pet rules apply. Bear (not so much) and Raccoon (sitting at table with you?) activity to be aware of. Although I didn’t see either, probably due to the high population of dogs in the vicinity. Heavily wooded area with 40+ miles of trails throughout the park. Activities galore with nearby streams, waterfalls, lake and boulder field!
One of the most elusive things that Renee wanted to see and took us a few hours to find, was a dam crossing that was unlike any you will find in the area within the confines of the park. We did finally find it after asking everyone where it might be (no one had a pinpoint as to where exactly it was) with no luck. The road was closed due to heavy rains the night before which of course made it that
much more difficult to find, but we did end up walking down and around to it. It’s a road that crosses this waterway and it’s beautiful! Definitely worth finding if you do go to the park. (Hint, it’s near Saylorsville Dam, just continue down the road past it.) Did I already mention the park is filled with things to do? Ok good.
The campsite we settled in was at the back of the loop drive. The lot consisted of a fire ring, 50/30/20 amp service, a picnic table and paved driveway with a roomy sized lot for our mosquito canopy. The website only shows 50 amp available, since I’m a noob I didn’t realize that all options were available so I picked up a dogbone electrical adapter just in case. Better to have and not need than to need and not have right? A short trail behind our site lead to the woods and a surprise water stream (babbling brook) about 50 yards out. The campsites are heavily wooded and all you hear are the birds. It was quiet and pleasant for the duration of our stay. The staff were friendly to us and most of the people we ran into were very nice. The first night of our stay we had thunderstorms all night, but that wasn’t a problem with the new Scamp and spent the evening hours finally catching up on Game of Thrones (I know, yes, we haven’t watched the whole season but managed to watch quite a few, not done yet!) and playing card games being extremely comfortable the whole time :-).
The next day was clear (or seemed to be until 3pm according to local weather) and we set out to explore the park some more. We drove out to find Hawk Falls and found the trail. (rt 534 just past overpass for 476) We walked down about halfway down the trail past the first bridge and all of a sudden a torrential downpour unleashed upon us! Thankfully I didn’t bring any expensive equipment because that would of just plain sucked. It was approx 10am and forecast still showed 3pm rain, so as you can imagine we walked back to the truck, completely soaked (might as well of jumped into the falls) and Dante wasn’t too happy either as we were all drenched. I’m such a pessimist and my wife is such a positive light in my life, insisted we continue to explore to find that one road that you can drive through the water. (the previously mentioned elusive dam), so we drove on and of course the downpour stopped once we were securely back into the vehicle. But that’s generally how it goes when you’re not prepared for it isn’t it?
Overall, a very unique area to visit and we enjoyed our 3 days at the park. Great campground to check out!
Be forewarned! – Sorry for the poor video production below, first video release w/the blog! 🙂
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