Rv Camping Usace/coeus Army Corps Of Engineers Campgrounds
USACE United States Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds offer great RV camping opportunities centered around water recreation. With thousands of recreation areas at over 450 lakes and waterways, USACE provides fishing, boating, hiking, and of course camping opportunities that anyone can enjoy. USACE is probably better known around the RV community as COE.
The USA RV Camping Map on our home page has links to each individual states USACE/COE information page. Not every state has usace/COE RV camping facilities.
Army Corp Of Engineers Campground Reservations
Campground reservations, if offered, are strongly recommended! Not all campgrounds offer reservations, but if they do and you dont reserve your site, there is a good chance no campsite will be available when you arrive. COE campground reservations are made through recreation.gov.
Campsite reservations are usually released on a 6 or 12 month rolling basis. Campgrounds are open for different lengths, depending on the location. I have seen campgrounds open for only 3 months to those open year round.
You can reserve specific sites. The campground maps, site descriptions, and photos make this easy and a huge plus. Premium sites in the campgrounds, like those that are waterfront and larger, often are reserved first.
Tip: Reserve early! Popular campgrounds can book up months in advance.
Corp Of Engineers Campground Fees
Once of the great things about these campgrounds is the reasonable campsite fees. Individual campsites range from $18.00 $56.00 with the average being $22.00 $35.00. Full hook up sites with sewer are usually the ones that cost more. Group campsites are also available and are more than individual sites.
I have even found primitive tent sites that are FREE! Some of these sites may only be accessed by hiking or boating in, but still have designated tent pads, picnic tables, lantern hooks, fire rings, and pit toilets.
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Camping With The Corps: Clean Orderly Nicely Landscaped
W.P. Franklin Lock on the Okeechobee Waterway
This may come as a surprise, but the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages more recreation areas than any other federal agency, including more than 600 campgrounds.
There are three Corps campgrounds in Florida along the Okeechobee Waterway. Three more straddle the state line on Lake Seminole. Even though these campgrounds are technically in Georgia, Ive included them in this roundup.
50% discounts on camping fees are available to holders of the America the Beautiful Senior Pass, America the Beautiful Access Pass, Golden Age and Golden Access Passports at all Corps of Engineers campgrounds.
St Lucie South Campground
My most memorable kayaking experience took place at St. Lucie South. My wife and I camped there in our RV and launched our kayaks into St. Lucie River from the boat ramp above the locks.
Across from the boat launch, there is an inviting cove to explore. As I leisurely paddled out of the cove, my sit-on-top kayak rose out of the water! I didnt have time to lose my balance, as I slid forward into the water, landing upright. What the heck was that? !#*!!
Manatee! shouted a nearby fisherman. Great form!
Ill never forget the sensation of the unexpected lift.
The campground itself rises above the river on a levee adjacent to the St. Lucie Lock. Plain vanilla and small, nothing fancy, but clean and well-maintained, as you might expect from an Army facility.
There are 8 boat sites and 9 RV sites with 20-/30-/50-amp electric and water hookups for $30 per night. Three tent sites have water but no electric for $25/night.
The park has a fishing pier, dump station, restrooms with showers, a laundry, boat ramp and playground. Pets OK.
Getting there: From I-95, take Exit 101 and follow State Road 76 west for a half-mile to Locks Road. Turn right onto Locks Road and follow signs into the campground.
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Army Corp Of Engineers Campgrounds: Camping For Lake Lovers
Do you like camping near the water? If so, you need to add Army Corp of Engineer campgrounds to your camping trip plans. You may have already stayed at one and not even realized the campground was managed by the Army Corp of Engineers.
People that I know that have camped at them often just refer to them by the name of the lake they are at or the individual campground surrounding that lake.
Whether you are a tent or RV camper, there is sure to be a site for you. The Army Corp of Engineers manage more than 400 lake and river projects in 43 states consisting of more than 92,000 campsites. With 90% of these recreation areas located within 50 miles of a major metropolitan area it is no wonder they are popular .
Even though it has often said that it is hard to find information about the Army Corp of Engineers campgrounds, I think it is just knowing where to look! Actually several sources exists about COE campgrounds.
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Rv Camping At Usace/coe Campgrounds
USACE/COE campground facilities are well maintained. Some campgrounds have full RV hookups, while others only have designated sites with picnic tables and fire rings. Showers are usually available as well as trash and water. Many campgrounds are dust free with asphalt roads and RV camping sites. Outdoor recreation opportunities include model airplane flying, bird watching, fishing, boating, geocaching, and hiking. Group campgrounds are often available for reservation. While not the easiest campgrounds to find information about at times, USACE/COE facilities are great locations for RV camping.
