I am looking for a good place to spend my birthday weekend. A place where I could camp two nights and kayak with my wife. We have our own gear, and I am an experienced backpacker with good value of leave no trace. I live in NJ and love the Pine barens, Any help would be great!
How about the eastern shore of Md/Va?
Now or later?
When’s your birthday? Venues for winter camping are more limited than when it warms up. In the summer, you can find good spots within a few hours in any direction (maybe not east). Deleware River? Pine Barrens and Assateague are two places that let you camp all year.
my spelling might be off
but outer banks - Ochrechocre island is a good choice and the spring rates appear reasonable. kayaking on the the inside away from the surf might be nice.
or any other of the NJ state parks, if you want to stay close to home.
If you enjoy the Pine Barrens there are couple of options…
- Bass River State Park offers year long tent camping as well as lean tos (4 wooden walls, platform floor, roof, windows, locking door, and wood stove). There is a lake in the park to paddle in, as well as easy access to other put ins in the Pines on the Oswego, Wading, etc. The park has hiking trails, and is close to Batsto Village for something to check out.
- Wharton State Forest
This area offers year round camping at both drive in or strictly paddle in sites. Some of the sites such as Godfrey Bridge and Bodine Field are both drive in/paddle in.
If you can hold off on your trip until after April 1st your options get much larger, many parks in NJ and PA don’t open for the camping season until April 1st.
Worthington State Park in NJ opens on April 1 for camping and is located in the Delaware Water Gap. The park offers camping right along the Delaware, public access to the putting into the river, and great hiking along the AT as well as loops trails that connect to the AT. There are paddle in only camping sites along the Delaware just above and just below the Gap as well.
An excellent park to visit in PA for camping and kayaking or canoeing is Promised Land State Park. They offer several large camping areas that accomodate both tents and trailers, as well as rustic cabins, and two lakes to paddle and fish on. There are also somewhere around 20 + miles of hiking trails and biking trails. Unfortunately my favorite campground there and the only all year campground there, Pickerel Point, is currently closed for a massive renovation project. Once it is complete it will be a great camping spot, and primarily is geared towards tent camping and offers water side sites.
Good luck planning your trip and let us know what you decide on!