Campground at Gifford Pinchot State Park

Tom and I parked the RV at the campground at Gifford Pinchot State Park while I was attending the overshot weaving class at Red Stone Glen.  Previously Tom and I had stayed at Harrisburg East Campground.  It was a good location, especially when we had our big RV.  But they recently raised their rates so it was over $90 a night to stay there.  That’s starting to get pretty expensive for a campground.

Instead, Tom and I decided to stay at the campground at Gifford Pinchot State Park.  The campground has some full hook-up sites, but they were already booked when I tried to make reservations.  Instead, I booked an electric-only site.  We were going to be there for five nights and I figured we could use our tanks for those five nights and dump on our way out.  Staying at the campground was less than $30 per night.  And it was closer to my weaving class, which was an advantage.

Our campsite at Gifford Pinchot

We got to the campground Monday, late afternoon.  I was glad we knew our campsite because there weren’t any rangers around or anyone to check us in.  In fact, we only saw one ranger all week, when the maintenance ranger came to clean the restrooms.  There were, however, plenty of campground hosts and most of them looked like they had been there forever.  Fortunately, we didn’t really need a ranger or a campground host while we were there.

Before we went to our campsite, however, we needed to fill the fresh water tank.  We found the fill spot just inside the entrance.  But, even though we consider ourselves very experienced RVers, it took us a little while to figure out how to fill the fresh water tank.  We had not done that yet in our Leprechaun.  Tom finally found an explanation he could understand online and got it hooked up correctly.  While we were waiting for the fresh water tank to fill, we took the Prius off the tow dolly.

Once the tank was full we drove to our campsite, unhooked the tow dolly, and then Tom expertly backed into our site.  We had to put some leveling blocks under the front tires because the site sloped a bit, but Tom is really great at that also.  We stuck the tow dolly under the front of the RV and then parked the Prius in front of it.  Tom got the electric hooked up, we put out our slides, and we were in our home for the week.

The group camping area

The campground at Gifford Pinchot State Park is beautiful and huge.  There are 340 campsites in loops around the lake.  Many of the pads are paved but they are lots of different sizes.  A tent site will be next to a 40 ft RV site.  The roads are paved and easy to maneuver.   We were in Loop A which is the non-pet area.  We don’t have anything against pets, but we don’t have one right now and figured we would enjoy the quiet.

And the campground was very quiet.  We were there the first week of May and there were plenty of other campers.  But everyone was quiet and respectful of the other campers.  We couldn’t even hear any road noise.  The most noise was the birds in the morning and the spring peepers at night.

One of our favorite things about the campground at Gifford Pinchot State Park was all the hiking trails.  Every evening we were able to take a walk of any length.  Just walking around the campground was over two miles.  When we included some of the forested trails, we could take much longer hikes.  We always like checking out the ways that other people camp – there are so many ways to do it!

One view of Pinchot Reservoir

With the electric hook-up, we lived comfortably for the week.  I took showers in the RV but Tom chose to use the bathhouse.  I am willing to sacrifice time in the shower for the convenience of being in my own shower.  Tom prefers unlimited hot water.  The campground has lots of bathhouses and they were clean with plenty of hot water.  We still had about 1/3 of a tank of freshwater at the end of our stay, but the gray tank (shower and dishwater) was full.

We had a wonderful stay at the campground at Gifford Pinchot State Park.  It was convenient, inexpensive, and quiet.  We will definitely stay there the next time I decide to take a class at Red Stone Glen.