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How To Find Corp Of Engineers Campgrounds
The first place to begin searching is on the Corp of Engineers website. You can select a state, lake, or activity from the drop down boxes at the top of the page or just use the handy, clickable US map. Click the state you want to camp in and another page will open with a state map showing available camping options. On this page you can select a specific lake and activities you are looking for. Each lake has its own page with recreation area info, trail maps, lake maps, and links to lake websites and reservations.
Corp Lakes on the Go is also an app for your phone. You can find the link for it on corplakes.us.
Not all campgrounds and facilities at these lakes are managed by the Corp of Engineers. Partnerships exist with state, city, and county parks. Commercial campgrounds, resorts, and marinas are found at some of the lakes. Although they are located at Corp of Engineer lakes, they are not operated by the Corp of Engineers.
The second place to look is the recreation.gov website. Recreation.gov is the reservation home to all the federal operated recreation areas like National Parks and Army Corp of Engineers.
Campground information, reservations, reviews, photos, and a campground map showing campsites can be found.
I personally like to look at both websites. I love researching outdoor activities and destinations, so I think it is fun to pursue any available info on the campgrounds
Pecan Point Park Navarro Mills Lake Texas
This COE campground welcomes you to the Fort Worth District in Central Texas. It is about 20 miles west of Corsicana and 35 miles east of Waco, Texas. They work on flood control and water supply to local cities, so this opens some great fishing spots.
Pecan Point Park is located on the north shore of Navarro Mills Lake and offers 35 campsites, 5 of which include water and electric hookups. Fishermen come for all over for the crappie, but the lake also has largemouth bass, channel cat, and yellow cat that are very popular. Try catches around the dam when the water is being released.
Great size lake area for all kinds of fishing around the dam area too
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Brooken Cove Recreation Area Lake Eufaula Oklahoma
Unlike other butterflies that can overwinter as larvae, pupae, or even as adults in some species, monarchs cannot survive the cold winters of northern climates, so they head south for the winter. Some fly as far as 3,000 miles to reach their winter home! They are also the only butterfly to make two-way migrations.
On the shores of Eufaula Lake, Brooken Cove Recreation Area is a great COE campground to visit and watch the migration of the monarch butterflies. Monarchs migrate through Oklahoma in spring and fall and reproduce in the state during these two time periods.
Next time you are looking for the best Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds, ask yourself this question: which COE campground has a cool feature that I like to do? You might be surprised at what some of these campgrounds have to offer!
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History Of The Us Army Corp Of Engineers
George Washington appointed the first Engineers on June 16, 1775, during the American revolution, and engineers have served in every war since that appointment. In 1908 the branch of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was established. During that same period, West Point Military Academy was created, and for many years it was the only engineering school in the country. The appointed superintendent was an engineer for many years.
The Revolutionary war was not the only war in which they made an appearance. They have appeared in every war since. The USACE was on the beaches of Normandy! Operating under heavy enemy fire, they cleared lanes for landing craft by destroying the mine-bearing steel structures that the Germans had implanted in the intertidal zone and bulldozed roads up the narrow draws through the cliffs lining the beaches. So we salute the COE!
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers helped to make our country what it is today. Some of their missions included building coastal fortifications, surveying roads and canals, and exploring and mapping the western frontier. These engineers worked tirelessly to create our countries infrastructure.
Today, the USACE works all over the world. At home, they are the lead federal flood control agency, a primary provider of hydroelectric energy, leading environmental preservation and restoration agency. They also regulate activities in the nations wetlands and maintains over 700 waterways and dams.
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Parks Managed By Us Army Corps Of Engineers
For parks managed by other agencies, please see the web page on Leased Parks.
Select a link below to vew info on a parks and facilities manged by USACE.
General Information about Camping Park Gate Hours
ALL Camping Park Gates Close at 10pm Friday and Saturday. During Holiday weekends the parks close at 10pm on Sunday too.
Monday through Thrusday the gates close at 9pm.
No entry without a valid reservation. All camping parks are on the Recreation.gov reservation website.
Campers must be checked-in prior to gate closing.
There are no afterhours check-ins. No Exceptions. If you are late, you will have to wait until the following day when the gate opens in the morning to access your site if you have not checked in on time.
We do NOT have public access to the parks after gate closing. This is for the privacy and protection of the guests in the parks.
There are NO access code, key pad/lock, or late night check-ins once the gate house closes.
