By Darryl Alder
Oct 21, 2017

Where to Go Camping: Hailstone Campground at Jordanelle State Park

Last weekend I went camping with Troop 592. I am their committee chairman and the Scoutmaster needed me to make his leadership 2-deep, but this was no inconvenience.

Setting up camp by car light

I love camping and I wanted to share this location with our readers any way. The only drawback was the weather report—it predicted snow, but it was 62°F and sunny when we left, so no matter.

We stayed at the Hailstone Campground, which part of Jordanelle State Park. Unfortunately we got off late and that meant setting up camp in the dark. There was only one marked tent site so we had to figure out where to put the adult tent and good thing too, we had snow during the night (for that adventure read “Wind, Fire and God“). Also our mistake, come prepared to buy a second tent site if for the adults since all tents must be on tent pads—our bad.

Each campsite had an aluminum picnic table on a concrete pad with fire ring

The campground, which is on the west side of the reservoir, is a large and nicely developed facility open year round. The place is loaded with amenities like flush toilets and showers, RV and trailer hook-ups, two cabins at the water’s edge, a day-use area and with its boat launches, a favorite location of boaters and RV campers. Many of the campsites offer water and electric hook-ups.

However, the 68 tent campsites are very near each other, which means Scouts will need to keep it quiet after hours. It also means you will need two close campsites, since all tents must be on tent pads. There is also one large group site that holds 75.

Individual campsites are available for reservation on a four-month rolling basis. For example, on January 10 individual sites are available for reservation through May 10. Group sites are available for reservation on an 11-month rolling basis. You can book a maximum of 13 days beyond the last date of the reservation window.  You can make reservations online or call their Reservation Call Center at 800-322-3770 between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. (Mountain Time) Monday through Friday.

Directions to the Campground

From Salt Lake: Take Interstate 80 east to the Heber Junction, follow south on Highway 40 to the Mayflower Exit. Exit number 8 

From Provo: Take Provo Canyon (Hwy 189) to Highway 40 to Mayflower Exit.

Because the area has only a few trees and is close to the road, noise from Highway 189 is pretty steady. However, the panoramic views and direct access to the reservoir, more than compensate for the racket. In fact, our Scouts were up by 8 am in spite of snow, ready to fish, so the noise had not bothered them

We brought kayaks with us, since we had been working on the Paddle Sports Program Feature (see Program Features Volume 1). But, the Scouts couldn’t wait—the lake was so close it was a fisherman’s siren call. So off they went without breakfast and boats. 

Swedish Torch

The campsites have no wood, but Matt, our Scoutmaster had brought plenty. We both stayed back at the campsite to warm ourselves by the fire and to make some breakfast. Pancakes, bacon, and eggs with syrup; there are few things so good on a brisk fall morning. Unfortunately, we left the cocoa mix at home. 

While we were waiting for the Scouts to come back. I split a log into six parts. I thought that was the right way to make a Swedish Torch. For some time, since I saw him demonstrate it, I had wanted to try Creek Stewart’s Swedish Torch to cook on but, I should have watched this video first to get it right:

It warmed us great, but ours was too uneven to cook on. Still, this is a cool concept you should try. Anyway, with only two fish bites in 90 minutes and a brisk wind blowing, the Scouts broke camp and we were on our way home by noon, saying goodbye to one of the nicest public campgrounds I have ever camped in. 

 

Author:Darryl Alder |  Retired ProScouter and BSA Blogger, serves as Troop 592 Committee Chair in Provo, Ut

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