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Old 07-02-2014, 09:50 PM   #1
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Confused about Corp of Eng. camping

So with the Corp of Eng. parks.. Can you just pull in anywhere and boondock? Also what about National forests? Is it the same with them?
Also is it scary being the all alone in a national forest pulled off somewhere by yourself? Just kinda seems odd to me. Maybe I'm just a chicken.
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Old 07-02-2014, 10:30 PM   #2
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The Army Corps operates camp sites at various Corps locations. Most that I have searched charge a fee. National Forests are under the US Dept of Agriculture and most also charge a fee. Facility List for Recreation.gov - US Army Corps of Engineers - Recreation.gov
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Old 07-02-2014, 11:06 PM   #3
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So with the Corp of Eng. parks.. Can you just pull in anywhere and boondock? Also what about National forests? Is it the same with them?
Also is it scary being the all alone in a national forest pulled off somewhere by yourself? Just kinda seems odd to me. Maybe I'm just a chicken.
There is a system for State parks and Fed parks for reservations for numbered camp sites that they charge for. Where did you get your impression it wasn't organized?
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Old 07-03-2014, 02:20 PM   #4
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All COE campgrounds have an entrance fee. If you are 62 or older you can purchase an "America the Beautiful" pass for $10 that gives you free entrance for the rest of your life. Google "America the Beautiful Pass" for information. With the pass you get a 50% discount on camp sites and various other discounts on other facilities. If you are active military you get in free also. Or, you can purchase an annual pass for $80. Most COE campgrounds have "walk up" sites. It is suggested though that you make a reservation at recreation.gov. There is no free ride!
The same goes for other US government camp sites. There will always be a fee, even at state parks.
There are no Corps of Engineer campgrounds in Louisiana, there are campgrounds at the National Parks and you can use the "American the Beautiful" pass at Louisiana state parks for free entrance and a 50% discount on camp sites.
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Old 07-03-2014, 03:01 PM   #5
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LA has pulled out of the "Reserve America" system. There is still the booking fee but now LA collects it for themselves/ourselves.

As for COE, we camp at Lake of the Pines COE just over the TX line from us. Have to reserve specific sites. We camp with "family of choice" who live in TX. They always make the reservations, so not sure how they go about it....which web site, etc.

Absotively gorgeous camp grounds with a beautiful HUGE lake.
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Old 07-03-2014, 03:48 PM   #6
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I camped at South Toledo Bend State Park in April and used the reservation service by Louisiana state parks. They honored my America the Beautiful pass and gave me 50% discount on the camp site.
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Old 07-03-2014, 04:00 PM   #7
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We prefer COE parks as they are all a outstanding value and seem to be consistent with the condition of the parks. Recreation.gov as others have said is the go to site for our travels.
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Old 07-03-2014, 04:33 PM   #8
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All COE campgrounds have an entrance fee. If you are 62 or older you can purchase an "America the Beautiful" pass for $10 that gives you free entrance for the rest of your life. Google "America the Beautiful Pass" for information. With the pass you get a 50% discount on camp sites and various other discounts on other facilities.
I'm not sure how this works. Apparently, not all COE campgrounds have entrance fees. We reserve sites at 3 different COE campgrounds and pay no entrance fee although we do pay 50% of site fees when we make our reservations through recreation.gov because we have the "America the Beautiful" Senior Access pass. When we have visitors (friends and relatives), they are not charged entrance fees... although people who use any level of numbered sites are charged site fees.

Oklahoma and Texas state parks we have used DO charge entrance fees, site fees, water fee, trash fees, oxygen fees, sunrise fees, bathroom fees, galaxy viewing fees, etc. I jest. A couple of these items are no-charge benefits!
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Old 07-03-2014, 04:45 PM   #9
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I'm not sure how this works. Apparently, not all COE campgrounds have entrance fees. We reserve sites at 3 different COE campgrounds and pay no entrance fee although we do pay 50% of site fees when we make our reservations through recreation.gov because we have the "America the Beautiful" Senior Access pass. When we have visitors (friends and relatives), they are not charged entrance fees... although people who use any level of numbered sites are charged site fees.

Oklahoma and Texas state parks we have used DO charge entrance fees, site fees, water fee, trash fees, oxygen fees, sunrise fees, bathroom fees, galaxy viewing fees, etc. I jest. A couple of these items are no-charge benefits!
The Virginia COE will charge guest 3.00 to get in to see you. With the card you get 50% off of fees. You get water and electric only. This year they went to all reservations except 1 park first come first served,10 spaces only for that.. State Parks are like 45.00 a night now with nothing. But no entrance fee's for disabled Vet's. COE much better then the state parks. They do not except any discount cards like the COE. This is in my area do not know if it is different in the Blue Ridge area on the western side of the state.
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Old 07-03-2014, 05:14 PM   #10
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It's funny that COE parks seem to be different state to state OR from one park to another. The OK state park we use does not give the "Senior Access" discount but they DO knock off $2 per night at a full service site. Guests can enter for free if there's no one at the gate house (that's usually Monday through Thursday but maybe NOT in the winter) but are charged (I think by the car) if the gate house is "personed" (usually Friday through Sunday).
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