Anyone attempting to force the gates open, or enter the park illegally after gate closing time can potentially be sent away, lose any reservation they might have already, and be giving a federal citation and fine.
If you are a guest that is already checked in and choose to leave the park, but come back after gate closing, you will have to walk to your site from the gate, and then pick up your car in the morning.
NOTES TO THE PUBLIC:
How To Find Coe Campgrounds
Watsadler Campground on Hartwell Lake, Georgia. Image: COE
Youll need to dig to get info about COE RV campsites, but the rewards are worth the effort. We are retired, and have the senior pass card. We normally pay anywhere from $6-$15 per night, usually around $10-12, chindog says.
Kick off your RV trip planning research by doing the following:
Choose your Army Corps of Engineers District. Click on any of the seven North American districts to choose your destination. Then select the green Parks and Recreation icon on the right side of your page for details about public campgrounds managed by the COE.
Go to Recreation.gov, which features the largest inventory of federal land in America. You can search several ways including state names, zip codes, and facility. Youll find a comprehensive list of COE RV campground features like natural features, recreation opportunities, and campground details. Most COE RV campgrounds listed at Recreation.gov also feature great photos to give you a better feel for the location.
Purchase the book Camping With the Corps of Engineers: The Complete Guide to Campgrounds Built and Operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers by Don Wright. Billing itself as the complete guide to campgrounds built and operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, this Amazon Kindle book has all the details about COE RV campsites around the U.S. Youll find complete descriptions of facilities, amenities and directions to each campground.
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Rv Camping Reservations At Usace/coe Campgrounds
Many USACE/COE managed lake campgrounds accept RV camping reservations. You can make campground reservations at ReserveAmerica.com. You will need camping reservations if you are visiting popular lake recreation areas, and holiday weekends usually find these facilities at capacity too. Accurate information is provided about facilities available.
How To Find Corps Of Engineers Campgrounds
If you enjoy spacious, beautiful campsites with water views and amenities for a budget price, the Army Corps of Engineers parks and campgrounds are right up your alley.
While a little more challenging to find and figure out, the parks are generally extremely well kept and spacious, while also being closer to civilization, allowing for quick escapes to nature.
Make use of your public lands, try out an Army Corps of Engineer campground!
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Free Camping In Florida The Ultimate Guide
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is a large federal provider of outdoor recreation with more than 400 lake and river projects in 43 states! Their campgrounds are extremely popular with campers. Unfortunately, there are only 3 recreation areas in Florida.
In this article, I cover the Army Corps of Engineers camping in Florida. Please note USACE camping is NOT FREE. In fact, it is NOT CHEAP either with sites costing $30 and more for electricity and water. But as stated above these campgrounds are beautiful and much loved by campers nationwide. For this reason, I decided to include them in this camping series.
What Are Corps Of Engineer Campgrounds
National parks are epic bucket list camping dreams, and state parks are closer alternatives.
But did you know theres another type of government camping option?
Army Corps of Engineers parks are the hidden gem of camping. They often have great natural attractions for a low price, many times without the scheduling hassle of popular state parks.
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Corps Parks At Sam Rayburn Reservoir
For Park specific information, Click on a Link below, or scroll down. Click on any Photo to see a larger version.
General Information common to all Parks Each campsite is allowed 2 vehicles plus the sleeping unit. An Extra Vehicle Fee of $5.00 per night will be charged for each vehicle over the limit of two vehicles per site.
Limit of 10 people per site Boat Ramp fee – no charge to registered campers or Annual Pass holders – $4 for non campers
Day Use Annual Pass – $40.00. Exempts holder from Boat Launch, Swim Beach and other day use fees such as fishing from the bank, playgrounds or trails. DOES NOT COVER EXTRA VEHICLE FEE TO VISIT CAMPERS.
America the Beautiful Senior, Access, Military and Every Kid in the Park are available. Please contact Sam Rayburn Project Office for details related to each pass and purchase locations.
American the Beautiful Senior and Access Passes entitle the cardholder to a 50% discount on the above fees
Senior Pass And Access Pass For Army Corp Of Engineers Campgrounds
If you are 62 or older, you can save money on campsite fees with the America the Beautiful Senior Pass. The senior pass can be purchased online and through the mail. You can also purchase them in person at these locations.
A lifetime pass is $80.00 plus a $10.00 processing fee. An annual pass is $20.00. This pass gives you free entrance to federal sites that charge day use fees. It may offer a 50% discount on camping fees.
If you are disabled, you can obtain an Access Pass for the $10.00 processing fee. This pass has the same benefits as the Senior Pass.
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