Can anyone advise how the campsites are in Achray in terms of privacy? I was there a few years back but stayed in the yurt there and I can't recall how the campsites were. I'm thinking of going up mid-week in mid-September for a solo trip. Any suggestions on sites would be appreciated!
I can't see mid week in September being a problem.
There are a few campsites that are relatively private that go first. I know there is a map of Achray Campgrounds somewhere on this site (might want to do a search). Also note that different areas of Achray now have differing rules......some sites there is a radio ban, other sites a pets ban, other sites a children ban, etc. etc. There might even be a no breathing ban, but I'm not sure. lol Better check this out before booking your site.
Thanks Bo I'd likely be going solo so I think I should be ok with most of the bans lol....Any idea what the drive time is from the Hamilton area? I'm looking on Google maps and it's telling me its over 7 hours to get there and i don't remember it taking that long! Again I can't remember (it was 2006 when I was there last). I found the map with all the sites and see the ones some have suggested.
The Achray campground is not like the sites I have stayed at along the corridor. The area is more wooded and creates a bit of a privacy illusion. My fave sites are 20, 23 and 24. They are waterfront with 23 and 24 being right on the beach. Nice if you don't mind sand. 20 is separated from 23 by a small day use picnic area with some stationary bbqs. 20 is a very large site that can accommodate a travel trailer so while a bit more expensive, the size of the site creates some added privacy and you have no immediate neighbours and the day use parcel never seems to be used. As far as travel time is concerned, from S. Ont. it is a long drive. You are basically driving to Petawawa plus the drive in on the Achray Rd. The drive to Pet is about 525km. Take Round Lake Road just before Killaloe to head north toward the Achray Rd and Sand Lake Gate. I would budget about six hours from Hamilton as it is fairly slow going the rest of the way from Huntsville if you take that route. Not a lot of difference if you head north from Belleville area. Hope that helps.
Funny Fred talks about sites 20, 23. I was at site 23 today and it is a dandy.
Sept is a great time to go, something like now (the campground is empty) except no bugs.
I would go with Freds recomendation of 20 0r 23.
If you take the Simpson Pit rd just east of Wilno you can save 1/2 hr.
I would say 6+ Hours. If you are considering the Belleville route I recommend staying on the HWY until 41 out of Napanee. It's a bit further but you get more time going 120km/hr on the HWY and 41 South of 7 is newly paved and a very nice drive.
We have been going to Achray for the last 5 years. (Heading up in 3 weeks . Sometimes we go in the summer but also as late as Thanksgiving. Because there are only 45 sites, Achray never seems busy. With so much to do in the area people are often away from the campground.
Since you are solo consider campsite 1. Very good privacay and that part of the campground will be empty in the fall. It can be windy but offers an unbeatable view down the lake. The pines on those sites are packed together so it can be a bit tricky to string a large tarp (good practice for you LOL). Sites 20 - 27 are all nice and right on the beach. Site 33 offers about as good privacy as you can expect at Achray. But, it is not on the beach. Site 37 is great but it is non reservable. Beside Site 37 is a very nice small red sand beach. I think site 17 is the best car campsite in Achray if not Ontario. Expecially if you are in a group and can get 18 as well. It has everything you could want. flat, big, private, its own rock point, its own beach etc... It is always booked.
I would have said about 7 hours. 4 hours can me to Bancroft from Waterloo on a good day and another couple to the Sand Lake Gate. I don't get over to that side of the park too often, so I could be high, but I'm quite sure that 5 hours would be a little too optimistic.
Does anyone have specific info on Site 18 in Achray? We've got it booked for next month. The pix online (Ont Parks Reservation) look great. It also looks like there's some kind of "lookout" at the point around Site 17?
Site 17 was gorgeous - it's up by that point. I've only stayed on site 44 and the Jump off sites. I don't recollect any being very private, but Achray is a great spot with tons to do /see. September can be busy, even in mid-week so I still recommend you do the reservation if you have a campsite(s) in mind. There are 'backcountry' canoe-to sites not far from the access/canoe launch on Grand Lake which offer much more privacy (and less expensive) that you may be looking for. If you need to use the facilities there (store, museum, bathroom, etc) you can always paddle back. TO time it closer to the fall color peak I'd suggest booking the last week of September if possible. Some wonderful night-sky views from the beaches. Have a great time!