Category Archives: Tate’s Hell State Forest camping

CS 48, Warren Bluff Road Campsite, Tate’s Hell State Forest Camping



Reserve this campsite on Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Picketts Bay section. When you get to your campsite, check for the closest point to your site to get cell coverage. If you call 911, give 1310 Warren Bluff Camp Road, Tate’s Hell State Forest, as your address, GPS 29.87356, -84.69641. First responders will not be able to find you by just your campsite number. Reserve America will not include this address in your confirmation.

As in many Tate’s Hell campsites, the road to your campsite can be a long and windy (and private) road.

Upland pine forests leading to estuaries — you get two habitats.

Remains of timber plantation drainage ditches remain, draining into Crooked River.

The campsite itself is large — like other Tate’s Hell sites you can configure to your party and your needs.

For paddlers, access to Crooked River is easy.

This was taken at low tide.

The view is spectacular — wide open spaces.

Below view to your right and below that to your left.

At low tide, there is a swath of sandy beach.

False rosemary blooming in late February, rather early this year.

If you camp(ed) here, please comment in the box provided at the end of this post.

CS 47, Oxbow Campsite, Tate’s Hell State Forest

Campsite 47 is on Warren Bluff Road and we were encoutering large water-filled holes that when we realized we had missed the turn to this site. We didn’t feel like retracting our bumpy/muddy excursion to find it. We will report on it when it dries out. Warren Bluff Road probably should not be attempted when its wet by passenger cars. Tate’s Hell State Forest was purchased by the state for restoration of a critical watershed for two major north Florida rivers and restoration is the primary mission of this forest. GPS location: 29.87059, -84.68293.

CS 46 – Sunday Rollaway Campsite, Tate’s Hell State Forest

You can reserve this camp site on Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Picketts Bay section. When you get to your site, check cell coverage and find closest point where you can get that coverage. If you need to call 911 give 640 Sunday Rollaway Camp Road, Tate’s Hell State Forest, as your address, GPS 29.90432, -84.65221. First responders will not be able to find you if you only give a campsite number. Reserve America will not include this information on your confirmation.

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Sunday Rollaway bears the remnants of the pine plantation which it was before the state of Florida acquired Tate’s Hell State Forest to restore it to its natural function — a watershed for the Ochlockonee and Apalachicola Rivers.

After a long entry drive, one comes across this delightful end of the road camp site.

The photo above is facing the entrance. It’s what one would see while camping here.

If you have children, they will immediately be taken by the small sandy area at the end of the road where the remnants of pilings which held a bridge are still visible.

Although folks who bank fish may wish access to the end of the road, it seems you can spread out as much as you like without blocking road access to them as a matter of courtesy. Those wishing to launch come campsites are allowed to do so in Tate’s Hell State Forest; hopefully they will respect your desire for privacy and room and will park the cars at the entry and walk in to the river once the boats have been unloaded.

The channels alongside the campsite may make for a buggy summer. This seems an ideal fall through spring site.

The campsite sits high enough above the water line that it will remain dry.

A small area of sand at the end will allow for easy access of canoes or kayaks.

The view to the left at the end of the road is the Crooked River East and to the right Crooked River as it winds itself into and estruarian environment to join the Carrabelle River (New river) and then to the Gulf of Mexico.

Tate’s Hell provides several different type of low land ecosystems in which to camp. You will be camping in estuaries here — giving you wide expanses of sky (sun and moon).

In an prematurely early spring we saw buckwheat trees in full bloom along the entry and white violets on the ground.

There are few trees on this site, so it may be very hot during the summer. Not sure whether you’ll be close enough to the ocean to benefit from evening breezes.

If you camp here, please post your comments on the box provided at the end of this post.

CS 45 Crooked River Tate’s Hell State Forest

Reserve this site at Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Crooked River section. If you call 911 give 1000 Crooked River Camp #45 Rd., Tate’s Hell State Forest, as your address, GPS 29.91136, -84.58628. First responders will not be able to find you if you use the CS number in Tate’s Hell State Forest. Reserve America will not include this information in your confirmation.

When you get to your site, check your cell phone connection or find the closest point where you can get a connection.

This site is on the south side of the Crooked River with a long entry.

Right on the river, it is a large lot.

There is no landing, but canoes and kayaks can be launched from the river’s edge.

To view of the river facing east and west are shown below respectively.

If you camp here, please post your comments about this site in the box provided at the end of this post.

CS 44, Crooked River, Tate’s Hell State Forest

Campsite #44 and Campsite #45 are on the south side of the Crooked River which connects the Ochlockonee River on the east to the Carrabelle (New River) to the west. It is subject to tides from Ochlockonee Bay and from Carrabelle Bay.

