Charlestown State Park: A Breath Of Fresh Air   

Nestled along the Ohio River, Charlestown State Park is a historical beauty formed from the realms of the Ice Age. What was once considered a shallow waterbed, is now a beautiful emblem of what nature has to offer. Over the years, development in the area has led to many changes and, of course, for the good one must say.

Charlestown State Park: A Breath Of Fresh Air

Seated on over 5,100 acres of lush green property, the Charlestown State Park is currently the third largest of its kind in Indiana. Its history is more than the ordinary as it once housed a portion of the Indiana Army Ammunition Plant. Interesting right? It boasts a lot of recreational features that are perfect for complimenting your vacation.

The breathtaking view overlooking the Fourteen Mile Creek provides a mesmerizing feeling like no other. It is among one of the oldest streams found in the state and forms a unique scenery as a perfect backdrop.

Along the lines of the river stands a monument with a rich history. Known as the Devil’s Backbone, this stone remain was once part of a fortress built by Welsh adventurers. Charlestown State Park Features

Visiting the amazing Charlestown State Park will grant you access to features that are not often seen elsewhere. Within the grounds of the park, you are able to access (not limited to):

  • Past time nature activities like boating, canoeing, camping, bird watching, cycling, field sports, fishing, and hiking are encouraged here. The seven trails are easily marked with range and level of difficulty.
  • You are close to other DNR properties like Clark State Forest, Deam Lake State Recreation Area, and Fall of the Ohio State Park. These all add bridle trails, hunting, mountain biking, picnicking, target ranges, an interpretive center, historic features, and wildlife watching.
  • Close range amenities:  You are steeped in nature, yet a quick drive from “civilization”. Within a 1-mile distance from the venue, you will find features that include but are not limited to a medical center, propane, boat, and vehicle fuel among others.

    Also, within a 10-mile radius, it includes amenities such as a hospital, souvenir stores, grocery, Church, meeting/conference venue, and others. We stopped at Schimpffs Candy and The Vintage Fire Museum – but you will hear more about those both soon!

Charlestown State Park Staff

The venue is also rich in amazing customer service and staff who is ready and willing to provide you with a rare experience. They will ensure you are satisfied with the services you receive from your reservation to your final minutes spent here…but make sure you print off all documents related to your reservation for your arrival.

We were originally greeted very differently than any other Indiana State Park by a slightly surly young man who reprimanded us for not having printed verification. This was a slight problem as we were there as travel writers and didn’t make our original reservation…he was also the first person to NOT hand us a map and show us where we needed to go to find our site.

Never fear, this park is very easy to navigate and we found it ourselves, easily. The lots are blacktopped so it is easy for RVs and easy to level out your pop-up camper.

Charlestown State Park: A Breath Of Fresh Air

There isn’t a nature site like the other parks, but they are working on it – in the main office you can see that they do have a room in process of being a great learning station, down to flash cards for local flora and fauna. You really need to check out their great hiking trails to see nature at it’s best.

Our bathroom report? Immaculate. This might be because we were in a full hookup area and surrounded by RVs. With only a handful of tents or pop-ups that means a lot less users for the park showers. It was seriously like being in the Taj Mahal of bathrooms and probably cleaner than our three bathrooms at home – eek!

Charlestown State Park: A Breath Of Fresh Air

If you want to experience what nature has to offer without feeling imposed on, here is an open and natural location for you. Where Mounds State Park had a herd of trash pandas, we saw a bounty of bunnies here.

Seriously, the rabbits are easy to view in the early morning and early evening. We even saw turtles crossing the road and stopped to assist them. Do still bring all garbage and food in at night – the hubster got a little lazy one night and we had a furry visitor.

There are raccoons here, just not in full force. The environs provide a rich atmosphere and habitat that suits the lifestyle of both plants and animals. You will definitely have an experience worth more than a thousand words.

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Recharge at Salamonie Lake State Campground

Time to get away from a world full of worries for a little while and have some fun for once. Do you know that going on a camping trip and participating in entertaining activities help uplift one’s spirit?

Most times, when feeling a little pressured at work, it’s time to embark on a camping or backpacking trip with the family. Getting unplugged and into nature is great to de-stress and honestly? It recharges me as a mom.

Salamonie Lake State Campground in Indiana is perfect for that. I know that not everyone is treated like a guest travel writer – we were greeted enthusiastically, escorted to our campsite, offered a full service water fill up for our camper and even delivered fire-wood. Perks of the visit that they didn’t need to do to impress us as they offer an amazing campground.

Recharge at Salamonie Lake State Campground

Salamonie Lake State Campground is a 12,000 acres outdoor property, full of different activities one can indulge in. It is a vast place that is capable of containing a large population of people.

With this substantial piece of property, you should be guessing they have a lot in store for you to enjoy as well as the necessary facilities, equipment, and amenities to make your stay as comfortable as possible.

Recharge at Salamonie Lake State Campground

We fell in love with the nature center. All three of us are suckers for animals and might have been known to even stop and help turtles cross the road. The nature viewing area was incredible. In your quiet space you can watch birds, 3 different kinds of squirrels, chipmunks and more indulge in the buffet of feeders.

