Frances Slocum State Park occupies 1,035 scenic acres in Pennsylvania’s northeastern region. The park is noted not only for its magnificent scenery but also for a captivating history. This Pennsylvania state park is named after a girl of the same name who was abducted by American Indians at the age of five and was held captive in what has now become Frances Slocum State Park. The RV park also draws significant attention for its horseshoe-shaped lake.
The 165-acre iconic Frances Slocum Lake is also a popular destination for activities like boating and fishing. The park also houses a swimming pool that welcomes swimmers to splash in the water during summer. Other recreational options at the park include wildlife watching, hunting, picnicking, hiking, and mountain biking. Winter activities include skiing, sledding, and ice skating.
Originally built with an intention to control flooding in 1968, Frances Slocum has an abundance of nature and splendor. The park features spell-binding wetlands, lakeshores, marshes, lush green fields, and thickly wooded forests rich in pine, thicket, hemlock, and larch trees. Diverse species of wildlife wander along the park in their natural habitats.
The park’s 100-site modern campground and availability of excellent camping amenities make Frances Slocum every bit worthy of your next RV camping adventure. There are electric hookups, dumping station, flush toilets, hot showers, and a well-stocked camp store. Camping only lasts during the peak season from April to October. Organized group tenting is also facilitated in a separate region nearby the main campground. The park is open all year long from sunrise to sunset for non-camping visitors.
Frances Slocum State Park is located in Pennsylvania’s Luzerne County. In your car or RV, it will take no more than half an hour to reach the park from nearby places like Wyoming, Dallas, Wilkes-Barre, and Kingston, under normal conditions.
A park permit is required to enter the park. Once you arrive at the park, you will find ample parking options to choose from. RVs and cars are not allowed on hiking and biking trails. The road going towards the campground from the park office is quite narrow so be on the lookout for problems that may arrive due to heavy traffic. Otherwise, the park roads are well-paved, wide, and offer helpful signs and road symbols.
There are parking lots at the entrance, in the campgrounds, and various other locations like the day-use area and lake. There are also two parking areas inside the campground.
Just to the north of Stony Point Campground, the 31 campsites at Hemlock Hill are smaller, primitive sites with no hookups. However, they do have a shower house, restrooms, and two potable water spigots. If you are bringing your pooch, make sure you check which sites are pet-friendly because there are only eight sites at this campground that allow pets. You will also need to check the length limits for RVs because they vary from 15 to 20 feet.
Each of the campsites has a campfire grill to cook on, a large picnic table, and is close to Frances Slocum Lake. In fact, you are close enough to see the water from any of the campsites here and it is just a short walk to the fishing, boating, and swimming areas. Reservations can be made up to 11 months in advance, but limited first-come, first-served sites are also available.
Stony Point is the largest campground with 53 campsites that offer modern 30- and 50-amp electric hookups. The length limits for these sites range from 15 to 50 feet and only 20 of them are pet-friendly, so be sure to check this when making your reservations. The campground is only open from April until October, and reservations can be made as early as 11 months in advance.
On-site amenities include a dumping station, potable water spigots, and modern restrooms with flush toilets and hot showers. Picnic pavilions, a boat dock, and a swimming area are nearby. Wi-Fi is typically not available at the campsites, although some campsites are better than others as far as reception goes. A few sites are ADA-accessible.
Campers are advised to reserve campsites in advance, but unreserved sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. However, you must register with the park office or camp host before setting up your campsite to make sure the site you want is not reserved. Length limits vary from 15 to 50 feet, so you need to check that before choosing a spot. All rules and regulations for first-come, first-served sites are the same as the reserved sites.
Just a short walk down the Campground Trail from the Rocky Knoll Walk-In Campground you can find the Modern Organized Group Tent Site. Your group has to be a formal organization that has a leader and periodic meetings to qualify to use this site. This campsite can accommodate up to 40 people with nine picnic tables, campfire rings, grills to cook on, and a huge area to play some frisbee, volleyball, or just toss around a ball.
You will have to leave the motorhome behind in the parking lot and hike in a little over 100 feet. Be sure to bring your own tents, sleeping bags, and other needed items like bug spray, cooking utensils, and lanterns. Reservations must be made at least three days in advance and can be made up to 11 months prior to your visit. Pets are not allowed so Fluffy will have to miss this group trip.
If you were thinking of doing some really rugged camping on this trip, leave the rig in the parking lot and head down the trail to Rocky Knoll Walk-In Campground. These sites, located to the north of Hemlock Hill Campground, are more spacious and secluded than the sites at the family campgrounds. You will have to carry in all the supplies you need such as tents, bedding, water, food, and whatever else you need. However, there is a restroom with showers nearby, so you won’t be too uncomfortable.
Frances Slocum is abounding with aquatic activities like swimming, boating, and fishing. If you are a passionate swimmer, don’t forget to pack your swimsuit and sunscreen in the camper as you will love to take a dip in the park’s swimming pool. Also, the park’s horseshoe-shaped 165-acre lake has a few exciting offerings in the form of boating and fishing. A boat concession store rents a variety of boats, kayaks, and canoes. So, park your RV aside and paddle to your heart’s content. Anglers can try their luck in catching gamefish like crappie, perch, catfish, bass, walleye, trout, and many more in the park’s lake. Let’s see how many fish you can take back home in your RV.
If you love outdoor picnic parties, you can plan one during your RV stay in the park with friends or family. Many picnic spots are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The picnic areas offer facilities like drinking water, modern style restrooms, and charcoal grills. Apart from regular picnic tables, the park also offers three picnic pavilions for groups as large as up to 110 people. These ADA-accessible pavilions are reservable, and reservations begin as early as 11 months in advance. Unreserved pavilions are given away on a first-come, first-served basis.
When it comes to wildlife, the park is abounding with a diverse range of species of flora and fauna throughout the year. RV campers frequently discover salamanders and wood frogs during spring. Painted turtles, great blue herons, various dragonfly species, white-tailed deer, and other wildlife inhabit the park in abundance. Fragrant wildflowers like hellebore and Jack-in-the-pulpit will take your breath away. These wildlife exhibits are a grand treat for the RV campers coming to the park.
Visitors coming to the park can treat themselves to various hunting opportunities. Hunting is allowed in 700 acres of the park. Archery hunting is permitted in 350 acres, and the rest of the hunting area sitting in the park’s west is open for hunting, trapping, and dog training. Dog training only exists during the off-season following Labor Day until the end of March. Wildlife and birds that can be hunted down include deer, waterfowl, turkey, squirrel, and rabbit.
The spectacular recreational opportunities in the winter will make your RV holiday extraordinary. The park makes arrangements for snowshoeing, sledding, ice skating, and cross-country skiing every winter. A sledding slope can be found to the west of the park’s pool. Ice skating opportunities can be discovered near the lake. The park’s day-use area and campground roads become popular cross-country skiing destinations in the winter. Fishing opportunities are not limited to summer as ice fishing can be enjoyed at the lake as well.
Frances Slocum State Park is luxurious in its availability of hiking trails spanning nearly 14 miles around the park’s most pleasant locations. A total of 10 hiking trails wander along the park’s fields, forests, lakeshores, and marshes. Five out of these 14 miles allow mountain bikers to ride their bikes along gorgeous locations. Both hiking and biking trails differ in lengths and difficulty levels making it convenient for novices and experts alike to enjoy their favorite activities. Don’t forget to check these scenic trails off your bucket list during your RV visit.