This site may be reserved at Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest Crooked River Section. If you call 911 the address you should give for this site is 680 Crooked River Camp #44 Road, Tate’s Hell State Forest, GPS 29.90908, -84.60210. First responders will not be able to find you if you only give them the campsite number in Tate’s Hell State Forest. Reserve America will not include this information on your confirmation.

When you get to your site, check your mobile phone connection or find the closest point where you can send and receive calls.

This has a very long entry.

This site also has a landing which is used by motorized boats and a circle to enable trucks and trailers to launch and a separate large parking area is for the fishermen parking.

The campsite sits right on the Crooked River.

The view west toward the Carrabelle River is shown below and below that the view east to the Ochlockonee River.

If you camp at any of these sites, please add your comments in the box provided at the end of this post.

Campsites #41-#43, Rock Landing Campground, Tate’s Hell State Forest

There are 3 campsites at Rock Landing Campground. Only sites 41 and 42 are reservable through Reserve America. Site 43 is a walk-in campsite. All three sites have connecting sections which can, for groups, expand the large sites into even larger ones. If you call 911 the address for this campground is 5081 Rock Landing Rd, Tate’s Hell State Forest. GPS 29.98018, -84.56822. First responders will not be able to find you if you just giver your campsite number in Tate’s Hell SF. Reserve America will not include this information on your confirmation.

When you get to your site, check your cell phone signal or find the closest place you will be able to transmit or receive calls.

Rock Landing Recreation area includes a covered group pavilion, a single picnic table, unisex vault toilet, a boat landing, 2 reservable campsites and 1 walk-in campsite. It is both a day use area and a camping area. There is no potable water at this campground.

The view west of the Crooked River is show below and below that is the view east of the Crooked River.

The Crooked River meets the Ochlockonee River on the east and Carrabelle River (New River) on the west. The Crooked river is impacted by tides from the east and tides from the west.

Campsite #41

Closest to the day use area and vault toilet, CS 41 has a connecting area which can expand group camping areas if two sites are reserved. The lot is large.

Campsite #42

The above photo is the connector between CS 41 and 42.

Campsite #43

Campsite #43 cannot be reserved, it is a walk-up site. However, there is a connector between campsite 42 and 43.

The connector between CS 43 and 42.

If you camp here, please add your comments in the box provided at the end of this post.

CS 28, Loop Landing, Tate’s Hell State Forest

Reserve this site on Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Womack Creek section. If you need to call 911, the address of the campsite is 5500 Loop Landing Road, Tate’s Hell State Forest. GPS 29.99005, -84.53565. First responders will not be able to find you if you give only your campsite number. Reserve America will not list this information on your confirmation.

When you get to your campsite, check your cell phone signal or find the nearest location where you will be able to send or receive calls.

Loop Landing campsite is located on the eastern end of the Crooked River, close to where the Crooked River meets the Ochlockonee River.

Right now, the campsite is pretty muddy, a combination of the clearing of debris and trees which fell from the winds of Hurricane Michael and possibly also heavier RV traffic on this site. This is a tent/RV site, but right now less attractive for tent camping. Normally, there is much more grassy areas.

It is one of the loveliest campsites in Tate’s Hell, large as are most of the forest’s sites and secluded.

A family of river otters lives nearby.

It is easy to put-in and take-out at this landing.

The view of the western Crooked River is first and below that, the view eastward where Crooked River joins the Ochlockonee River.

If you camp here, please post your comments in the box at the end of this post.

CS 29-40 – Womack Creek Campground, Tate’s Hell State Forest

You can reserve the sites at the Womack Creek Campground at Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Womack Creek Campground. If you have to call 911, your address is 5503 Jeff Sanders Rd., GPS 30.00197, -84.53935. Emergency responders will need the street address. This information is not included in your Reserve America confirmation.

When you arrive at your site, check to see where you can get coverage, if you cannot get coverage at your site.

At 5503 Jeff Sanders Rd. you will find Womack Creek Campground, the largest of Tate’s Hell State Forest’s campgrounds. Although called “primitive” it has currently a large rest house with hot showers and flush toilets. Water is not potable; it can be filtered, but water in the area smells of shulper and needs to sit overnight to remove the smell. Recommend you bring your own drinking and cooking water. Because the resthouse sits on the rim of a bluff overlooking a curve in the Ochlockonee River, the sandy banks have been eroding at a very rapid rate and is currently about 1 foot away from a corner of the foundation. The restroom facilities may soon be closed because of the danger of collapse of the foundation. In such a situation, Tate’s Hell Forestry may have to install vault toilets because the primitive tent sites are too close to each other even though well separated by thick palmetto stands. Digging your own toilet as in isolated single sites in the forest is not sanitary.

