When we head out for our trip South, we have a basic idea of where we are going and what parks we will stay in but it all depends on how many miles we do each day that determines where we will stay at night.
One of the problems we run into when we first leave Vermont is finding a campground that is still open. So many northern campgrounds close on the day after Columbus Day due to the slowdown of tourists as the weather turns cold, but also the risk of water pipes freezing. We usually stay at the Villages at Turning Point the first night out but this year they, and just about every campground within 50 miles of there were closed. We ended up stopping a bit sooner and staying at a KOA, Kampgrounds of America.
KOA campgrounds are either privately owned or owned by corporate headquarters. We don’t stay at many of them as their rates are usually higher than surrounding parks. They generally have added benefits but as we just stay for one night, we are looking for a place to sleep mostly. Therefore, the higher KOA rates seem overpriced to us. If we were there on a vacation and could take advantage of the amenities, it would be different.
Another thing, though we can be assured the rates will be up “there”, we can’t count on the quality of the park being consistent! The KOA is Herkimer, NY where we spent last night was a park we would be happy to stay on for a vacation. Even if you don’t camp, I’m happy to say you could stay in this park. They have several different types of accomodations.
The campground is across the street from the Herkimer Diamond Mines where you can dig your own diamonds, and is situated on a river where you can cool your toes or tub down the river along with the natural flow of the water. Herkimer, NY KOA rocks!!! Also, the Baseball Hall of Fame is about 20 miles away in Cooperstown which could be a draw for some families.
On the other end of the spectrum is the KOA we are in tonight (Wed.). DH was looking at the map when he realized we’d be only aboout 20 miles away from Niagara Falls so we made a swift decision to go to the Falls. Niagara Falls KOA is VERY close to the NF State Park so we are staying here two nights. This park looks nice at the front entrance but it is definitely an older park and there is nothing picturesque about these sites. The are set up two by two, meaning two campers share the utilities. One drives in north to south, the other south to north. This is an old campground where all the sites are the size they were originally and it is a tight squeeze to get in RVs the size people have today.
It’s raining and the sites are in standing water. 70% chance of rain while we visit Niagara Falls but we’re going anyway. There are indoor exhibits so we can go in and out of buildings as we need.
Another post about Niagara Falls in a few days, Readers. It all depends on WIFI.