2023 Ultimate Toys Traveler
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The 3,512-acre Pymatuning State Park is located near Andover in Ashtabula County, Ohio, and just over an hour east of Cleveland. The park is split into numerous small packets spread along the shoreline of Pymatuning Lake, many of which are in neighboring Pennsylvania. When you book an RV in Ashtabula County you open up a beautiful area to explore with the family.
The lake was created in 1934 by damming the Shenango River near Jamestown, PA. A three-mile causeway connects the two states near the center of the lake, close to the Ohio park office. With an area of over 17,000 acres, the lake is a huge attraction for fishing, boating, and swimming.
RV camping at state parks is great for wildlife watching, and Pymatuning State Park is no exception. You’ll find large colonies of Canada Geese here during the winter. At times there are over 20,000 individual birds, and an even greater number of ducks, and other species.
With many activities to take part in, camping with an RV at Pymatuning State Park is great for a family vacation. The park activities are mainly focused on the lake, but there are two short hiking trails available. Whispering Pines Trail is an easy 0.4-mile route that ends near the shoreline, while Beaver Dam trail is a one-mile loop that starts and ends near the beach.
Boating on the lake is very popular, but be aware that there is a 10-horsepower limit for powered boats. You’ll find five boat ramps around the lake, with one located in the northern campground. There are around 400 boat moorings available if you want to bring your boat and leave it for the season, and there are many boat rental facilities around the lake.
Fishing is another popular activity, as the lake is well-stocked and known for its walleye. Anglers will also be able to catch bass, catfish, crappie, and many more. It is known as one of the best fishing lakes in the area. If you want to fish from a boat, you will need a license from either Ohio or Pennsylvania. Should you decide to shore fish, you need a license from the state that you are fishing in.
South of the causeway, is where you will find a 500-foot swimming beach with changing and shower facilities. Swimming is only permitted during the daylight hours and in designated areas, but pets are allowed on the beach.
An archery range is located near the campgrounds and equipment can be rented from the park office. Picnicking is encouraged, with several dedicated areas around the park along the shoreline. Camping with an RV here could be the start of a great family vacation.
During the winter, the park offers a range of activities, including ice-fishing, ice-skating, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling. The Jamestown park office can rent you skis and ice skates.
Pymatuning campground on the Ohio side is split into three main areas, all located next to each other. A total of over 350 sites are available, with a small number being full service. The majority have an electrical connection, and there are around 20 sites that are just basic hard-stands.
Modern flushing toilet and hot shower facilities are available, as is a laundry and campground store. A few the sites are labeled as premium and are close to the shoreline. If you want one of these, then it is definitely best to book early. Your pets are allowed on some sites, but not all, so again, best to check in advance.
On the campground are a volleyball and basketball court, an amphitheater for regular events, a playground and easy access to the large swimming beach. With plenty to do and a beautiful lakeside location, RV camping at Pymatuning State Park is a great location for a one site vacation.
When you stay at this campground in early August, make sure you don’t miss the Pymatuning Lake Festival in Andover. This two-day event has grown over the years and now attracts thousands of visitors each year for live music, craft fair, boat rides, and other activities. It’s a great family event, on the lakeshore near the campground.
Locally in Ashtabula County, there are around 24 wineries to discover and sample their wares, but leave the rental RV at the campground!
Covered bridges are a feature of the county, and Olin’s Museum of Covered Bridges is dedicated to preserving the history. The museum was opened in 2003 as a tribute to Naomi Olin Bottorf who spent much of her life working to protect the bridges. It is open on certain days from June 1st thru October 31st, so calling ahead is advisable.