Tîms Ford SP

Discussion in 'Tennessee' started by Boroviewfarm, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. Boroviewfarm

    Boroviewfarm Farmer marries veterinarian; now raises kids.

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    Tims Ford State Park

    As you may or may not know about my reviews, I am writing from the point of view of a father traveling with a wife and three kids. Although I may not always camp with all of them, I certainly judge things based on how enjoyable it would be to camp at the park with all of them.
    Our trip to Tims Ford was our first entire-family outing since the birth of our youngest son six months prior. The catalyst for this particular trip was a mini family reunion. The total number in our group was 12, although we did not all stay at the campground. We made our reservations via the brand new (at the time) online reservation system that TN State Parks are using now. I have mixed opinions about the online reservation system, but overall I am very pleased with it.
    Camp Site:
    We stayed at the campground inside the main park area. They have another campground called "Fairview" that is several miles away fromthe main entrance to Tims Ford.
    Based upon the recommendation of a friend, we reserved camp site 39. This proved to be a great spot. When we return, we will make every effort to stay at sites 35, 37, or 39. These sites are on the outside of the campground loop and are the most level of the outside loop sites. The rest of the outer loop sites have a pretty steep drop off from the camper pad to the fire pit, tent pad, and picnic table. These drop-offs pose a particular falling hazard for our two year old daughter. These sites are also very close to the paths from the CG down to the paved bike trail which was a big plus for our older son. Our site was level and the water and electric was convenient. We had to bring two cars on this trip, and did have some trouble getting both cars to fit in our allotted space. All campsites are fairly close to one of the two bathhouses. There is a playground in the middle of the CG that is fairly new and appropriate for ages 2 and up. The CG loop was easy for the kids to bike around. Overall rating 4 out of 5
    Bathhouses
    Bathhouse #1 was ok. This one is handicap accessible and in usable order. This bathhouse is close to the larger camper sites, and I believe it is simply used less.
    Bathhouse #2 was awful. I don't think there has been any updates to this facility since the 70's based upon the graffiti that is in the stalls! The urinal overflowed each time it was flushed and the shower was out-of-order for most of our visit :( There was only one shower in the bathhouses per side, so it sees its fair share of use I am sure. Overall rating 1 out of 5.
    Activities
    This was the shining part of our trip to Tims Ford SP. First, Ranger Phil did an outstanding job with his interpretive programs for the kids. My kids' favorite was the Owl Walk that we went on at night. We weren't able to see any owls, but they had fun trying to call them in!
    We enjoyed our time at the big swimming pool at the park. My son was happy to have both a regular and high-dive board to jump off. Besides the diving area, the rest of the olympic sized pool ranged from 3-4 feet. There was also a kiddie pool area for the younger kids. The lifeguards were friendly as well. With our camper discount it was only $2 per person!
    Tims Ford offers the best biking trails of any of the parks we have visited on our State Park Tour so far. There are many miles of paved trails that were perfect for taking our kids along. There are even more trails for those interested in mountain biking too.
    If you like to fish, there are many options here too. You can rent boats at the marina, or bring your own. There are also nice bank-fishing opportunities for the kids. Overall rating of activities 5 of 5.
    Summary
    Overall, we had a very enjoyable six-night stay at Tims Ford State Park. The only thing that brought our enjoyment down was the horrible condition of the bathhouses at our campground. If you are looking for a place with multiple options for kids' and adult activities, then you need to make sure to visit; just don't forget your shower shoes!
     
  2. hometownhiker

    hometownhiker Active Member

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    I'm happy to report that we camped at the main campground this summer at Timms Ford, and they had just opened a brand new, beautiful, bath house. So, it seems that 5 years after this review was posted the state got around to fixing the problem. We had a fun and relaxing time there and would happily return for another visit.
     
    megcabra likes this.
  3. Nani2

    Nani2 Active Member

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    Did you have to detour around the bridge and how far was it?
     
  4. hometownhiker

    hometownhiker Active Member

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    No, the bridge was wide enough for a pop-up to go through, so no detour was needed.
     
  5. nineoaks2004

    nineoaks2004 Every meal is a picnic and every Day is a holiday

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    Sounds like ya'll had a great adventure, Camping gets in the blood. Thanks for the trip log.
    Good Luck and Happy Camping
     
  6. Nani2

    Nani2 Active Member

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    Another advantage to a popup. We went to Lake Guntersville in Alabama instead and really liked it. Tim's Ford is close so we'll make it there sometime. Thanks for the info.
     
    hometownhiker likes this.
  7. Tennessee Tom

    Tennessee Tom Member

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  8. Tennessee Tom

    Tennessee Tom Member

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    I am sure you have heard that Tims Ford now has two new restrooms and showers. Were there about two weeks ago . Great improvement.
     
  9. 1380ken

    1380ken Well-Known Member

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    Do you really have to pay to go in the pool? That would be a no go for me.
     

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