Little Pond Campground is a peaceful, picturesque national campground in the Catskill Forest Preserve. It has a not-so-small body of water, which is an excellent place to relax and enjoy nature in its entirety. This site is perfect for RV camping and is quite a sight to behold– it has aesthetically pleasing views and multiple amenities suitable for all ages. Many campers poke fun at its name, “Little Pond Campground,” because its literal size spans over 13 acres.
Roughly two and a half hours from New York City, Little Pond Campground provides a quick and easy escape from the bustling concrete jungles. If you’re coming from Adirondack Park, it should be a couple of hours southwest of that site. Most people choose this site as it is a quick escape, providing a relaxing and tranquil place for people who want to unwind and chill with nature.
This national camp started being constructed during the years 1965 to 1968. There were 67 picnic sites, a beachfront, and eight remote sites. In July 1985, a time capsule was buried to commemorate the Forest Preserve’s 100th anniversary.
This capsule contains the names of the people camping in the facility. This capsule was interred in the base of a stone monument in front of the supervisor’s office and is scheduled to be opened on the 200th anniversary of the National Forest Preserve.
Little Pond Campground: Helpful Reviews and Information
The Little Pond Campground is a popular national destination for people looking forward to a weekend of nature. It is pretty accessible from national highway I-87 and Route 28 west by car, or take the NY-30 N if you’re coming from Adirondack Park. You can enjoy many activities with your friends and family on any date of the year. Here are some fun things to do while at the camp and how to go there.
Directions to the venue
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- Coming from North:
- Go through NYS Thruway (I-87) to Kingston and Route 28 exit.
- Follow Route 28 west to Margaretville.
- Follow Margaretville navigation
- Coming from Margaretville:
- Go through Route 28 West – Route 30 South, go roughly 2.3 miles past the blinking traffic signals to “Reservoir road 500′ ahead,” and take the next left.
- Take a right onto Reservoir Road, keep driving for roughly 8.5 miles and make a left onto Big Pond Rd.
- The entrance is 6.5 miles from there on the right.
- Coming from Oneonta:
- Go through Route 28 to Andes Town, and there will be a blinking light as you pass through the road; turn right there and go to the Y in the road, making sure to bear left.
- Follow that road to the end, which should bring you to Rte. 30.
- Make a right and go over the reservoir bridge, then make a left.
- Push forward for another 1.7 miles and bear right onto Big Pond Rd.
- The entrance is 6.5 miles from there on the right.
- Coming from the South
- Take NYS Thruway, I-87 to Exit 16 (Harriman), and Route 17 West to Exit 96 in Livingston Manor.
- Keep right at the end of the ramp and go a quarter of a mile to an intersection and turn right onto Old Route 17.
- Follow it for a mile until you see a sign for King’s Catering House.
- Take the next right onto County Route 151 (Beaverkill Road).
- Follow Beaverkill road for approximately 7 miles to Lew Beach.
- Continue for roughly 4 miles and leave at the camp’s signage, onto Big Pond Rd.
- Go 1/8 of a mile, and the entrance should be on your left.
$22 per night (extra $5 for non-residents)
549 Little Pond Campground Road, Andes, NY 13731
42 02 09.73874N, 074 44 29.67284W
Click to view direction link
Activities to Enjoy
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As we mentioned, there are many fun-filled activities for you to do while camping at this venue. Here are a few things to enjoy with your family or friends. Do note that some of these activities may require special licenses or extra fees before the camp ranger allows you to take part in them.
Kayaking & Canoeing
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The little pond campground’s pond is not so little, as it spans over 13-acres of water surrounded by beautiful woodlands and trails, indeed a perfect area for canoeing and kayaking. Motorboats cannot sail through this site, giving enthusiasts a peaceful boating experience. Campers are allowed to bring their paddleboats, rowboats, kayaks, and canoes, and just in case you want to paddle away, in a spur of the moment kind of thing, you can easily rent from their vast selection as well.
