The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced new updates at the agency’s Adirondack and Catskill campgrounds ahead of the Independence Day holiday, which kicks off the busy season at State campgrounds. Changes include updating swimming policies for the 2023 camping season to specify unsupervised swimming at DEC campground beaches and extending the seasons at the popular Moffitt and Lewey Lake campgrounds. Lifeguards will continue to supervise swimming at DEC’s Lake George “Million Dollar Beach” and Hinckley Reservoir Day Use Areas.
“DEC is excited to welcome visitors back to our campgrounds for what will surely be another great season of enjoying the outdoors,” DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said. “Swimming, fishing, and boating are among the many activities that bring more than a million campers and day-users back to our facilities year after year. To continue to offer a quality recreational experience, DEC is transitioning our campground beaches in the Adirondack and Catskill Forest Preserve to unsupervised swimming areas to allow the public to continue enjoying this part of the camping experience and we also worked closely with local officials to help extend the season at Lewey Lake and Moffitt campgrounds and help more visitors enjoy fall in the Adirondacks.”
All DEC campgrounds will transition to unsupervised swimming at their beaches. Campers and day-users at campgrounds will be able to enjoy the beaches at all DEC campgrounds without potential closures. Beaches will continue to be maintained and patrolled by campground staff.
Lifeguards will continue to be on duty at DEC’s Lake George (Million Dollar) Beach and Hinckley Reservoir Day Use areas, which are primarily used for swimming. For campground visitors interested in lifeguarded beaches, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation operates campgrounds and other beaches across the state and offers a wide spectrum of experiences for residents and visitors alike.
DEC also announced the extension of the 2023 camping season at two Hamilton County campgrounds, Moffitt Beach and Lewey Lake. Both campgrounds will remain open through Columbus Day/Indigenous People’s Day. Inventory for reservations at Moffitt Beach and Lewey Lake beyond Labor Day will become available beginning at 8 a.m. on July 5, and patrons wishing to make reservations should do so at the ReserveAmerica website.
DEC announced another change earlier this year to allow all New York State campgrounds to accept reservations as late as the same day. Reservations will be required, and patrons can now book a camping reservation as late as 5 p.m. on the desired day of arrival. Also, the public may now book a one-night stay for the 2023 season at any DEC campground. This means that gaps between reservations will be able to be filled earlier than in the past.
For more information on reservations or DEC-operated campgrounds including a list of campgrounds and schedules, visit DEC’s website or call DEC’s Bureau of Recreation at 518-457-2500. To make reservations at any of DEC’s camping facilities, call ReserveAmerica at 1-800-456-CAMP (2267) or visit the ReserveAmerica website.
Photo at top: Lewey Lake Campgrounds and Day Use Area. NYS DEC photo.