I adored the black squirrels while Miss Sarah watched the little red. Who knew chipmunks could cram so many sunflower seeds in their cheeks before taking off?

The bird books on the table help you indentify the over 20 different species that we saw – down to hummingbirds. All that was missing was a little Disney music and some cleaning action.

Recharge at Salamonie Lake State Campground

The nature center has a lot more than just a viewing area – there is plenty to look around at and learn more about the area and wildlife. While I get kind of creeped out by live animals that have been stuffed, I appreciate  how they live on to help educate others about their size and looks.

You also get to see a vast 2,855 acres of lake for boating activities, swimming as well as fishing. It is an excellent place to start your adventure by having a long bath in the lake or indulging in fishing practices.

If you can’t fish, it is a unique way to learn how. There are so many activities you can get access to in this campground, some of which include horse riding, biking, hiking, hunting and so on. I wasn’t kidding when I said this place had a lot of things in store for you.

For those who love hunting for game, they have a 9,000 acre of land specifically partitioned to carry out hunting activities. I have never heard of that in a state park!

–> Check out our Crazy Camping Girl Etsy store – new items are added weekly!

Moving away from ordinary activities, they have the golf courses in the area available for the older generation who loves to play. They have up to five golf courses enough to contain all golf lovers present at the campground.

It might also provide an excellent opportunity to meet great minds and fellow golf lovers…the hubster likes to swing a few rounds, but Miss Sarah and I are more of the mini-golf variety.

Some of them include Etna Acres Golf Club, Lafontaine Golf Club, Norwood Golf Club, Arbor Trace Golf Club, and so on… Have littles? No worries – there are plenty of playgrounds for them too!

Recharge at Salamonie Lake State Campground

I have always mentioned the bathrooms – it is important to note that we were there for the 4th of July weekend – and the place was packed. There were ALWAYS people in the showers or bathroom and I honestly think it was just hard to keep up with the crowd.

The ladies’ room was passable, the hubster wouldn’t use the men’s. I like to think that it is because we ladies are a tad tidier? I just chalk it up to a busy weekend and something you have to expect if you camp over a holiday.

Personally, I was tickled to see how many people were taking advantage of a state park! It is a very family-friendly and affordable way to take a break from the everyday.

Recharge at Salamonie Lake State Campground

Going back to nature, they have a beautiful garden set up. Butterflies and birds are drawn to a section of glorious blooms and another area is dedicated to herbs.

You can see which were medicinal, aromatherapy candidates, and even for dying fabric back in the day. Local Boy Scouts created a bench to make the perfect resting spot for a visitor.

Here, you also get to see a few natural reserves and appreciate the incredible natural creations:

 Kokiwanee Nature Preserve

 Hathaway Preserve at Ross Run

 Hanging Rock National Natural Landmark

It is an excellent place for a family reunion, family picnic or gathering, and so on. Aside from the fun and entertainment, there are also places in this campground designated for learning.

You get to learn and expose your kids to a whole lot of history you haven’t been able to explain to them. We have the US Vice president’s museum where with the help of the guide, you will be able to establish some details about his history. You also get to see images and artworks having a connection with US history. Other historical sites include:

 Forks of the Wabash Historic Park

 James Dean Country

This really is an amazing place to park and play: park your camper or tent and play not only at Salamonie Lake State Campground, but in the surrounding area.

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Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

Sometimes the best way to hang out with kids is by embarking on a camping trip. Aside from the regular conventional visit to the amusement park each time they are on school break, a well-detailed camping trip, fully packed with fun and entertaining activities, might be a better alternative.

Mounds state campground can truly help you with this. Mounds State Campground can provide you a camping experience that you would never forget.

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

Check out the Educational Center!

The building and structure are said to possess about ten distinct earthworks with historical ties with the Indians. One of the earthworks found in this place- the largest one can be dated to 160BC.

According to thorough research carried out by talented archaeologists, it is believed that the mounds were initially utilized for religious get-togethers as well as ceremonies. Personally, we loved the nature watching area and the folly of the black squirrels competing for sunflower seeds and chill-axing as we played tic-tac-toe.

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

There are a lot of incredible hands-on activities and blind search boxes. We know that kids learn through play and it’s great to give them incredible things to play with. We even love how they have a stepped-up bench by the animal sections for the littles to get better viewing!

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

Getting to the basics:

Mounds is a tremendous campground that has everything, or almost everything, to make the family fun and entertainment complete — starting from the social amenities made available such as adequate water, toilet facility, to the bathrooms.

All campsites made available at Mounds are very nicely spaced, convenient, well-organized, and properly maintained. You back in on a blacktop surface which means people like us (with a pop-up camper) have an easier time staying level.

We make sure to always pack those dollar-store flip flops for the showers and were delighted at how clean they were! Trust me, not all campsites pass our test – and we have refused to shower before!

