Big Bend Campground (WV) review

Solitude/privacy: 4
Environment & Nature: 5
Available Activities: 5
Staff & Park Officials: 5
Accessibility: 3

This campground is located

by the entrance of the park

on the Potomac River in Smoke Hole Canyon.  It’s a bit of a tricky place to get to but once you do you won’t want to leave. They offer fishing, hunting, kayaking, water tubing, and some trails to be tackled. We got there at 2 o’clock in the morning, exhausted from our travels; the camp hosts were already asleep and we didn’t want to disturb them.  We took a ride around the first level of the campground and the loop was filled with RVs & Mobile Homes which made me wonder if we were at the right place.  Once we exited the loop we found out there was a road going up to other levels, so we took it and grabbed one of the first spots that were available.  We quickly set up and went to sleep.  In the morning we heard an ATV pull up to our tent and a voice of a woman emerged asking us if we were awake.  It was the camp host.  She was very sweet and polite, thanked us for not waking her in the middle of the night and told us the amount due for the spot per night ($18).


The check out time was 1pm.

It gave us plenty of time to enjoy the beautiful nature.  Smoke Hole Canyon is connected to the George Washington National Forest so the scenery is incredible.  The campsites were not on top of each other (which made me happy, even though it was Tuesday and no one else was camping out near us).  Each site was connected to the main camp road with driveways and separated with thick bush and trees.  If we had any neighbors, we would not see them nor probably hear them that much.

Although we were staying there

only for a few hours and since it was pre-season time, we did not get a chance to do any of the activities, but judging by the environment, activities like fishing or kayaking would have been incredible.

Getting to the park, however, was a tricky situation.  The first half of the road was very curvy and mountainous (a lot of up and downs)… kind of made me sick   The second half was a lot worse – it was gravel road (about 5 miles).  Gravel is not necessarily bad but it was so bumpy, I couldn’t do more than 12 mph and in some spots 5 mph seemed too fast.  There were parts where I feared for my 10 year old car.  On the way back, we were going during the day and the nature was beautiful.  Even though it was such a bumpy road, it was totally worth it.


  1. Like your review.
    We try to go for several days each summer. Now that our children are grown & out on their own, my husband & I pack up our tent and iron skillets and off to Big Bend we go. We LOVE it! I love not having close neighbors, we love fishing and tubing and most of all the gorgeous view and that peaceful stillness. Every year the hosts (husband & wife but I can’t think of their names) are fantastic. We live on the western side of WV and we’re getting ready to go back next week…very excited!
    Glad you enjoyed our state even if it was only for a day or two.

    1. I wish I lived closer. I’d go to this campground very often. The nature overall in WV and VA is breathtaking.

    2. I think most of West Virginia is nice to look at , Big Bend must be great place to camp. I sounds like you go often.
      Can You tell me if you remember seeing an graveyard ? I is marked on the map as being in the bend.
      Can you let me know at
      I had a camp on the South Branch near Springfield,WV Years ago.

      1. Hi big brother Joe. Did you ever get a reply? are you still working on our ancestry?If you drive to camp there-we can share a spot!

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