While we have been up at Lakeside, we have been staying in East Harbor State Park. East Harbor State Park is a beautiful place that is surrounded by Lake Erie on three sides. It has lots of hiking trails, several playgrounds, a disc golf course, a nice campstore, two restaurants, a harbor, a mile-long beach (we think it is the nicest beach on Lake Erie), birding trails, and hiking trails of various lengths.
The East Harbor State Park campground is the largest of any Ohio State Park. It has over 700 sites and is one of the few State Parks that has full-hookups in the campground. Of course, you have to make your reservations six months ahead to get one of the 29 full-hookup sites. But it has plenty of electric only sites. During the week the campground had about 10% of the sites occupied. Last weekend, however, the campground was FULL – it was if a village had suddenly sprung up. Thursday there were 100 people here – Saturday there were 1500! I was given some good advice when we started living in an RV – most of the time you don’t need to make reservations, but make sure you ALWAYS have them for Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day.
The campsites are mostly close together and small. There aren’t many trees in this part of the campground, but the older part – with electricity only – has a lot more trees. The first time we stayed here they gave us a site with so many trees we couldn’t fit. This time we reserved a site after looking at it via satellite. Even though the sites are close together there are lots of campground hosts who enforce the rules gently and with a smile. People have been very respectful of privacy and even the dogs have been friendly to one another.
On our first day here we walked the Red Bird Trail which is mostly lakeshore. None of the campsites are on Lake Erie which cuts down on the wind and keeps people from fighting over lakeviews. The Red Bird Trail is separated from the campground by a wall of green, making it feel lush and private. There are also Glacial Grooves (not just on Kelley’s Island!) and an historic cemetery.
We have enjoyed our time at East Harbor and will certainly be staying here again.