As we circle under The Great Lakes towards Michigan we are making sure to stop in every state at least for a few days, our view, as we have said before, being that all of them have fantastic places to visit and great campgrounds to enjoy. As we would be passing through the NW corner of Pennsylvania, we made sure to schedule a stop there. Having just left a state park, we aimed for a private campground for this visit.
Since the niece was still with us, we restricted ourselves to Passport America (referrals available!) participants with plenty of kid friendly things and a swimming pool. We had about four to choose from that were generally along our route, and ended up selecting Whispering Winds Campground and Cabins for its solid reviews, nice amenities, and location within the heart of the Allegheny National Forest.
For $18 a night we got a full hook up site in an extremely well cared for campground. We sprung for the cable TV option for an additional $2 a day. In addition to the pool, rec room with billiards and air hockey tables, free wifi, playground, and very clean shower house, the property has a clear running little brook running right down the middle of it, resulting in most of the sites, including ours, backing directly onto it. This is pretty much my dream feature for any future home, so it was great to experience it for a few days. Kalynn and I spent plenty of time exploring it, catching crayfish, and spotting fish and even one water snake.
The property is not all that wide, but very deep, pushing back right up against a National Forest boundary, with a hiking trail leading out of the back fence line into the woods. Alongside the creek towards the rear of the property we found scores of black and blue butterflies on the damp ground that would rise up in a cloud around you as you passed.
We enjoyed it so much we didn’t feel the need to explore the area as much as we might have, instead spending our days swimming in the pool, catching up on a bit of TV, and of course, the dreaded hour of math tutoring. The place is such a nice little resort, with one of the few heated pools in the region, that locals purchase seasonal passes and use it like a day spa without even camping there. How great does a campground have to be to get that kind of commerce?
The owners and their work campers do a phenomenal job of keeping the place in perfect working condition and beautifully appointed. From the modern shower house to the wood foot bridge crossing the creek, it is just plain well done.
I struggle to come up with any downsides other than the shaky cell phone service in the area, and the need to be very careful driving a big rig down one of the campground roads due to the significant drainage control hump across it; though warned by the check in desk, I over-focused on finding our site and rocked the living heck out of the motorhome, opening up a cabinet and exploding a bottle of cayenne pepper all over our hallway floor. An easily avoidable and small price to pay for a great campground.
Other than that, buy your liquor before getting to this town; I am not clear if it was a state or local ordnance, or merely the size of the nearby village, but we could not find any place that sold anything other than standard domestic beer. Tragedy!