Trap Pond State Park is just one of over a dozen amazing state parks in Delaware, yet at the same time, it is unlike any other in Delaware. As one of Delaware's first state parks and encompassing 3,653 acres, including Trap Pond and Raccoon Pond, the park is one of the oldest surviving pieces of a wetland that used to cover the area. History buffs will love learning about why the lake was originally created back in the 1700s, the history of the area, and the history of other Delaware state parks in the nature center.
The park also includes the southeastern tip of the James Branch Nature Preserve, but what makes it so unique is the vast recreational activities offered at this nature treasure trove. RVers can enjoy exploring trails on foot, bike, or horseback. Once you head out of the camper you can enjoy boating, birding, picnicking, and visiting the fascinating nature center.
Other amazing adventures include playing horseshoes, cornhole, volleyball, disc golf, and more. The park and the park store are open year-round, with the busiest months being from early June to mid-August. Some RVers choose to go during the fall and winter months when things aren't quite as busy, but not all amenities are available at these times, so make sure you plan your trip ahead of time.
Getting to Trap Pond State Park shouldn't prove to be difficult, as it can easily be accessed using US-13 in Sussex County, Delaware. Once you enter the park, you'll find most of the "roads" are not paved and are actually trails. The paved roads within the park will take you around the forested section but won't take you to most of the recreational activities. However, they are all pretty straight and lack any major hairpin turns.
The road from the entrance to the campground is paved and should be easy to navigate. You probably won't want to use your RV to get around the park during your stay, so it is worth considering bringing an extra vehicle with you. If you bring an extra vehicle, be prepared to park it in the overflow lot because only one vehicle is allowed per campsite.
If you are staying in the park, the easiest place to park is at your campsite. However, there is also parking located at the Day Use Area. If you are bringing your horse with you during your stay, you can park at the Horse Trailer Parking Lot, which is located near the Nature Center. There are nature trails that will take you all over the park, so it is easy to get around on foot, by bike, or on horseback.
The campground at Trap Pond State Park is very large, consisting of 142 campsites on the pond's northern shore. Twelve of the campsites are tent-only, but the remaining 130 can accommodate RVs and trailers between 25 and 50 feet long and feature both water and electricity hookups. The electric sites are available to reserve up to a year in advance, and since it is a popular RV destination all year long, it's recommended you make a reservation. Many visitors love the feeling of camping right in the middle of mother nature’s splendor that this campground provides since the sites are within the tall loblolly pines.
Besides being right on the lake's shore, restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities are available within the campground. You'll also enjoy a fire pit, grill, and picnic table at your campsite. The kids will love the playground nearby and you will like not having to go far to dump your black tank since there is an RV dump site near the camp. Two hiking trails are also easily accessible from the campground, with one passing directly through the campsites. Pets are allowed at the campground but must be attended to at all times.
If you have never tried camping in a yurt, why not start a new tradition of yurting at Trap Pond State Park? You will have to plan this in advance and make reservations way ahead of time since they only have two of them. And you won’t be able to stay in a yurt if you are bringing your pooch because no pets are allowed in the yurts. So, if you don’t know what a yurt is, it’s a round wooden structure with thick canvas walls. They have bunk beds with single and double beds as well as a futon with a double bed, so up to five people can sleep comfortably.
There is no cooking inside the yurt, but there is a BBQ grill and fire ring along with a picnic table outside. The large deck has space for everyone to sit and enjoy the view of the lake, which is just a few feet away. Open from March until December, yurting is like no other camping experience you have ever had. And it even has air conditioning, so you don’t get too hot during the summer. Be sure you bring your own blankets, cooking supplies, and trash bags.
If you were thinking of ditching the rig and going rustic in a cabin, Trap Pond State Park has you covered. However, you cannot bring your pooch, so he will have to skip this adventure. Each two-room camping cabin is right on the water with a beautiful view from the screened porch or picnic table outside. The cabin has one double bed and two bunk beds to sleep a total of four guests. You will stay comfortable in the cabin no matter what the temperature outside since it has air conditioning and heat.
