Sugarmama3
Does anyone have a preference between commercial campgrounds or State Parks?  Safety, size of sites, noise, prices, etc.  First big trip with my 177 SE. Two weeks round trip from FL to IA.  Any suggestions will be appreciated!  Thanks
Quote 0
the5reeds
We always prefer regional, state, and national campgrounds over private ones, mostly because we find that they tend to be larger sites, quieter, more private, spread out and more picturesque than private campgrounds - not always, but usually. Our experience is that usually, national forest and park campgrounds are non-hookup. A great resource for looking at campground reviews (both private and non) is http://www.rvparkreviews.com/. Sorry I don't have any specific campground recommendations in your area other than Fort Wilderness Disney World and St. Andrews which we loved. 
Quote 0
retro195man
That's a tough decision. I think price is the most popular motivator for staying in State Parks. I've been to some where they could have been cleaner and others that were clean. Same with private campgrounds...
The best guide is reviews. the more reviews the better. So ahead of time it makes sense to figure out where you are going. Plan your route. Don't pick the lone campground, because you could always go to the other camp.
That is what I do and it worked for me. This may not be best for you.
Quote 0
kswalsh
In Iowa, be sure to look at the Corps of Engineers cmpgrounds. In my opinion, they're much better than the state parks.
Kristi
2017 177SE Seafoam
Quote 0
Chaplain Kent
There was a time I would be singing the praises of our Wisconsin State parks but now I advise you stay away. My wife and I volunteered for more than twenty years as a campground host in Wisconsin. Sadly we watched the parks deteriorate under draconian austerity policies to the point the are a mere shadow of what they used to be. We stopped hosting when our own safety became an issue. Drastic staff cuts, our park went from six rangers down to two, have stopped regular patrols and when the cats away the mice do play. I agree with the Corp of Engineer parks and there are also many fine county parks to camp. The state of Wisconsin no longer welcomes you to their state parks.
Quote 0
fireblot
In Florida, we really like Ft. Clinch in Fernandina and Anastasia State Park in St. Augustine. As mentioned in other posts State Parks tend to have bigger sites, more privacy, more "nature", fewer hookups and cheaper prices. The restrooms and showers seem to be used harder and cleaned less frequently. Commercial campgrounds run the gamut from stellar to sleazy..... even dangerous. Retro195man is right on about reading reviews. Read 'em! They really help you to make a choice. 

Having said the above, we are on a three week trip from Florida to Arizona (Grand Canyon) and every day we stress over booking a site for the next day, and generally end up grabbing whatever is available and can be booked by cell phone. In the first week, we have hit a State Park, a trailer park, a KOA, a mom and pop park, a senior's park, etc.  Surprisingly, all have been acceptable, some even stellar and we are having a lot of fun. Hook up and go!  
Quote 0
RubySue
We like a mix - another good option is city / county - wasn't sure about it when I found the first one, but we've had good experiences at: city-owned - RiversEnd on Tybee Island, GA (Savannah), and heard good things about St James Island (county-owned outside Charleston) - headed there in Sept.

agree on commercial vary greatly - stayed in one outside Knoxville, that was 80% permanent residents - with tremendous amounts of collected junk in their sites.  Fortunately, was only 2 nights & we were out of there. 'Seasonal' is now a red flag for us.
Quote 0
retro195man
Some areas are depressed. You have to use some tools to figure out whether to skip an area or not. 
I use trulia, and the crime tab to see value of area and crime in that area. Great tool. 
This helps to get an idea. 
Also Google Earth. You can zoom in on the grounds and actually see if the sites for perms are junk or nice. 
For instance, roundup lake has seasonal. But the TTs are nice and the RVs  too. Some have sunk money into their lot. 
Just do your homework. It will pay off. 
Quote 0
retro195man
Look for entertainment too. Some campgrounds have something going on usually Saturday nights. If they do, that tells you a little something also. 
This usually tells me management wants happy campers! 
Quote 0
Lou Serrano
Great question. I myself, prefer state campgrounds here in NY versus private campgrounds. In my experiences, the private campgrounds tend to cater more to seasonal "campers" rather than transient short stay. I say "campers" because most are 10-15 year old trailers with wooden porches, outdoor refrigerators, sheds and acres of lawn furniture, plastic toys, towels, and last weeks beer pong casualties strewn around. We had the unfortunate pleasure of staying at one private campground where the neighbor to our left apparently was caught sleeping with the neighbor three sites down to our right, and the drunk Real Housewives of the Campground decide to debut, live before a studio audience (us), at 11PM. Just bad experiences in general.

Additionally, We pay the taxes in NY and would like to see where some (but not enough) of my tax dollars are going. Most sites, generally speaking, are only water/electric. Sites with sewer are difficult to find due to infrastructure constraints. State owned campgrounds in the Adirondack and Catskill Preserves do not offer any kind of hook up, so boon-docking is your only option. We have always boon-docked, so we are used to preserving water and electric. We have a 2000 watt Honda Inverter that we use to re-charge the on board battery. 
Quote 0
Sugarmama3
Thanks everyone,great information for my upcoming trip.  I'll let yo know how things go. I'm going to try both.
Quote 0