Big Bend Campground

3.86 out of 5
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Campground Description

Big Bend is located in the Smoke Hole Canyon next to the South Branch of the Potomac River at the end of County Route 2.
Contact: US Forest Service (
Posted by: Jeff Barber on December 14, 2005


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Campground Activities

Hiking: There are 30 miles of maintained trails nearby and a vast backcountry to explore without trails. A one mile loop trail is available at the campground.Boating, canoeing and kayaking are available but boating opportunities are limited to spring during periods of high water.Fishing: Fishing is allowed in the South Branch of the Potomac River. A valid West Virginia State Fishing License is required, along with a National Forest stamp and a trout stamp. Please contact the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources for more information on fishing and hunting licensing requirements.

Campground Amenities

Each sites has a picnic table, tent pad, lantern holder, and fire ring. Water, a dump station and flush toilets are available.

Reservation info

Click here for reservations and availability.

Questions   [ask a question]


Q: the people that give glenn and ginnie good reviews are either family or just havn't gone to this campground that much, i use to be one that would give good marks to them but no longer, me and my wife went there 4 to 5 times a year but no longer and for some of the same reasons other people have posted, and i dearly loved this place i went to this place when it was still down by the store before flood of 85 took it out, back then you had park rangers, no assholes -Michael Ridenour

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Reviews of Big Bend Campground

Reviewed by CanoeCamper on May 26, 2015

(0 out of 0 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
We base our 2 day float to Petersburg on the SF of The South Branch of the Potomac here. Have done so since 2002. It is a wonderful campground... Scenic, isolated, lots of things to do... Float, Fish, Hike or just hang out. When the current hosts took over several years ago, a new attitude came with them... It improved things dramatically... It was kinda rowdy before Glen and his wife came along. If you make too much noise after 10, you will hear about it, wash your dishes at the common water spigot, yep, if you get caught, you will be scolded... So... Be good neighbors, follow the rules, let the occasional bitchiness roll off your back, and you will have a great stay... If you get all upset because someone looks at you a little cross eyed if you violate the rules... Then find another campground, but I promise you, it won't be as nice.
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Reviewed by Lisa Alt Crites on May 25, 2015

(0 out of 0 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
We have stayed here for years. Started off with tents. Now have a travel trailer we have been coming here for 7 years of more. Always have a great time.
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Reviewed by Anse on October 15, 2014

(1 out of 1 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
This is definitely one of the best campgrounds in the region. I half suspect bad reviewers of leaving negative feedback just so they can keep it to themselves. Beautiful river and mountains, great hiking, swimming, and tubing. Sites are wooded and private. I really appreciate the safe and friendly atmosphere now that I'm camping with young children. We look forward to this campground all year, and always enjoy our stay!
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Reviewed by PACAMPER on October 14, 2014

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The campground hosts make this place! Anyone who says different is someone you and your family probably don't want to camp next to. This is a very remote location and used to be absolutely lawless until Glenn and Ginnie put in a little structure to make it enjoyable for all. If you want to sing kumbaya all night, get the LED out or run an AC from your RV this is not for you. If you are the type of person that thinks its ok to have your dog barreling through other peoples campsites aren't going to like it. If you want to build a bonfire and throw bud light cans all over while you party into the night ...again, not for you. This is easily the best kept camping secret on the East Coast because the hosts make it great for everybody. They are the reason we come back year after year.
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Reviewed by MikeD. on May 27, 2014

(9 out of 11 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
This campground used to be my families favorite. Nice camp sites and a beautiful river to enjoy. Unfortunately things have changed. The camp hosts for some reason think they own the place and don't realize that they are there to maintain it and most importantly to provide a friendly atmosphere for the paying guests with their families to enjoy. The last few times my family has been there we have been disrespected and just downright treated very rudely. For some reason the lady host "Ginnie" always has something inhospitable to say or something to reprimand you for, even before you have a chance to step out of your car. If you want peace and quiet, that's a crap shoot. How can you enjoy nature with a leaf blower and a John Deere tractor running all day long when it doesn't even need to be. Especially a leaf blower, are you kidding me? I understand keeping the place looking nice but hey, you're in the middle of the woods. Who wants to sit and listen to that while trying to relax and enjoy nature? I'm pretty sure that's why people go camping, to get some peace and quiet and away from the leaf blowers and lawnmowers. On top of all this we have pulled into the campground to be greeted by the intoxicated camp host "Ginnie" on multiple occasions. Yea, real nice, slurred speech and everything else. It is now hard for myself and family to even want to go back there. I kept giving them another chance because we love the place so much but every time we return we just get disgusted with having to deal with the hosts treating everyone with disrespect. I understand following the rules but just to have someone riding around nit-picking your every move while you are on vacation is ridiculous. I am hoping that someone else will take over the job as hosts in the near future so we can return and enjoy ourselves as we have in the years past, without having the drunken camp host watching your every move just waiting for something to say. I will be contacting the U.S. Forest Service to further investigate this situation and see what changes can be made.
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Response by Tony Lee on October 15, 2014

