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Camping at LEHIGH GORGE STATE PARK

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General Overview

Lehigh Gorge State Park, located in northeastern Pennsylvania, offers stunning vistas of the Lehigh Gorge with the Lehigh River running through it. The park encompasses approximately 4,548 acres and offers a variety of outdoor activities including hiking, biking, fishing, and whitewater rafting.

Camping Information

Camping Options: Lehigh Gorge State Park itself doesn't have camping facilities directly within the park. However, nearby state parks and private campgrounds offer camping options for visitors wishing to stay in the area. Hickory Run State Park, about a 20-minute drive to the north, has campsites that can accommodate tents and trailers.

Camping Reservations: For state park camping, it's recommended to make reservations in advance, especially during the peak season. Reservations can usually be made online through the park's reservation system or by calling the park office.

Campsite Amenities: Camping amenities at nearby state parks can include picnic tables, fire rings, restrooms, and hot showers. Luxury facilities such as full hookups and cabin rentals may be available at private campgrounds.

Camping Etiquette:

  • Quiet Hours: Typically enforced from 9 PM to 8 AM.
  • Alcohol Policy: Alcohol is commonly prohibited in Pennsylvania state parks.
  • Pets: May be allowed but usually must be kept on a leash and supervised. Be sure to clean up after them.
  • Fires: Only allowed in designated fire rings or grills. Never leave fires unattended and extinguish them completely before leaving.

Activities

  • Hiking: The park offers several miles of trails with varying levels of difficulty that offer beautiful views of the river and waterfalls.
  • Biking: The 26-mile Lehigh Gorge Trail follows the river and is suitable for bikers of various skill levels.
  • Fishing: The Lehigh River is popular for trout fishing. Pennsylvania fishing license requirements apply.
  • Whitewater Rafting: The park is known for excellent whitewater rafting and kayaking conditions, especially during water releases from the Francis E. Walter Dam.
  • Wildlife Watching: The park is a habitat for various wildlife, providing ample opportunities for nature enthusiasts to spot local species.

Seasons and Weather

Pennsylvania experiences all four seasons, and the weather in Lehigh Gorge State Park can change rapidly.

Spring - Milder temperatures, with the possibility of rain and the last touches of winter chill. Summer - Warm and often humid conditions prevail, perfect for enjoying the river. Fall - Crisp air and colorful foliage make this a beautiful time to visit. Winter - Cold and snow can limit access to certain parts of the park but offer a winter wonderland for those prepared for the conditions.

Safety Considerations

  • Weather: Be prepared for changing conditions, especially if you're participating in water activities.
  • Wildlife: Store food properly and maintain a distance from wildlife.
  • Terrain: Some trails can be rocky and challenging; appropriate footwear is recommended.
  • Emergency Situations: Have a means of communication in case of emergencies, and be aware that cell service may be unreliable in certain areas.

Contact Information

  • Park Office: It is always best to check the latest information with the park office before planning your trip. You can call the park office for the most current information and conditions.
  • Website: Visit the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) website for more details on state parks and camping.

Conclusion

While Lehigh Gorge State Park itself does not offer camping, the surrounding areas provide ample opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to camp and enjoy the natural beauty of the region. Planning ahead and being prepared for the dynamic environment will ensure a memorable and enjoyable visit.

Map of Campgrounds in LEHIGH GORGE STATE PARK
Campgrounds in LEHIGH GORGE STATE PARK
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