Trip report - Gamble Rogers State Recreation Area, Flagler Beach, Florida
Gamble Rogers SRA at Flagler Beach is a long-time favorite for a lot of campers. Sites are typically reserved 11 months in advance. That's as early as is allowed on ReserveAmerica.
The state just expanded the camping facilities on the river side of the park. The new campground is only one week old. Because of that you can get reservations for camping this week. That's why we were there, and is what this report describes.
The beach is a 1/4 mile walk and across US1. It's not outside your door as at the original campground but is closer than a rental cottage would be. Also, if you have a boat, you're closer to the Intracoastal Waterway boat ramp and have plenty of room to park the boat.
They've planted palm trees and pine trees but at this point they're just sticks. The whole place is hot, with almost no shade. Our site (40) was probably one of the worst in that regard but it wasn't obvious until the next day when we were baking in the sun. The awning faced NNE, the result is minimal shade under our awning in the morning and later afternoon. They only time we got shade was between ~11 AM and 2 PM.
All driveway and trailer parking areas are packed oiled gravel and are smooth and flat. No leveling blocks needed. It's not quite solid asphalt, but close. The picnic bench area is fine crushed granite gravel. You need something on your feet to walk around, anywhere. The rest of the campground is the result of dredging operations in the late 19th century. Nothing grows in it which is why they built the campground there.
Unlike the beachside camp which has parking problems, all sites are easily accessible from the main loop. It's easy to back in and there's a lot of space around each one.
Five sites have sewer connections but be aware they're solid concrete from edge to edge. Two or three of those are reserved for handicapped plates while others are unrestricted. All are very exposed to the sun.
Site 63 is the best in the place. It's on the river side on the loop, backed up to a line of trees. Your awning faces approximately South, giving you shade from the morning and early afternoon sun. The trees provide maximum shade from the west in the afternoon. 64, 65 and 67 are nearby and have almost as much shade.
Sites 37, 38, 41, 45, and 47 are oriented so your awning faces approximately East. You'll have maximum protection from your awning in the hottest part of the day.
All others have varying degrees of sun exposure, all more than the others listed. The one pull-through site I saw is facing due west. You might as well be under a magnifying glass.
Chris Cowles, Gainesville, FL
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