Campsites at stake parks filling up fast for Fourth of July

Jun 15 2012 - 8:32pm

OGDEN -- With the Fourth of July extended holiday weekend only a few weeks away, state park campsites throughout the Top of Utah are filling up faster than wading pools.

Antelope Island, Rockport and Willard Bay are a few of the state parks with campsites available.

But state park officials say they are going "very fast."

Hyrum Lake State Park in the Logan area is already reporting no campsites available for the July 4-8 time frame, parks officials said.

The fact that July 4 falls on a Wednesday may be stretching out the celebration when it comes to camping, taking in both the June 29-July 1 weekend before the holiday, and the July 7-8 weekend following it, Antelope Island State Park Manager Jeremy Shaw said.

But Shaw is anticipating crowds over both sets of dates.

"We would anticipate being full," he said of the island state park.

In addition to the designated campsites available, the island does offer some primitive overflow camping, he said.

But according to Emily DeBois-Hearndon, Utah State Parks and Recreation reservations manager, as of Friday there were only two designated campsites still available at Antelope Island over the July 4-8 weekend.

Having worked at a few different state parks, Shaw said his experience has been for campsites to fill over the July 4th holiday. Based on the demand placed on the 45 parks in the state system, he said, those without reservations may have a difficult time finding a campsite days prior to or days immediately following the holiday.

State reservation numbers for July 4-8 confirm Shaw's hunch.

Of the 97 campsites available at Willard Bay State Park, 26 sites remained available as of Friday, DeBois-Hearndon said.

East Canyon State Park has 12 of its 55 campsites available, while Rockport State Park has 45 of its 106 campsites available.

The Jordanelle-Rock Cliff Area has six of 51 campsites available.

Utah State Parks spokeswoman Deena Loyola said it is not unusual to see state park campsites go this quickly.

What generally occurs is half of the campers plan way ahead in making reservations, with those people this year more than likely taking the campsite for the entire July 4-8 span. The remaining campers, she said, scramble at the last minute for a site.

This time of year, campsite reservations always go "very fast," Loyola said. "The Fourth of July and July 24th are two of our biggest holidays."

Interested?

For reservations or more information about state park campsites, call 800-322-3770. Reservations can also be made online at http://www.stateparks.utah.gov/

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