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Old 08-13-2009, 09:05 AM   #267
2003 19' Bambi
shawnee , Kansas
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Cool Another KOA experience

After our last very nice experience in Santa Fe, we tried a KOA in Ashville, NC. What a difference! At $45/night it was the most expensive rate of the trip but we took a chance. They wedged us into one of the only spots left in the medium-price row (between the tents and away from the big RV section). It was crowded with mostly pop-ups and many vehicles. The bathroom/shower facilities were small and marginal. While on a pretty hilly site, we didn't have the urge to walk around and socialize but rather hid in the Bambi. It was right next to the interstate, too. I'd avoid this one (Ashville West). There were probably much nicer campgrounds up the road in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

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Old 08-13-2009, 11:07 AM   #268
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Thumbs up Kingman AZ KOA

Been to this one before (couple winters ago) and it looked improved since then. It is not new but the public areas (restrooms, showers and pool) were well kept up and clean. Maybe less use in summer. Everything worked. I was really impressed that every site was raked and clean. No tracks in the sand from the previous resident. They also didn't give me any grief about my dripping gray tank (other posts have more details on that). I was really burnt from two days of almost straight driving so kicking back with with a cold one and the AC blasting, watching the D-Backs (beat the Mets!!!) was my prime directive. I felt their store did not nickle and dime me for the 25' coax cable I needed. Might have been cheaper than CW (not as cheap as monoprice of course). Kingman AZ is not really a garden spot or tourist destination in the summer but you can get a pizza delivered right to your Airstream door at the KOA and hang out with the German tourists in the renta-campers (they love KOAs).

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Old 08-13-2009, 11:28 AM   #269
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Thumbs up WaKeeney, KS

Hi all -

Decided to make the first KOA stop in many, many years here... Well kept and very courteous staff. Free hot pancake breakfast. Was a nice surprise since KOAs I remember as a kid were always hit-or-miss. (Spearfish, SD anyone?)

We'll be hitting a couple more in the next few weeks on a long outing so will add to the list then.

FWIW - the WaKeeney property is also for sale in the event anyone is interested.

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Old 08-13-2009, 12:10 PM   #270
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Cool KOA in Mt. Pleasant, SC

I stayed a full week at this location outside of Charleston and the facility was very nice. The staff were helpful, full hookups, and perfect for business travel plus a short drive to historic Charleston. I would give it a A rating. I have found KOA's to be variable in quality overall but there are some nice ones out there.
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Old 08-31-2009, 02:54 PM   #271
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Brigham City, UT - Neglected

Hi again all -

Since the SP was booked, we opted for an overnight here...

Unfortunately this one goes into the neglected column.

Sites are not well maintained and are literally spaced about 6 feet between units.

Too bad for such a pretty area

best -
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Old 08-31-2009, 03:10 PM   #272
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Canada KOA's

We've been to three in the past 2 months accross Canada and have to agree that they are VERY mixed. Serpent River KOA, Ontario isn't a KOA anymore and it shows. There are nicer places on the north shore of Lake Huron. 2nd KOA is Indian Head, Sask. - Nice park, fairly well kept - We've stayed at this one several times and would go back again. Not a lot to look at though as it is in the praries. Lastly was Calgary, Alta KOA. Not a KOA anymore either and it shows. Hated staying there as it was cramped, dirty and packed in like sardines.

I think that some parks get the KOA designation and then don't renew (but they are still listed on some websites and some KOA guide books) so they continue to get business without having to meet the standards. This is just my opinion though . . .

Used to always be able to count on a "nice" stay at any KOA but it looks like a little more searching is in order now to be be sure.

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Old 08-31-2009, 05:42 PM   #273
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Our friends just spent a couple nights in Crawfordsville In. and were very pleased with the facilities.
See our blog here on how two RV/AS rookies tackle a 1979 Sovereign resto!!

Just the photos.. (sometimes you don't need the blog, just a picture worth a thousand words..)

