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The New York State campsite guide is a campsite photo project created by Dave McGrath beginning back in 2006 for campers who enjoy camping in New York state. More specifically those who prefer a lakeside camping experience.

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The aim of this project was 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 92 (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. Check out photos for Fish Creek Pond Campground as an example.

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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.

Having done Fish Creek and Rollins which are the most extensive photo guides, Dave moved on to shoot an additional 78 campgrounds starting back in 2011 and expanded his Parkware Campground Manager software to simplify the process of managing and coding the thousands of photos. As time permitted, photos for each campground were added to the database.

In early 2016 the Parkware management software was again upgraded to streamline the process of adding/managing photos 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.

As of Dec 31, 2018, 82 campgrounds with a total of 11,900 campsites and 65,000 photos were now available online.

For 2019 the goal is to:

  • shoot the remain campgrounds missing for New York State including: Cumberland Bay, Sacandaga Campground, Luzerne
  • upload exist photos for Devils Tombstone, Eagle Point, Eel Weir, Kenneth L Wilson, Lake Taghkanic, Max V Shaul, Sharp Bridge, Taconic Copake Falls and Taconic Rudd Pond
  • shoot additional 360 video tours at popular campgrounds
  • expand the site to include additional features including individual site comments and user submitted campground reviews

Lined up for eventually reshooting due to reconfiguration/renumber are Caroga Lake, Buttermilk Falls and Selkirk Shores.

Future goal include expanding 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 many 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 image.

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