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Thursday, August 19, 2010


Our row Our Opinion: Recommend.  A park-like campground in an urban area with a rural feel.

Date of Stay:  August 17 through 21, 2010.

Weather During Stay:  Warm and humid, highs around 80, lows around 70. 

Site Description:  This campground occupies a small part of a very large county park, with lakes, biking, hiking, and equestrian trails, and a couple nice playgrounds. The campground has sites of all kinds: 58 FHU (20/30/50 amp), 23 E (20/30 amp) only, and 11 tent sites with no utilities.  Some of the sites in the E only loop are suitable for large rigs.  Most sites are back-ins; 3 sites are pull-outs along the loop road.

Roads in the FHU loops are paved.  All sites are manicured dirt/gravel, as are the roads in the non- FHU loops.  All sites have a large, heavy picnic table and fire ring.  FHU sites have less shade, but all sites are surrounded by thick green grass.

Site 48 The majority of the sites are reasonably spacious, some VERY spacious, others not so much.  The non-FHU sites have a lot of shade and privacy.

We were in the FHU loop, site 48.  Good voltage, adequate water pressure, the site was long and spacious - just one complaint: it wasn’t level!  About half of the FHU sites are sufficiently sloped that large motor homes either used leveling blocks in addition to jacks, or were jacked so high that their front wheels were off the ground.  It is hard to figure out why such a lovely, modern campground would not have leveled the big, spacious campsites adequately.

All loops had nice bathhouses.  A dump station is near the entrance/exit.  The campground uses a central dumpster with separate cans for paper and “mixed” recycling (I like to see recycling at a campground).

One of the E only sites, in the east loop Rate: Varies by type of site: FHU - $32.14/night; E only, $26.78/night; No hookups - $18.21/night.  Tack on an extra $7 if you want to make a reservation.  We got in on a mid-week special, so paid half price for our FHU site on the weeknights - nice!

Phone/radio/TV: Good Verizon signal for the aircard and phones.  WiFi is included in the camping rate, but we didn’t need or use it.  No obstacles for our roof-mounted satellite, and over a dozen channels on the antenna including several PBS stations.  NPR is available at 91.1 and others.

Elevation/Landscape/Terrain:  Elevation is around 1,000 feet, with green, slightly hilly terrain.  Views are of other rigs, thick grass, and big green trees.

Lighting/Noise:  Several streetlights are left on all night; fortunately none were right next to us.  There is some traffic noise, but not more than is expected in an urban environment.  The campground is not far from the Minnesota Zoo, where LOUD summertime concerts lasted until around 10:30 pm on two of the nights we visited.

Typical FHU sites at Lebanon Hills Favorite Sites:  We didn’t make a list, but would ask for a level site if we called for a reservation, probably site 44.  There are a couple of sites that were less desirable than the majority (2 and 53) - shorter and tighter - and it appears they don’t use those unless the campground is full.  Our site faced mostly north, nice when the weather is hot.

Hiking/Walking:  Excellent!  A one-mile mown grass hiking trail leads from the east loop of the campground to another section of this large park with miles and miles of hiking trails (hiking/ biking, and equestrian trails are separated in this park, a nice touch).

Comments: We came to this park to visit friends and Costco (we’d been out in the boonies too long!).  If you need/want to be in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, this is a very pleasant campground.  For a campground map, visit the website: Lebanon Hills Campground.

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