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Old 08-31-2009, 06:17 PM   #274
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KOA Daytona Beach FL on Speedway BLVD was very nice and the staff was awesome. No problems at all during 4th of July weekend.
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Old 09-01-2009, 08:52 AM   #275
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We try to dry camp or boondock when we can. Our priorities are to get as close to nature as we can when we camp and I'm thankful that the very best public campgrounds offer no hookups. The only time I'd ever want a site with hookups is to recharge the batteries in the middle of a long trip or to have AC when it's too hot. We stayed at a KOA for the first time this year near Carlsbad NM due to the heat. It wasn't neglected at all and served it's purpose as an oasis in the desert. A parking lot with hookups and a few amenities. The problem was that everything shut down at 8 pm, so when we returned from checking out the Caverns on a very hot day the pool was already closed. This was a huge disappointment to the kids. KOA's are priced much higher then many other private campgrounds with basic hookups, so with our being unable to use any of the amenities we felt cheated. Next time we have to have hook ups, a KOA will be our last resort.

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Old 09-01-2009, 10:24 AM   #276
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KOA in Alamosa Co. Nice.

We just stayed several days at the KOA in Alamosa Co. and it was nice. but I agree that several have been neglected over the years. I also notice many that were KOA campgrounds in the past are not any longer. Talking to some of the owners of different campgrounds around the U.S. it seems that owning a campground is not an easy or sure way to make money. They are expensive to purchase,require long hours of work day in and day out and it seems that most owners are just working to pay off their mortgage while taking a modest income each year. Their goal usually is to pay off the mortgage and sell for more than they paid for it then retire on that large lump sum of money. It's a long hard grind and often there is just not any money left at the end of the year to spend on Improvement.
I expect that the present economy will even make things worse over the next several years.
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Old 09-04-2009, 05:29 AM   #277
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Stayed at the KOA in DuBois (sp) WY.. A couple of years ago. It seemed pretty nice. I was tent camping from a motorcycle, so I did not need much space.. I was tired from a long day on the bike, I do remember the guy next to me chopping wood about 10' from my tent after 10:00 pm. I finally said something. Quiet hrs did not begin until 11, but he had to know he was keeping me awake..
The KOA seemed nice though..
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Old 09-04-2009, 06:50 AM   #278
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I would like to take advantage of this thread to post a 'thumbs=down' for a trailer park here in Altus Okla. . This one...I think called Horizon, looked good when we got there a year ago...but withen days it seems the owners were weaving us into their home problems which began when they announced they were moving (and I quote) 'their 'crack head daughter' in next door to us. Why? who knows, but we spent a miserable month. This owner family would have eight o-clock arguments and mudslinging contests for our entertainment. I now know what 'trailer park trash' stands for ha! But we will now always take that as a warning for what to expect sometimes.
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Old 09-07-2009, 07:04 AM   #279
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Okay folks. I've been thinking about this thread a lot since my parents recently took over managing a KOA campground.

First, there are far too many KOAs out there to make a general statement. Have you seen the book that has the list of KOA campgrounds? It's 8.5 by 11 and probably 50 pages. The map they have at the front desk showing KOAs in the US is even more convincing - there are a LOT of them throughout the country.

KOA does come through every so often and verifies that the campground meets some minimum level of clean. As an example, my mom was telling me that they pull the top of the washer off and verify it's clean under there, and if it isn't, it's a demerit against the campground. KOA also specifies the colors used on the buildings and the like, and wants employees/work campers to wear the bright yellow shirts while working (an idea I like - you know who you can ask if you need help).

Mom and dad love the online reservation system - they said that when they open the office in the morning, the reservations are on the computer and they don't have to do anything. Having used that system on a number of occasions I have to say it's pretty nice for the end-user, too.

KOAs aren't allowed to give other discounts (AAA, Good Sam, etc.) - the KOA card only. There is an option for managers to give discounts for groups or whatever, though.

KOAs might be slightly more expensive than other campgrounds, because KOA takes part of their revenue. On the other hand, I don't think the prices at my parents' campground are out of line.

I'm not advocating for or against KOAs in general. I'm just pointing out that there are too many factors to answer the original question of this thread, and trying to give some info on both sides of the issue.

On a more personal experience note, I can't think of a KOA that I've hated, but I can think of several non-KOAs that I hated. I may not have loved the KOAs; they might not have been the best campground ever, but I've never had a "I'm never coming back here" complaint about one either.
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Old 09-07-2009, 08:07 AM   #280
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I stayed at the KOA in Cheyenne WY on a weekend for Frontier Days this year. It was very clean and nice, though I was not a big fan of the location (near 80 and very few trees around). I was much more impressed after riding the shuttle back when we stopped at two other campgrounds (I think one was a Jolly Rogers). They were so crowded that litterally people's slideouts overlapped! One had a big power outage for a couple hours, probably from overloading their system. The KOA did not sell more than the number of spaces.

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