Although any number of hosts and visitors have noted that the eroding banks should be shored up over the years, nothing has been done that we can see. This is a lovely campground and increasingly has attracted group camping.

It has been a favorite campground for us because it’s the landing to Womack Creek. In 2013 we organized a paddle for about 85 paddlers to camp here for a weekend and paddle Tate’s Hell SF and area paddling venues. A major front caused cancellation of the paddles on the last day. Tate’s Hell Forestry was very supportive of the group’s plans and provided free firewood and other assistance to enable the event to be a success. Talquin State Forest Region Recreation coordinators have always been willing to help with group events in the forests under their jurisdiction.

We noticed yesterday when we took these photos that there was more dog poop around the campground, which is not common here (or any campsite in Tate’s Hell SF). As tenters, we are particularly conscious of dog feces since we are sleeping directly on ground and walk the area a lot more than campers do. If you reserve a campsite here and you are tenting, you might wish to call the Tate’s Hell State Forest office and request that they remind the host to clean up the dog poop before you expect to be there. If you are trying to introduce a good tenting experience to friends or family, this is sure to discourage them from doing any more camping.

Also, be warned that the host has a dog which while very friendly jumps on you. It is not on lease as it should be. Before you let your children out of your site area, you may want to check with the host to make sure that he is aware that you have children, particularly if you have a child who may not be familiar with dogs larger than they are and may not know how to handle an overly friendly dog.

This is what you will see as you drive into the campground.

This is the parking area for cars for those in the tent only campsites which are inaccessible to cars.

This is the site of the host’s trailer, the only host at Tate’s Hell State Forest. Hosts are volunteers.  They volunteer 20 hours a week of volunteer time and are given a site and water and electricity hook-up for that work. The host at Womack Creek campground is also responsible for the campsites at Nick’s Road landing and other nearby campsites. This is very hard work, so please be patient with them. The regular work often takes more than 20 hours a week and they often buy from their own pockets paper and soap for the bathrooms. To assist these volunteers, you can keep the restrooms and your campsite clean and clear of garbage and debris and clean up your firepit of thrash — the firepit is not a thrash bin.

Campsite 33 and 35 are not reservable. For those camping here, place your fee in the envelope provided and deposit the check/cash in envelope in this iron ranger. There is a day use fee of $2. Campers from other sites often use the showers at Womack Creek Campground. They should pay the day use fee of $2 per person.

This is an enclosure to protect the burrow of a gopher tortoise, an endangered specie and keystone specie. Keystone species are essential to many other living things which depend on them or their habitats to live. In the case of gopher tortoises, about 150 different species including a number of other endangered species. Please do not use this area as a play area and if you see a gopher tortoise, stay away — they are not play animals. They are essential denizens of this ecosystem.

The rest rooms have a very long and wide veranda from which one can rock and view the Ochlockonee river flowing below you. Those rocking chairs were donated by the then Florida Canoe and Paddling Connection paddlers (now Florida Kayaking.com) who held a camp/paddle here in 2013.

The view downriver – note how close the banks are to the rest rooms.

The upriver view from the veranda. At dusk and at dawn this is an incredibly reposeful place to be.

Between the boat landing and the restrooms are the day use pavilions with 2 grills.

And below that is a grassy play area and the boat landing.

The Ochlockonee River curves just before this landing. At flood tide, there are eddies which are quite strong upstream of the landing. Looking upstream you will see the opening of Womack Creek on the left and to the right the Ochlockonee River.

CAMPSITES IN CAMPGROUND

CS #29

This is a tent only campsite as are campsites 3-33, 35, 37. Campsites 33 and 35 are not reservable, but available on a walk-in basis.

The tent sites vary in size, but are not large. There is a picnic table at each campsite and a fire pit. Remember that if you plan to use the fire pit, the tent should not be too close to it or the flying embers will burn a hole in your tent fly.

This site is large enough to hold a 4-6 person tent. It will be cramped.


Except for campsite 37 and the RV/tent sites cars are not accessible to the site. That campsite is not reservable, but is the largest tent site in the campground.

Campsite 30 should accommodate a 4 person tent or 2 two person backpacking tents.

I failed to get the sign post photo of the site below, which is campsite 31.

In the middle of the campsites is a large area for a group fire pit.

Campsite 32 is a smaller tent site which can accommodate a 4 person tent.

Campsite 33 is a non reservable site.

Campsite 34 is an RV/tent site with electricity. It costs more and is reservable. Of the 3 RV/tent sites this may have the largest tent site not on gravel.

