Looking for quiet car-camping spot within two hours drive of NYC
September 16, 2009 9:10 AM   Subscribe

Do you have a recommendation for a quiet car-camping spot within two hours drive of NYC for this weekend?

I'm looking to go car camping (i.e., no hiking in) with my girlfriend this weekend. We'll be traveling from NYC and will have a car. We'd like to keep our travel time to around two hours but will go beyond that for something spectacular. Features we're looking for:

- Private and quiet. This is our number one reason for wanting to go camping.
- Fire pit
- Foresty

posted by funkiwan to Travel & Transportation around New York, NY (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
high point state park new jersey
posted by nj_subgenius at 12:05 PM on September 16, 2009

First, here's a nice site that will show you most of the camping spots in the area.

I'm a big fan of the Catskill mountain range, and would recommend almost any in the area. I would suggest going to North South Lake right outside of Hunter Mtn. It's quiet, offers a bunch of hiking and biking plus amazing views and some killer waterfalls. Also, if you end up getting rained on, the village of Tannersville is 15minutes down the road and offers some nice cafes/restaurants to spend the afternoon. (check out Last Chance Cheese, it's worth it).

Have fun.
posted by wile e at 3:13 PM on September 17, 2009

If that's too far, also look around the New Paltz area. Also in the Catskills, but will be 30-45mins less driving and also offering a good amount of non-camping options if needed.
posted by wile e at 3:14 PM on September 17, 2009

Thanks for the answers. It's funny, I asked my Dad this morning where we used to go camping when I was a kid, and he said, "High Point, in NJ. It's the best." So I suppose nj_subgenius deserves some credit.

We ended up bailing on renting a car ($120/day!) and decided to camp via public transit instead. For anyone looking to get away from NYC, Malouf's Mountain is a pretty nice spot. It's located in Beacon, NY and they'll pick you up at the train station. It's a hike-in campground (anywhere from 30 minutes to 5 hours, depending on your interest) and they carry your gear to your campsite via ATV and will provide food and/or tent for an extra fee. All the sites are pretty isolated. Maybe it was the time of year (early October) or the rainy weather, but we couldn't see or hear anyone from our campsite. We had a platform site with a covered tarp, so the weather wasn't a factor.

While they do a great job of getting you set up, they're strangely a bit less helpful in getting you out. They ask that you cart your gear down to a common area when leaving, which is quite a hassle when your campsite is several hundred yards away. It was also puzzling, since they seemed to be making rounds on an ATV the previous day almost on the hour, and a gear pickup seems in line with the gear dropoff. They also apparently don't drop you off right at the train station but at a nearby restaurant. We packed heavy since we were under the impression that they do full pickup/dropoff, and the fact that they were less accomodating on the way out than on the way in was a bit disappointing.

Overall, I would recommend them, with the caveat that you pack light, or at least have decent backpacks for carrying your gear.
posted by funkiwan at 9:39 AM on October 5, 2009

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