What is this site all about?

The New York State campsite guide is a campsite photo project created by Dave McGrath for campers who enjoy camping in New York state. More specifically those who prefer a lakeside camping experience.

The aim of this project is to provide New York state campers with a resource for helping them to choose specific campsites at State and DEC campgrounds, mainly in upstate New York, that offer a true lakeside experience. It's main feature is the thousands of high resolution photos taken of each campsite at each of 78 (currently) New York State and DEC campgrounds. These include campgrounds in Adirondacks, the 1000 Islands / Lake Ontario region, the Finger Lake, Western NY, and Catskills/Taconic regions.

Multiple photos taken from different angles are provided of each campsite so campers can visually see how a particular campsite will or will not accommodate their camping equipment. For those with children, you can see what the water access and shoreline are like, as well as distance from the road. Cross site views provide for some sense of the privacy of a site as well.


Initially the concept of the campsite photo database was developed back in 2006 after Dave and Kate had camped many times at Fish Creek Pond Campground and started to take photos of each site at Fish Creek rather than writing notes and trying to rate sites. A few years later Rollins Pond was added. The Fish Creek and Rollins database are quite elaborate and go beyond just photos and basic guide. They also include individual campsite details and ratings. A complete Campers Toolkit provides the ultimate resource for campers at Fish Creek and Rollins. See fishcreekpond.com for more info.

In 2011 Dave expanded his Parkware Campground Manager software to simplify the process of managing and coding the thousands of photos, and began adding additional campgrounds to the database.

In 2011 Watkins Glen, Letchworth and Eighth Lake campgrounds were added.

In 2012 Buck Pond, Fair Haven Beach, Lake Durant, Lewey Lake, Limekiln Lake, Meacham Lake and Wellesley Island campgrounds were added.

In 2013 Cranberry Lake, Lake Eaton, Nicks Lake, Delta Lake, Lake Harris, Moffitt Beach, Northampton Beach, Verona Beach, and Caroga Lake campgrounds were added.

In 2014 another 21 campgrounds were shot and were slowly added to the public database.

In 2015 Ausable Point, Robert Moses, Rogers Rock, Taylor Pond and Wilmington Notch were shot.

In early 2016 the Parkware management software was upgraded to streamline the process and provide for many for features such as maps, satellite maps, related links, more campground info and Dave's tips.

As of Feb 2016, 40 campgrounds with a total of 6,800 campsites and 33,000 photos were now available online.

In the spring of 2016 Dave did another photo shoot of over 20 campgrounds in the corridor below Syracuse to Albany, including the Catskills area including Beaver Spring Mountain, Beaverkill, Bowman Lake, Chengango Valley, Crown Pond, Devils Tombston, Fillmore Glen, Gilbert Lake, Glimmerglass, Kenneth L Wilson, Lake George Battlefield, Lake Taghkanic, Lincoln Pond, Little Pond, Max V Haul, Meadowbrook, Monguap Pond, Moreau Lake, North South Lake, Oquaga Creek, Putnam Pond, Robert H Treman, Sampson, Schodack Island, Taconic Copake Falls, Taconic Rudd Pond, Taughannock Falls, Thompsons Lake, and Woodland Valley were shot.

In the spring/summer of 2016 the server was upgraded to provide a faster experience and increased storage. As well a feature was added to the Parkware management software to provide Facebook comments. Photos for Cayuga Lake, Little Sand Point, Rogers Rock, Gilbert Lake, Moreau Lake and Glimmerglass were added.

In the fall of 2016 and winter of 2017 the Parkware management software was again upgrade to include many new features including Facebook comments, a new Campsite Finder Tool, a new Map feature, campgrounds close by, similar campgrounds. As well photos where processed and made available on the website for the following campgrounds: North South Lake, Chenango Valley, Taughannock Falls, Bowman Lake, Monguap Pond, Golden Hill, Grass Point, Lincoln Pond, Long Poing, Keewaydin, Thompsons Lake, Crown Point, Schodack Island, and Putnam Pond.

In 2017 another 11 campgrounds were shot including:

Western NY: Four Mile Creek SP, Darien Lake SP, Evangola SP, Lake Erie SP, Allegany SP, Stony Brook

1000 Islands / Lake Ontario: Whetstone Gulf SP and Eel Weir SP

Finger Lakes/Central New York: Butternut Falls, Green Lakes SP

Adirondacks: Macomb Reservation

For 2018 the goal is to shoot as many as possible of the following: Cumberland Bay, Eagle Point, Macomb Reservation, Paradox Lake, Sharp Bridge, Sacandaga Campground, Scroon Manor, Sharp Bridge, Luzerne.

Lined up for eventually reshooting due to reconfiguration/renumber are Stony Brook, Keuka Lake, Cargoa Lake, and Buttermilk Falls.

The long term goal, besides added the last remaining few campgrounds, is to expand the guide to include a handful of remote access campgrounds along with additional site features and content to provide additional ways to help campers discover/research campgrounds that best suit their needs.

How about those ads on the website? Sorry but after several years of paying out of pocket for the web server I had to install Google Adsense in order to offset some of my costs in running the website.

You can contact Dave with comments or suggestions at dave@campadk.com or .

NY State Campsite Photos Visitor Comments