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Luzerne State Campground at Fourth Lake

892 Lake Ave, Lake Luzerne, NY 12846
Lake Luzerne, NY 12846

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1 reviews from our community

I have visited this campground the past two years and plan to go back this August with my 3 kids. The staff have always been accommodating for those who visit for the purpose of "camping". However, if you come just to use this place as a dumping ground, or just to party and to be obnoxious, then yes, staff will make your life hell and hopefully kick you out (as they should). Those who typically leave bad reviews about this camp ground usually complain about them not following the rules for some reason. The rules are simple really... don't annoy other campers. That means no noise after 10pm (sorry college kids, go party elsewhere), respect others around you, and just don't be a jerk. Is that really that hard? I guess it is for some. Anyways, about this campground... this is a state owned park, almost fully surrounding the 4th Lake of the Luzerne "chain of lakes". The sites are very spacious and are far enough away from each other that you won't hear your neighbor snoring (unlike other campsites). In fact, the only noise you have to worry about in the middle of the night are those snoring in your own tent/camper, with maybe the exception of those pesky hooting owls, truth be told I look forward to hearing them when I come, my own sense of peace and tranquility, so you go owls! This camp site is very basic, designed for nature lovers and those who actually want to camp. If you are looking for honky tonk activities like at those fake "resort style" camp sites offer, this is not the place for you. There is no laundry service, sewer trucks or the dreaded bouncy water slide thing-a-ma-bob (thank goodness). Here my kids are forced to enjoy nature, such as the lake, the woods, and each other, the way it was intended. There are no electric hookups, so bring your tent or screen sheet and sleep under the stars. Gas generators are allowed during certain hours but really? If you have a camper or RV, fine, but leave the electronic devices home, that's not what this place is about, nor should be. Cook over an open fire or bring a small gas grill. Don't expect to see too many stars though when sleeping, as this site is covered by thick woods, trees block the sky almost completely, giving you a true nature immersion experience. The Lake itself is pure and clean, no motorized boats allowed. You can rent canoes, row boats, or kayaks from the front office, or bring your own. A little known secret is that you can traverse a stream found on the south side of the lake (past the private beach) and come out into 3rd lake, and then proceed into 2nd lake. In theory you could keep going into 1st Lake (Lake Luzerne) and eventually (I suppose) the Hudson river, but it gets very narrow and weedy in areas, the smaller the boat the better. I never tried past 2nd lake. The site offers two beaches, one small beach on the campers side, although no life guard there, swim at your own risk. It's a good place to fish or launch your boat (if you bring your own). If you have smaller or more adventurous kids, use the lifeguarded side, a much bigger beach where it's roped off at about 4-5 feet depth. Bring bikes for the kids and yourself. Don't forget fishing poles!! A great fishing spot (besides the lake itself) is the north stream coming into 4th lake, there is even a place to park to get there. Shower and bathroom facilities are generally clean and well kept. After 10pm the park rangers will come by every hour making sure the noise ordinance is kept, and believe me, they will kick you out faster than a road runner if they feel you are disturbing the peace, and thank God for that. My kids shouldn't have too endure hearing drunken college kids blaring their music and other inappropriate x rated sounds (yes, I have experienced this before). Bottom line, if you want to give your family a true Adirondack nature experience, this camp site is the place. I realize there are other very good nature friendly camp sites deep in the Adirondacks, but this one is the closest to me (capital region NY). Nearby "nature" activities include Bear Slide, Hadley Mountain, and river tubing at tubbey tubes, among many others. Avoid Lake George villiage if you are only seeking a nature trip, unless the wife pulls you there for a break. Sometimes a complete nature immersion is overwhelming for some, lol. The only complaint I would give about this site is the distance you have to drive around the lake to get from you main campsite to the main beach, although it's only about 5 min, just wish the main beach was on the main campers side, but can't have it all I guess. I also wish there were sites that had a better lakeside view, but none really do (woods are just too thick). Because of the nature of fourth lake, which is like a "bowl", campsites near or directly on the water were just impossible to build (too steep). In some ways that gives this lake a very secluded feeling, which keeps in line with the whole nature immersion experience. Great site, highly recommended for campers and nature lovers.


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