Although there are no kitchen or cooking provisions inside, you can cook outside on the provided grill. You’ll also find a potable water spigot outside your cabin for drinking and cooking. The large picnic table is big enough for everyone so you can all eat together as a group. No need to try and balance your plate on your lap in a camp chair. Reservations can be made up to 12 months in advance with a minimum of three nights on holiday weekends.
Birding is popular at Trap Pond State Park but makes an especially good activity during the winter months when not all activities are doable. Whether you're exploring the trails or just relaxing by the pond, there are a plethora of avian species to spot. During the winter months, visitors can spot blue herons, geese, and bald eagles hanging out around the water. Other feathered critters in the park include all kinds of songbirds such as finches and sparrows. The park really is a bird lover's paradise year-round and the super helpful birding guide available on the park's website lets you know what birds you can spot during what seasons. So, don't forget to pack your binoculars in your camper.
A fun, family-friendly 18-hole disc golf course is available to use at Trap Pond State Park. Disc golf can be enjoyable any time of year. Not a lot of state parks boast this feature, so it's worth giving it a go before you leave the park, even if you've never played before. With distances between holes ranging from 195 to 361 feet, tight fairways, and some wooded areas, there is plenty of variety and challenges for all. The course is great for beginners and experienced players alike, and best of all, it's free.
Bring your other four-footed friends with you to Trap Pond State Park so you can enjoy the bridle trails together. There are five equestrian trails for horse lovers, and you can enjoy them all in one day if you choose to. The equestrian section of Bob Trail is 1.2 miles of waterside trekking from the campground to Huckleberry Trail. Keep going on the Huckleberry for another 1.6 miles to get back to the horse trailer parking lot. Or head down to Raccoon Pond from Wootten Road where you can meander along the eastern edge of the pond and back.
If you are into hunting, be sure to bring along your hunter orange vest and hat so you can go for that white-tailed deer at the park. You will have to have your hunting license and tags from Delaware State on you at all times when hunting. Make sure you follow all the state’s rules and regulations. Also, practice safe hunting at all times and know what to do in an emergency. Always let someone know where you will be going and when you will be back, just in case.
Several miles of trails are available throughout Trap Pond State Park of varying difficulty and length. The good news is there are trails that are kid-friendly, like the short half-mile American Holly Trail. Most of the trails are meant for hiking and biking, but a few of them only allow hiking, so make sure you check what is allowed before setting off with your bike. A few of the trails also allow horseback riding. Always practice proper trail etiquette. No matter how you choose to explore the trails, you'll certainly enjoy several scenic views of the park and the wildlife that inhabit it.
Kids of all ages can enjoy a variety of both day and overnight camps at Trap Pond State Park. The camps equip children with survival skills and inspire many to be outdoorsy nature masters. They're also a great way to get kids to spend some time outside and appreciate nature in their everyday lives. Some camps are better suited for older kids, ages 10 to 14, but several part-time day camps are also available for younger kids. Trap Pond is a perfect place to take a family RV vacation with activities for all ages to enjoy.
Staying at Trap Pond State Park wouldn't be complete without trying your hand at fishing. Whether you are brand new or have years of experience, Trap Pond is the perfect place to spend an afternoon fishing. Exactly what you get will depend on what time of year you go, but visitors report common catches such as crappie, bass, bluegill, and catfish. Just be sure to get your fishing license before going angling at Trap Pond State Park.
If fishing isn't your thing, or you want to get out farther in the water before casting your line, try boating on Trap Pond. Both kayak and canoe rentals are available, or you can bring your own to launch from the boat launch. There are even three "trails" within the park for you to follow, the Trap Pond Water Trail, Terrapin Branch Water Trail, and Raccoon Pond Water Trail. For an even more laid-back boating experience, pontoon boat tours are offered during the summer months. The boating experience is one of the best in the entire state when you take an RV road trip to Delaware.