RVers who crave water adventure should add Wisconsin's Peshtigo River State Forest and the Old Veterans Lake Campground to their lists to visit. The Old Veterans Lake Campground is one of the many camping areas in the vicinity, but it is the only campground that allows RV camping. The campground sits along the Old Veterans Lake, a small 11-acre lake that provides a reflective backdrop to many of the camping sites.
The Peshtigo River State Forest is Wisconsin’s newest state forest. The land spans over 9,200 acres of forest and 25 miles of river, providing a habitat for a variety of species, and a recreational haven for nature lovers coming to visit from both near and far. Water recreation is one of the top draws to the forest. There are 16 boat landings for boaters, paddlers, and anglers to access the water, and even though the river has many large dams, it doesn't stop people’s quest for adventure. The large rapids bring skilled white water kayakers and canoers as well as many novice paddlers who are looking for a guided float trip. The Peshtigo River is also a favorite fishing area. The flowages of the river usually attract boat fishers, and the section of the river rated for fly fishing is a Category 5 Regulated Trout Water.
RV Rentals in Peshtigo River State Forest
Transportation in Peshtigo River State Forest
The Old Veterans Lake Campground is located 40 miles northwest of Marinette and 70 miles northwest of Green Bay, Wisconsin. From the closest town, Crivitz, the campground is 16.5 miles northwest.
Wisconsin state parks assess a daily admission fee for all vehicles entering the facility. The fees support the operation of Wisconsin state parks, forests, and other recreation areas. Guests may purchase a daily or a yearly pass when entering any of the park, forest, and recreation facilities.
The campground closes between 11:00 pm and 6:00 am. All campers must be in their designated campsites during this time. Because of the forest’s quiet ordinance, no campers may set up or take down camping equipment during these hours.
Campgrounds and parking in Peshtigo River State Forest
Campsites in Peshtigo River State Forest
Old Veterans Lake Campground
The Old Veterans Lake Campground is a small campground that accepts reservations for the peak camping season and is a first-come, first-serve facility the rest of the operating season. During peak season, a minimum camping stay may be required. The individual sites are pet-friendly, with many of the spaces offering guests lake views. The large back-in, gravel driveways accommodate RVs and trailers up to 92 feet in length and have a fire ring and a picnic table. Each space is a primitive style, but campers have access to hydrants, vault toilets, and dumpsters within the campground. Quiet hours are between 11:00 pm and 6:00 am. Campers may not set up or take down camping equipment during these hours. Generators are generally not allowed in Wisconsin State Parks. Contact the park for specific generator questions.
Seasonal activities in Peshtigo River State Forest
Hikers who like to stay inside of the campground and have access to amenities within the park can go for a leisurely hike around Old Veterans Lake. The Old Vet’s Lake Loop trail is a one-mile trail accessible from the campground. Hikers who want more of a challenge and don’t mind leaving the campground should try the Spring Rapids Hiking Trails located within the state forest land. Trails range from easy to difficult and vary in length from .63 miles long to two and a half miles long. Detailed trail information is available on the park’s website or a park map.
Stay close to your campsite and bring the family to Old Veterans Lake for a day in the sun, sand, and water. The Old Veterans Lake Beach is close to the campground and near vault toilets and drinking water. The lake is known for its clear water, so swimmers who like to see what's around them in the water will love swimming here. If you want to go a little farther from the campground, the Musky Point Beach, located on Caldron Falls, gives swimmers access to grills, picnic tables, benches and vault toilets.
The lush landscape, the lakes, and the river make this area of Wisconsin a prime habitat for many animals. Black bears and whitetail deer pass through the state forest, as do other reptiles and amphibians. The bird viewing in the forest is especially plentiful, and a diverse species of waterfowl inhabit the area. Birdwatchers will love the opportunity to see bald eagles, osprey, sandhill cranes, loons, and great blue herons. The park asks that all wildlife watches keep a safe observing distance from birds and other animals, especially the bald eagles and osprey nesting area.
Sportsmen and women who enjoy hunting for whitetail deer, black bear small game, and migratory birds will enjoy the hunting in and around the Old Veterans Lake Campground. During hunting season, the land in the Peshtigo River State Forest is open for hunting. Hunters who want to stay and hunt near the Old Veterans Lake Campground need to be aware of 100-yard buffer around the campground and hunt only outside of that zone. If trapping is more your style, trap beaver, raccoon, mink, and muskrat within the Peshtigo State Forest.
Cross Country Skiing
The same trails that hikers enjoy during the warmer months are open to cross country skiers during the winter months. There are two areas that visitors commonly use for cross country skiing. The Spring Rapids Trails are groomed for classical and skate skiing. The trails range easy to difficult and vary in length from .63 miles long to 2.5 miles long. Pets are not allowed on this section of trails during the winter. The Seymour Rapids Trail is a three mile, un-groomed ski trail offering skiers beautiful scenery and plenty of steep hills.
The Peshtigo River State Forest is known for its excelling snowmobile trails. The trails are well maintained in cooperation with Marinette County and local snowmobile clubs. There are approximately 20 miles of paths that connect with the regional network of trails. The snowmobiling trails open and close depending on weather conditions. The country offers up to date information regarding the status of the snowmobile trails, as do many of the local snowmobile clubs. For details, rental information, and trail specifications visit the Peshtigo River State Forest website.