This is campsite 35 which is walkable from the main entry road, but car parking is in the group parking area. It is not reservable.

It is one one of the more private of the campsites at this campground.

Campsite 36 is an RV/T site with gravel.

One could pitch a small tent here or at the entrance in a small triangular grassy area right off the main road.

Campsite 37 is the largest of the tent sites and one can park one’s car in the site.

Campsite 38 is an RV/tent site with electricity.

If you camp here, please post your comments in the box provided at the end of this post.

This is a smaller tent only site for a 2 person tent.

A young couple from Indiana was camping here. It rained the night before, but they enjoyed biking the trails.

If you camp at any of these sites, please add your comments.

CS 27 Nick’s Road Campsite, Tate’s Hell State Forest

You can reserve CS 27, Nick’s Road Campsite on Reserve America, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Womack Creek section. When you arrive at your campsite, locate the closest point for cell coverage. If you need to call 911, the address you should give is 41379 SE, State Forest Nick’s Road in Liberty County, GPS 30.01449, -984.57739. Reserve America will not include this important information in your confirmation notice.

To get to Womack Creek Campground, Nick’s Road Campsite is 3.75 miles by paddle. By driving it is longer — about 5 miles.

We paddle Womack creek up and back from the Womack Creek Campground landing at least once a month and Nick’s is where we take out for lunch. It’s a muddy take-out, or, if the water really is low we stay in our kayaks. There is a sharp drop, but only when the water is really low. Otherwise it’s getting out in muck. It’s a lovely campsite and a great place for a private lunch.

Several years ago we camped here with two mothers and four children. The water was very high in early March and the landing was grass rather than muck. Three tents housed the party and while the adults snoozed in the next morning, the four kids explored upper Womack creek in the kayaks, having a great time in the early morning. This is a great site for families because the creeks offer so much for children to discover and enjoy.

This campsite can accommodate many more than 3 tents: we had two large tents and one small 2 person backpacking tent. This is a big site.

The landing (below) is mucky, but sloped. At very low tide, there is a sharp drop.

This is the view of Womack Creek downriver from this site and below that upriver. Upriver is where the kids explored in the early morning.

There’s a hawk which nests in this area and at dusk and night one can hear a pair of barred owls. Up the creek we have seen otters. In the spring from March through May, the creek is abloom. To see what’s up on Womack Creek see https://womackcreek.wordpress.com A Paddler’s Guide To the Flowering Plants of Womack Creek.

If you camp (ed) here, please post your comments in the box provided at the end of this post.

CS 26 – Log Cabin Campground, Tate’s Hell State Forest

You can reserve this site on Reserve America, Log Cabin Campground, Tate’s Hell State Forest, Womack Creek section. If you need to call 911, give them 34471 Log Cabin Road as your address. First responders will not know how to reach you otherwise. Reserve American confirmation will not give you this information.

When you get to your campsite, check to see where you can get cell phone service, if you cannot get it on your site.

This campground of 4 RV/tent sites is situated on the eastern border of Tate’s Hell State Forest on the western banks of the Ochlockonee River which runs from Georgia through Florida to the Gulf of Mexico. The forest and plants in this campground are different from the rest of Tate’s Hell SF which is either in upland pine and palmetto or on estuary and estuary swamps.

When trees are fully leafed you will have a canopy of oaks, magnolias, bays, gums, some pines, red maple, gall berry, palmetto and high bush blueberries. Occasionally you may see the pink pinxster wild azaleas in late March and early April. Both purple and white violets are common in spring as are bluetts when the blueberries and St. John’s wort are blooming.

Like the other three sites, this site is large. This site is 2.2 miles from the beginning of Log Cabin Road. However, sites 24-26 are close enough situated so that the 3 sites would make an excellent way for groups of up to 24 adults to get together for camping.

To get to this site, take County Road 67 and turn east on Short Road in Tate’s Hell State Forest. Drive for .9 miles to Log Cabin Road and continue driving on Log Cabin Road for another .9 miles to get to the first site, campsite 23 and follow the road to campsite 26.

The forests have recently undergone a managed burn which mimics the burning of forests by lightening. You may see burned shrubs or burned areas near or around your campsite. This is currently a best practice in forest management and Tate’s Hell State Forest was acquired by the state in order to restore it as a natural watershed for both the Ochlockonee and Apalachicola Rivers, two very important north Florida waterways.

Launching a boat from this site would not be wise. There is a sharp drop at river’s edge. Use the landing at campsite 23.

Below the sand is a 2 foot drop at current river levels.

The view from the site downriver and upriver are shown below.

If you camp(ed) here, please add your comments in the box at the end of this post.