Just in case you’re planning to rent a boat, some reviews online say that it is a bit on the expensive side, starting at a $15/day rental fee.
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Swimming is also allowed in the camp, and there is a beach portion where you can enjoy the camp’s crystal clear waters. Taking a dip into this body of water is also a unique experience; wading into the cool water should lift your spirits and help you release tension and stress. Most online reviews agree that taking a dip in the calm waters of this campground is something that everyone should experience at least once.
There are specific swimming spots where you can take a dip; this portion also includes a lot of shade, picnic tables, and nearby boat rentals.
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This campground is considered one of the best fishing sites available in the country; the renowned Beaverkill for its fly-fishing stream and the Pepacton Reservoir known for its record-breaking brown trout sizes smallmouth bass just waiting for you to hook them in. If you’re planning to fish in this area, we recommend dropping by the New York Board of Water Supply as special permits are required before you can fish in the reservoir.
Fishing licenses can no longer be purchased in the camp facilities but can be easily be purchased online or by their hotline at 1-866-933-2257. The license feeds over reak time; as soon as you complete the online transaction, they will provide a confirmation number to you if you’re doing it through their hotline. This confirmation number is a valid proof of your fishing or marine registry/license.
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This campground is located in the Touch-Me-Not Mountain valley, over a hundred miles south of Adirondack Park. Same with Adirondack Park, you can enjoy beautiful nature trails and easy trekking paths throughout the area. The trail can be found around the area, spanning over 33 miles of interconnected trails through Delaware’s woodlands. These trails are relatively flat and leisurely, making them an excellent choice for families who love traversing through nature.
Veteran enthusiasts can also stroll around the more adventurous path through the Touch-Me-Not Mountain and leads to beautiful views of the Catskill Mountains at the peak that stands at 2700 feet, indeed something that would entice both amateurs and veterans alike!
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This destination provides over 67 tent and trailer sites or parks where you and your family can enjoy picnicking. They have available picnic tables that come on a first come-first served basis, strategically positioned in spots where you can enjoy nature while partaking in a sumptuous meal with your family.
Junior Naturalist Program
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This destination also offers a Junior Naturalist program, which gives children ages 5-13 the opportunity to test their knowledge about the environment while learning more about New York’s environment. This activity can both be an enjoyable and knowledge-filled activity for your kids; all you have to do is contact the camp’s staff and inquire about the program. There are many activities in store, such as bingo games, reflection activities, and many more.
Completing the program awards you a unique patch that is the perfect memorabilia for the camping experience you and your family have enjoyed.
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Enjoy camping at over 67 readily available sites and eight remote ones that are both surrounded by lush greenery and trees. There are available fire pits in all sites where it is allowed to burn local firewood, don’t forget to bring your marshmallows to toast! Do note that all of the sites are subject to rules and regulations (found below), and everyone must abide by them for the peace and harmony of all visitors.
Little Pond Campground: RV Camping Opportunities and Additional Information
Essential Personal Items to Bring
Not everyone is an expert when it comes to outdoor adventures, and you might end up packing too light or too heavy for your campground journey to different campsites in New York. That is why you should consider purchasing these items before the date of your journey or at least check your inventory before going behind the wheel.
- Navigation Items – Items such as maps, compasses, GPS systems, and extra batteries are an essential part of your pack. These items allow you to navigate the dense woodland without fear of being lost. Smartphones can help you navigate; however, there are limitations in signal strength and GPS accuracy.
- Insulation or Rain Gear – You never know what the weather will be like; it could be a hot, humid morning when you wake up, but you will never know if it will be pouring rain in the afternoon. We recommend packing at least a waterproof hat or windproof jacket to help you brave the elements should it rain during your hike. Other items such as thermal undergarments and wool socks help you keep your temperature at comfortable levels when camping at low temperatures.
