Thursday, October 22, 2015

10/21 Corps of Engineering Campgrounds Compared to State Parks

I wanted to show the difference between some of the COE campgrounds I have stayed at compared to state parks.  Certainly, I don't mean to insinuate that state parks are bad, but the Corps really does do a better job of designing and maintaining their parks.

Here are some COE parks:

This first one is WP Franklin Lock & Dam in Florida.  Could have fished from my patio!

This is St. Lucie South Lock & Dam in Florida. Could have fished here, also.
This is Old Federal on Lake Lanier in Georgia.
This is not a COE campground, but it is federal, so same discount for seniors.  It is part of the Big Cypress National Preserve, next to the Everglades in Florida.  There are 26 electric sites around a pond with a couple of resident alligators and is right on Tamiami Trail, so you are in a wonderful birding area.

This is Cochiti Lake COE, west of Santa Fe, NM.  Not only does it have a fantastic view from every site, but also has excellent cell service for my internet.  I don't have a good photo of my campsite, but this gives you a general idea of the covered picnic tables and sites.  

Actually, this on the right was my campsite until the backhoe crew showed up to let me know they were tearing up the area next to it to fix a water leak.  I decided to move to a nearby empty site because they were getting very close to my vehicle.  Notice that the pavement is nice and smooth.
Here are some state parks.  I really liked this one--Trinidad Lake State Park in Colorado.  It was new and clean, but not done quite as well.  The reason why pavement is so important is dust.  If roadways are mostly dirt, every vehicle going past will send up a cloud of dust, and I don't like dust.

This is more typical of state parks--grass and a tony bit of gravel to park on. Dirt roads and worn-out picnic tables. This is in St. Andrews State Park in the Florida panhandle.

This is Silver Springs State Park campground.  Gravel camping pad, but mostly dirt. At least the roadway had good pavement.
This is Sebastian Inlet in Florida.  Better gravel than most campgrounds, but large spots and lots of privacy.  No view from this site, but an easy walk to the inlet and ocean beach.   
This is a recent campground in Massachusetts along the ocean. It was old and worn.  A problem was very bumpy roads and a narrow and crumbling camping pad.
This is one of my favorite campgrounds. Actually, it is a regional park belonging to Maricopa County in Phoenix.  I like this one because the sites are so spread apart and because they are nicely kept gravel. Notice that this one was raked before I pulled in. Can't beat the scenery in this one, either.

This is another nice park, Dead Horse Ranch State Park, in Cottonwood, Arizona.  The camping pads are asphalt and fairly well spread apart. The best part of this campground is the view of the valley below! 


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