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

Critters? Yes, they have an abundance of Trash Pandas ( raccoons ) and make sure to educate everyone against leaving their garbage outside at night. These little fur-balls are like a well-oiled military machine with a leader barking commands. We woke up late one night and caught the show. Either keep your food in the camper, car, or tree- so you don’t end up hungry the next morning.

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

Mounds State Campground is a great place to go:

Fishing- Some people have never touched a fish line, talk less of catching a fish from the lake. Well, fishing is a very significant kind of activity useful for relaxing and cooling off.

Hiking- This is one way to exercise your muscles as well as clear your head. Bring along your hiking kits and get ready to experience a perfectly safe and secure hiking experience. You can even get to join a group of people to make it more fun and exciting. The trails are rated from easiest to the most challenging.

Swimming- You don’t need to do what you don’t want to do when you have a ton of alternatives to select from. Their aquatic facility is amazing from the diving board down to the splash pad. This is an additional $3 per person and the pool closes at 6:00 pm – rousting your out of it at 5:45.

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana

Cycling- This involves engaging yourself with other bikers or cyclers, probably early in the morning as a means of exercise. I love doing things that create a breeze as you go!

Canoeing- I am sure the majority of people have no idea what this means. It involves making use of an archaic kind of boat with paddles to move on water. It is also a kind of exciting sport. (Yes, I am being silly) Most people we saw had motorboats with them.

There are so many other activities you can indulge in while at Mounds State Park. Trust me, you can never get bored.

Chillax at Mounds State Campground in Indiana
Check out how family-friendly this nature center is – even steps for the littles to climb and get a better view of the critters like the racing snake – which can go about 8 miles an hour on land! Eek!

Mounds is easy to find:

It is situated a few miles east of Anderson, Indiana, and is clearly marked by signs. Just look for the rolling grassy knolls that are dotted with picnic tables and free-use grills. The local park rangers all have a welcoming smile and are beyond helpful. Maybe you will get lucky enough to see a trash panda!

–> Check out our Crazy Camping Girl Etsy store – new items are added weekly!

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Experience History and Nature at Wyalusing State Park

Wyalusing State Park overlooks the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers, the park is roughly 2,700 acres scattered with Indian burial grounds. It is one of the oldest parks in Wisconsin, the park offers bird watching, camping, hiking, and canoe rentals.

Wyalusing has over 14 miles of hiking trails spreading throughout Sand Cave, Mississippi Ridge, Turkey Hollow, and Sugar Maple Nature just to name a few.

Experience History and Nature at Wyalusing State Park

So Many Choices at Wyalusing State Park

Wyalusing State Park offers several different choices when it comes to camping for any outdoor adventure. Wyalusing has three different campgrounds to choose from, each with its own unique flare.

You and the family or group can choose from two family campgrounds, the Hugh Harper indoor camp, or an outdoor group camp. Wyalusing State Park can fulfill each need for campers while providing reassurance of safety.

Wisconsin Ridge and Homestead campgrounds boast 33 electrical campgrounds and a total of 109 campsites. Holding tank and dumping station or close by the campground for convenience and safety for the campers.

Wisconsin Ridge campsites offer hiking trails that have magnificent views and discoveries. No matter if you plan to stay for a weekend or extend the stay to a week, the laundromat is close by and is open 24 hours a day for campers’ convenience.

The outdoor group camp is made up of five different campsites that can accommodate up to 130 people, The outdoor group camp is located near the Wisconsin Ridge campsite, giving occupants the option to use the holding tank and dumping site too.

Hugh Harper indoor camping site is designed for organized groups making the space great for family reunions, weddings, scout group meetings, and school functions. The modern facility offers a commercial kitchen equipped with commercial dishwasher, utensils, and silverware for guests to prepare and enjoy meals together, the indoor camping site offers a recreational room, large meeting room, cafeteria, and dining area.

The sleeping arrangements for the Hugh Harper indoor campsite are four separate heated dormitories able to hold 108 guests. There are two bathrooms for each dormitory with showers, sinks, and flushable toilets. Between the lodge and dormitories, there is an amphitheater, a large fire ring, and large charcoal burning grill right outside the kitchen.

Common Eco-Safety at Wyalusing State Park

There is to be no outside firewood brought in for use at the campsites, firewood can be purchased at the concession stand. Outside firewood has the potential to bring diseases or pests that can harm the parks plant and tree life.

Pic-Perfect at Wyalusing State Park

Wisconsin State Parks have set up selfie stations for campers and visitors to brush up on their selfie skills. There are selfie stations located throughout the Wyalusing State Park set up to capture the most amazing views and for an unforgettable trip that you can share with your friends and have to keep for years to come. Use the hashtag from the selfie station to share your unique selfie with others that have used the selfie station.

Check out this hard to find Male Luna moth! They only live about 7 days and we were lucky to find him!

With the beauty of the Wyalusing State Park all around you, spend the night with nature and open your eyes to gorgeous once in a lifetime sunrise that is cast across the trees and rolling hills. You will find yourself close to Prairie du Chien and all that it has to offer too!

–> Check out our Crazy Camping Girl Etsy store – new items are added weekly!

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