- Lights – These items are essential, especially for overnight hikes; you won’t be finding any streetlight to light your path, so better bring flashlights, headlamps, and even lanterns. We recommend bringing extra batteries just if you’re trekking for more extended periods, and this gives you peace of mind knowing that you won’t run out of light when out on a trail.
- First-Aid Supplies – Surely, one of the essential items in your pack is first-aid supplies. There are tons of pre-made kits available in your local markets, and you can even build one of your own. Some essentials include disinfectants, gauzes, cotton buds, and bandages; you may add essential medicine such as paracetamols, antihistamines, and maintenance pills.
- Emergency Items – Not to be confused with your first-aid supplies, emergency items are items that allow you to be able to signal someone from afar just in case you or one of your group members are in distress. These items include whistles, signal mirrors, pocket knives, reflective clothing, and duct tape.
- Fire Starters – During an outdoor excursion, fire starters are quick and easy to make fire. We know that the little boy scouts in you would want to rub two sticks together to make a fire pit, but why bother when you have matches, lighters, or flints readily available. When signaling for distress or rescue, these items are also another survival tool; think about the movie Castaway by Tom Hanks.
- Energy Boosters are essential, especially when hiking long distances; nutritional energy boosters such as high-protein bars allow you to traverse the trail without feeling weak or light-headed. Since you’re bringing many other items, we recommend gauging how long the hike would be and how much food you and your group mates might consume for that duration.
- Water – It is important to note that water is the best thing to bring during your hike, not soda or juice, and not beer! As tempting as it would be to bring flavored drinks, these items tend to dehydrate you even more than water, the park rangers recommend bringing at least 2 liters per person in your group, and it is always best to carry more than you think you will need.
- Insect and UV Protection – Since your hike will usually be traversing lands with a higher altitude than usual, the heat of the sun will be a bit stronger. We recommend bringing extra UV protection to retouch along the way, which protects you from the harmful UV rays that could cause sunburn and other skin ailments.
- We recommend bringing bug sprays, bug repellents, and protective nets, as they are an essential part of your backpack. Since you are traversing woodlands, swamps, and other insect-infested spots, there are many different insects that you don’t normally encounter in the city that could bite and irritate you for the duration of the journey.
- Shelters – For overnight trips, bringing tents, space blankets, and tarps are also essential items for you to bring. You wouldn’t want to sleep under the sky without anything to protect you from the elements. As fun as it would seem to build a tent out of leaves and branches, it is just a time saver if you would bring a pop-up tent so that you can enjoy your trip hassle-free.
Recreational Vehicle Essentials
Before traveling to your chosen destination, we recommend creating a checklist so that you can ensure that you’ve brought everything that you need. The following items that we’ve listed are essentials for traveling through New York. Some of these items are excellent investments wherever the road leads you.
GPS – if you’re traveling from out of state, the best item to equip your vehicle with is a GPS Navigation System. This equipment will serve as your navigation tool, which will guide you on which road will bring you to your destination safer and faster, plus it will allow you to discover places around your chosen destination. The best GPS also provides road warnings such as vertical clearance, speed limits, and alerts when crossing borders, an essential tool for every enthusiast.
Dehumidifier – the Catskills portion of New York has a relatively moderate climate but is usually humid and has temperatures ranging from 80°F-85°F (26-29°C) depending on the date of your visit. This weather can cause a bit of heat inside your vehicle so purchasing a dehumidifier is essential for a relaxing night’s sleep. This equipment keeps the inside of your vehicle free from humidity and keeps it at comfortable levels.
Door Locks – security is one of the most important things to consider when traveling to different states, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the site. Securing the best door locks should be more than enough to provide you peace of mind when you leave your trailer for outdoor activities. This equipment allows you to spend more time enjoying your activity rather than thinking if your vehicle is safe from burglars.
Battery Box – as an extra safety measure, purchasing a battery box for your vehicle’s battery is another excellent investment when traveling from one state to another. This protective cover keeps your battery secure while on the road and helps deter would-be thieves from taking your battery (if you have it set up outside your vehicle. Another item that would give you peace of mind while out enjoying nature.