(1 out of 2 members found this response useful.)
Your review and accusations are unfounded and false. I sure hope nobody takes this seriously. Genn and Ginny are good people providing a safe and clean campsite for all. It is a community, not your personal section of the forest.
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Reviewed by carolinablues71 on August 11, 2011

(2 out of 3 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
I simply can NOT believe the bad reviews regarding the hosts here! The are the friendliest hosts of any campground we have ever stayed at. We always invite them for dinner at our camp at least 1 night when we stay. We have stayed there 4 times I think. NICE place.
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Reviewed by Spooky on August 2, 2011

(3 out of 4 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
It's a fun quiet place. Camp sites stay cool and are well maintained. I have never had a problem with the management and found them friendly and helpful as long as you follow the rules posted. its my favorite camping spot around. My children and I look forward to going back.
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Reviewed by rubybaby on August 1, 2011

(6 out of 8 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
I have been staying here for years, and it is by far the most peaceful, relaxing, beautiful area I've ever been to. Campground is very clean and well maintained, however.... The husband and wife who manage Big Bend are rude, mean, and nasty!! They take a beautiful place and turn it into hell!! The woman is a nazi on a golfcart. And it only gets worse when they get drunk and wanna be mean and nasty to the campers. My daughters were drawing with sidewalk chalk and she came flying up and her golfcart and told em they couldn't do that. When I asked her why she yelled get some water and clean that mess up!!! Big Bend is more like a prison than a campground... You constantly have to watch your back, and no matter what you are gonna get bitched at for something by management!! I'm very sad to say my family has put up with them for 7 yrs now, and I cannot bring myself to go back until they are gone.....
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Response by Spooky on August 2, 2011

(3 out of 8 members found this response useful.)
Id have to say they probably put up with you for 7 years
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Reviewed by small farm on July 14, 2011

(7 out of 8 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
The campground was clean - sites were nicely tree covered. Tubing was difficult due to sharp rocks and low water. Nice "beach" area for swimming in the river. Management was friendly when we pulled in, but became untolerable of campers not far into stay. When one of the group went to use the bathroom after it had been cleaned - he was asked if he was going to use the bathroom and then with a not nice kind of tone stated "I just cleaned those". Quiet time began at 10:00 pm and our group was asked to be quiet at 9:00 pm - this mind you, when ONE person was singing. Management also stopped a very young child on a bike and was told to slow it down you here...when the child (not from our group) was literally gliding on the road in front of camp areas. I will repeat, the campground was nice, but will not return due to the management.
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Response by rubybaby on August 1, 2011

(3 out of 6 members found this response useful.)
You are so right about management!!! They are horrible, nasty people!
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Reviewed by Sacred Dances on July 14, 2011

(4 out of 5 members found this review useful.) Reply to Review
This is a nice clean place, the camp spots are not completely private but not right on top of your neighbors. Unfortunately it was lacking in friendliness. We were scolded for going the right way in a 2 lane road, scolded for singing, scolded for washing a dish, and scolded for having 3 cars parked at 1 campsite for dinner, completely out of the way of everyone. Things that could have been said nicely were said very rudely and loudly. The river is a bit shallow for tubing FYI. Also want to add that the area to put your tent on was very hard GRAVEL. Who wants to put a tent on gravel???!!!
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Response by rubybaby on August 1, 2011

(3 out of 5 members found this response useful.)
Yes you get scolded for everything you do!! From going to the bathroom, to how you cook on your firepit. It's non stop too! Makes you just wanna pack up and leave
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Camping Recommendations

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Big Bend Campground 3.86 out of 5 based on 10 ratings. 10 user reviews.

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