Best Tent Camping: Alabama is your guide to the 50 best tent-camping sites in the Heart of Dixie. Whether you prefer the pristine white beaches of the Gulf of Mexico. or the mountains and canyons of the Tennessee Valley, or something in between, Alabama has it all. This guide, by Joe Cuhaj, takes you to the most beautiful, yet lesser known, of the state's campsites, guaranteeing you a peaceful retreat. Each guidebook entry provides the latest maps of the grounds; each entry also alerts you to the best sites within the facility to ensure a rewarding and relaxing visit. The guidebook's campsite ratings on beauty, privacy, spaciousness, quietness, security, and cleanliness let you know whether or not each campground is the one you seek at any particular time. In addition, each site entry has complete contact and registration information, operating hours, and a list of restrictions. Directions to the site come complete with GPS coordinates to put you at the main gate.
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
Spectacular sunrises over shimmering waters
Beauty: 4 stars
Privacy: 3 stars
Spaciousness: 3 stars
Quiet: 4 stars
Security: 5 stars
Cleanliness: 4 stars
ADDRESS: 1001 County Road 393, Lanett, AL 36863
OPERATED BY: US Army Corps of Engineers
CONTACT: 334-499-2404; reservations 877-444-6777; tinyurl.com/amitycamp
SITE AMENITIES: Gravel pad, picnic table, grill, fire ring, lantern post, water, power
ASSIGNMENT: First-come, first-serve or by reservation
REGISTRATION: At entry gate or by reservation
FACILITIES: Flush toilets, hot showers, laundry, playground, lake swimming, fishing, fish-cleaning station, basketball court, volleyball court
PARKING: At each site; additional parking inside Mill Run, River Forest, and Pine Bluff Loops across from campsites
FEE: Improved, $24; primitive, $16
PETS: On leash only; not allowed in beach areas, playgrounds, or restrooms
FIRES: In fire ring or grill only; use only deadfall
OTHER: Quiet hours 10 p.m.-6 a.m.; 8 people/site; must obtain pass and display in windshield before entering; gate locked 10 p.m.-7 a.m.; 14-day stay limit
Deep within the mixed oak-and-pine forests and fertile rolling farmlands of southeast Alabama, on the banks of the Chattahoochee River directly on the Georgia state line, you’ll find yet another one of the state’s amazing US Army Corps of Engineers sites, Amity Campground.
The Chattahoochee River begins its journey to the Gulf of Mexico in the Blue Ridge Mountains of north Georgia. The river finally reaches Alabama here at West Point Lake and forms the border between the two states the remainder of its journey south. Amity Campground, on the southern end of the lake, is the northernmost Corps of Engineers campground on the Alabama side of the river.
Like Walter F. George and George W. Andrews Lakes farther south, West Point Lake was created by impounding the river. In 1962 Congress directed the Corps of Engineers to build West Point Dam to control flooding, provide a navigable water route to the gulf, develop and encourage wildlife and fish habitats, and provide hydroelectric power to the region. The dam is 7,250 feet long and creates a lake with a surface area of 25,900 acres and a shoreline of 525 miles. The power plant here generates enough electricity each year to run 24,000 homes. The dam was closed to tourists immediately after the attacks of 9/11 but has recently reopened. Tours must be scheduled in advance and have a minimum of 10 people. Contact West Point Dam at 706-645-2937 for more information.
As for the campground, the bulk of it juts into the lake, offering spectacular sunrises over the shimmering waters. This is a birding paradise, with many rare and beautiful species calling the lake, and campground, home. It is not uncommon to see an eagle or osprey soaring high overhead or to catch a glimpse of the rare great cormorants. Other birds you may see include king rails, greater white-fronted geese, gulls, purple gallinules, and, in the winter, several thousand species of migratory birds.
Once again, Amity Campground and the surrounding lake are an angler’s dream, especially if you’re a bass fisher. Largemouth and spotted bass are the main catches, but you can also try your hand at catfish, crappie, and bream. There are two cement boat ramps for you to launch from, along with plenty of room for bank fishing. And don’t forget to bring along that Alabama freshwater-fishing license.
There is no shortage of activities. Besides fishing, the campground has a playground and basketball, tennis, and volleyball courts.
You’ll find two nice hiking trails here as well. One is a 0.5-mile interpretive trail (be sure to pick up a booklet from the park attendant, so you can identify trees and wildlife), and the other is a 0.4-mile boardwalk to a beaver pond, where you will see waterfowl and other wildlife atop the observation platform.
Of the 96 sites at Amity, numbers 63–73 are tent-only with a gravel pad and fire ring. Here you will find some of the most beautiful views of the lake on sites 65–73. All others are improved with electricity, water, a fire ring, grill, a picnic table, and lantern post. The tent sites are compact crushed gravel pads. Many are waterfront, but if you can get them, shoot for numbers 37–62. These sit on a peninsula that juts into the lake and have wonderful views and cool lake breezes.
Clean and spacious restrooms, along with two bathhouses, each large enough for the number of campers, are scattered throughout the campgrounds. The men’s and women’s section have two hot showers that are handicap-accessible, and the facilities are heated. Plus, the bathhouses are cleaned twice daily.
And as we have come to expect at Corps of Engineers campsites, security is excellent with a locking gate after-hours, park attendant station, and camp hosts who live next to the gate.
Make a note about the time zone difference here. While most of Alabama is in the Central Time Zone, several towns bordering Georgia, including Lanett, use Eastern Time.
From Lanett travel north 1 mile on South State Line Road. The road turns into County Road 212. Continue traveling an additional 6.1 miles and turn right onto CR 393. The park entrance will be to the right.
GPS COORDINATES N32° 58.693' W85° 13.272'
Table of ContentsOverview Map
Alabama Map Key
- Amity Campground
- Brierfield Ironworks Historical State Park
- Cheaha State Park
- Coleman Lake Recreation Area
- Deerlick Creek Campground
- Lake Chinnabee Recreation Area
- Moundville Archaeological Park
- Oak Mountain State Park
- Payne Lake Recreation Area
- Pine Glen Campground
- Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park
- Buck’s Pocket State Park
- Cane Creek Canyon Nature Preserve
- Cathedral Caverns State Park
- Clear Creek Recreation Area
- Corinth Recreation Area
- DeSoto State Park
- Dismals Canyon Conservancy
- Elliott Branch Campground
- Joe Wheeler State Park
- Lake Guntersville State Park
- Mallard Creek Campground
- McFarland Park
- Monte Sano State Park
- Noccalula Falls Campground
- Rickwood Caverns State Park
- Slick Rock Campground
- Wilson Dam-Lower Rockpile Campground
- Blue Springs State Park
- Bluff Creek Campground
- Chewacla State Park
- Chilatchee Creek Campground
- Fort Toulouse-Fort Jackson National Historic Park
- Frank Jackson State Park
- Gunter Hill Campground
- Hardridge Creek Campground
- Lakepoint Resort State Park
- Millers Ferry Campground
- Open Pond Recreation Area
- Prairie Creek Campground
- Six Mile Creek Campground
- White Oak Creek Campground
- Blakeley Historic State Park
- Chickasabogue Park
- Gulf State Park
- Isaac Creek Campground
- Little River State Forest
- Magnolia Branch Wildlife Reserve
- Meaher State Park
- Old St. Stephens Historic Park
APPENDIXES AND INDEX
Appendix A: Camping-Equipment Checklist
Appendix B: Sources of Information
About the Author