Bike Rack – if you love cycling through nature when visiting different destinations, purchasing a bike rack for your trailer is necessary. Bike racks not only secure your bicycle in place while on the road but also allows you to lock it in place while camping, saving you time and providing extra space inside your vehicle. Bringing your bike to different destinations unlocks additional activities to enjoy, be it for health or athletic purposes.
Campground Rules and Regulation
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Quiet Hours – As with most campgrounds, quiet hours are enforced between 10 PM and 7 AM; this ensures that you and your fellow campers can equally enjoy the peace that this venue has to offer. Violators who fail to practice this rule may be evicted off-premises without a refund.
Campfires – There are specific spots where you can build your campfire; anyone is free to do so provided that the fire never be left unattended; this is to avoid any wildfire that could damage the trees and your belongings. When collecting firewood, only dead and down wood may be used for your campfire; using chainsaws, cutting down trees (dead or alive) is not permitted and are subject to penalties. Firewood is readily available in the camp’s indoor facility and local vendors; purchasing from in-state shops is encouraged to prevent any spread of invasive insects.
Fireworks and Firearms – the site does not allow anyone to bring any fireworks, and firearms are only allowed during fall and spring hunting seasons; however, they should not be fired or discharged within the campground.
Pets – This site is friendly for pets, though you would need to bring rabies vaccination certificates or pet cards (tagged with a current year or rabies certificate) complete with the date. Pet leashes should not be longer than six feet, and pets must have a companion at all times. Pets are not allowed inside facility structures, beaches or day-use sites, islands, Temple Knoll, Flirtation, and Waltonian Island campsites.
The campers are solely responsible for cleaning after their pets. Horses are also allowed at Luzerne and Bear Spring Mountain to bring the current negative Coggins certificate. Horses brought from out-of-state must have a 30-day health certificate; patrons need to bring these health papers with them at all times.
Everyone who enters the site must have a representative register and pay the appropriate fee; campers who are the chosen representative must be at least 18 years of age (you can bring your kids with you). Camping permits can be for a maximum of two weeks, and the fourteen-night limit rule is to ensure that new campers can enjoy their right to camp. The fourteen-night limit can be extended, depending on the availability of these camps’ sites.
Campers can check in anytime between 12:00 Noon until 9:00 PM on their date; campers must register for their site before 9 PM on their first date of the reservation; if they fail to do so, the site will be subject re-rental; all the fees are non-refundable. Checking out of your camp must be done at 11:00 AM on the date of camping permit expiration.
Swimming, Beaches, and Boating
There are supervised bathing sites in the lake that visitors can use as long as a lifeguard is on duty. There are times when lifeguards are unavailable; during this, these lake-side sites will be closed, and lake swimming is not allowed for everyone’s safety. Some campgrounds do not allow swimming, and it is best to ask first before taking a dip!
Alcoholic beverages are not allowed while swimming in the lake, bringing glass containers, inflatable devices, and beach balls. Diving gear or underwater swimming gear is not allowed in the lake. When boating in the lake, the rangers recommended that everyone onboard have an approved floatation device of their own, even if they’re an expert swimmer.
Plants, Animals and Aquatic Life
This site strictly prohibits feeding, attracting, or harassing wildlife; this protects the camper and the wildlife from being hurt or attacked. Just in case wildlife is acting strangely, it is best to contact the site’s staff to determine the best course of action. All plants, animals, fossils, or rocks must not be removed or disturbed.
If you’re planning on fishing on this site, you must secure a NY State Fishing License before the date of your visit to the site. The licenses are not available for purchase on these sites.
Little Pond Campground: An Environmental Haven
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All in all, this camp is a haven for nature, filled with lush woodlands, wild animals, and beautiful bodies of water, like lakes. If you love watching wildlife, you should keep an eye out for the following animals you might see in these lands.
Animals you might see:
- Bald Eagles
- Wild Turkeys