Raystown Lake Region offers cold-weather camping options
As October comes to a close, many seasonal businesses in the Raystown Lake Region, especially marinas and campgrounds, will follow suit and close down for the cold weather months.
However, the region still offers some fantastic campground options that REMAIN OPEN into November and beyond - for those willing to rough it overnight in chilly weather. For example:
- Greenwood Furnace State Park Campground has electric hookups for RVs as well as tent sites and accepts reservations through the night of Nov. 21.
- Penn Roosevelt State Park Campground is primitive with no hookups, but is open year-round. After mid-October, the campground moves to a first-come, first-served model. To get a campsite, simply show up, pick a site, grab an honor-system envelope and drop the appropriate payment in the slot.
- Putt’s Camp on the shore of Raystown Lake is managed by the Friends of Raystown Lake and is available year-round for organized groups only such as scouts, church groups or other non-profit clubs. The facility has a pavilion, tent sites and a few Adirondack shelters as well as a pit latrine. The road in is gated (key or combination provided with rental) and doubles as the southern end of the Terrace Mountain Trail, but has no winter maintenance. Putts Camp is accessible by boat from the Weaver Falls or Shy Beaver boat launches or by foot or gravel bicycle from the Terrace Mountain Trail.
- Raystown Lake Nancy's Boat-to-Shore Campground is exactly what it sounds like – a campground on Raystown Lake that you can only access by boat from James Creek, Aitch or Tatman Run boat launches. It is open for tenting year-round and has a pit latrine on site. Prior to Oct. 26, campers must make a reservation at recreation.gov to camp there. From Oct. 27, 2020, until March 31, 2021, camping at Nancy’s is free with no reservation required.
- Trough Creek State Park Campground stays open by reservation through Dec. 11. The campground offers electric hookups for RVs as well as tent sites and a pit latrine.
- Warrior Ridge Campground at Lincoln Caverns is open for primitive tent camping by reservation through November. The campground has port-a-johns on site.
Other year-round camping spots in the area include:
- Rothrock State Forest: Motorized camping is permitted at eight designated locations throughout the Rothrock State Forest. These sites provide for off-road parking, a campfire and a picnic table. A free permit is required to camp at a designated site. For information about campsite availability in Rothrock State Forest and to request a permit, call the district office at 814-643-2340.
- Rothrock State Forest backpack camping: Backpackers may camp overnight anywhere except in designated natural areas, within 200 feet of a forest road, within 25 feet of a trail, within 100 feet of a stream or any open water. These primitive backpack campers do not need a permit if they stay no more than one night at any campsite.
- Mapleton Riverside Memorial Park has designated primitive campsites accessible from Oriskany Road, the Juniata River Water Trail or the Standing Stone Trail. The sites are open year-round, though the composting latrines are only open seasonally. There is a donation box on the gear cages for the park’s maintenance fund.
- Mount Union Riverside Park has designated primitive campsites accessible from the north end of Division Street and the Juniata River Water Trail. The sites are open year-round, and there is a port-a-john in the park.
- There are also trail shelters available year-round (first-come-first-served) at spots along the Lower Trail, Mid-State Trail, Standing Stone Trail and Terrace Mountain Trail.