Erving State Forest
Address: 122 Long Pond Rd., Warwick MA 01378
Phone: 978 544-7745
Time from Boston: 1 hour, 40 minutes (78 miles)
Camping at Erving State Forest
Most Boston area campgrounds aren’t exactly hotbeds for wildlife activity, but one of the parks with the widest range of animals is Erving State Forest in north central Massachusetts.
The forest itself is home to black bear, deer, coyote, fox, porcupine, squirrel, and raccoon, so those who like to hike and have patience may be able to do some mammal-spotting. Bring your binoculars and cameras!
In addition, the main feature of this campground is the mile-long Laurel Lake, where turtles, newts, frogs, and beaver can be found. The lake features pickerel, perch, trout, bass, blue gill, eel, and more. Fishing is permitted, so anglers will want to come prepared.
The lake has a beach with summer swimming and boating available from late May through Labor Day. There are plenty of picnic tables and pavilions surrounding the lake, making it a popular day-use destination.
Oh yes, and then there are the campgrounds. That’s what you’re here for, right? As shown on the Erving Forest campground map, this park only has 29 campsites, so it’s rather small as campgrounds go. Two of the sites are wheelchair accessible.
All of the campsites are within walking distance of the lake, the forest, and the shower building. Because of the limited availability, you may want to reserve your site in advance.
Camping at Erving costs the typical state camping rates for inland campgrounds: $12 for residents, and $14 for out of state residents.
The park has eight miles of roads and trails, including horseback riding and mountain biking trails. Guests report that the campground is generally clean and organized, and the lake is typically clear.
Images: Creative Commons user rusty_clark