Shenango River Lake Campground, Transfer, PA

Shenango River Lake
A view of Shenango River Lake from near one of the campsites in the Old Duck Loop… I think.

CAMPGROUND NAME: Shenango River Lake Campground within the Shenango Recreation Area

LOCATION: Transfer, PA. Note that the address giving of at 2442 Kelly Road won’t get you anywhere near the campground using Google Maps.
KIND: Army Corps of Engineers (ACE)
RATES: 2015, $19 – $24 for single sites (see rate schedule in sidebar)
STAY LIMIT: 14 days, longer with permission
PHONE: 724-646-1115 (Entrance station. See inset for other numbers.)
GPS: These should put you at the entrance station, N 41.29720, W 80.431500

Charlene at Shenango River Lake
Charlene, my RV, settled into our campsite, #89, at Shenango River Lake. I only needed to raise one wheel a little in order to get level. Some other sites have more tilt.

ACCESS: Roads to and within the campground are paved. It’s a little bumpy in places within the campground. It appears that there are three handicap accessible sites.
SITES: 330
PULL THRU: A quick search on
BACK-IN: yes
MAXIMUM RIG SIZE: Most sites listed on ReserveAmerica show lengths in the 50′-60′ ranges but some were larger.
LEVELNESS: Some sites more so than others. It’s not an extremely tilty place so I think leveling won’t be too much of an issue in many sites.
SHADE: Yes, some sites more than others. Some sites are open, some well shaded.
SPACING: I’d say from close to moderate, even generous depending upon the site.
TENT PADS: I did’t notice
PETS: On leash

Shenango River Lake Campground Lakeside Sites
A few of the lakeside campsites at Shenango River Lake Campground. This loop had no electricity and few campers. The loop I was had electrical hookups and was very close to full. I was there during the week in late August.

HOOKUPS: Electricity only and only in some sites. See inset.
ELECTRICAL QUALITY: 122 volts, 60 Hz, no faults (As indicated by my Progressive Industries Power Management System, Model EMS-PT30C.)

AT&T iPhone 5s without Wilson Mobile 4G booster:
2 bars, LTE
Download speed: 7,80 Mbps
Upload speed: 2.67 Mbps

AT&T iPhone 5s with Wilson Mobile 4G booster:
No need to use booster

Verizon iPad Air without Wilson Mobile 4G booster:
4 bars, LTE
Signal strength: %, dBm
Download speed: 10.49 Mbps
Upload speed: 4.20 Mbps

Verizon iPad Air with Wilson Mobile 4G booster:
No need to use booster

Shenango River Lake Campground
In late August, mid-week, many of the non-electric sites were vacant. Not so for the sites with electricity.

Over-the-air: My scan did not pick up any stations
Cable: No
WiFi: No

RESTROOM RATING: Fail. It was fine except for there were no hand dryers or paper towels. (I assign a Pass or Fail rating based on many considerations including: cleanliness, usability, hot water availability, hand soap availability, ease or difficulty it is to use the toilet paper, condition of fixtures, if using the restroom is a pleasant or unpleasant experience, etc.)
SOAP: Hand soap
SHOWER RATING: Fail. The showers I used had no shelves or private areas in which to change. That’s why I gave them the grade I did. Otherwise I had no major complains apart from the fact you cannot control the temperature to your liking. (I evaluate showers in a similar fashion to restrooms. See above.)
RECYCLING: No, not that I saw

BUGS: I was not troubled by bugs in late August when I was there.

Shenango River Lake Campground Playground
This is one of the two playgrounds I saw at Shenango River Lake Campground. There may be more, but I didn’t visit all the camping loops as of this writing. There is also a volleyball court and swing set within the campground (not pictured).

Gas: It wouldn’t be more than a few miles as Hermitage is nearby.
Dump: In the campground
Propane: AllStays indicates it would be Shenango Valley RV Park some 8 miles away
Groceries: There’s a Walmart SuperCenter with a market in Hermitage and probably other options there aw well… maybe 10 minutes
RV Parks: Shenango Valley RV Park some 8 miles away

Shenango River Lake Campground Map
This is the Shenango River Lake Campground map available at the office. There is something like 330 sites here. The legend shows which sites have electricity (circled site numbers) as well as which are reservable and non-reservable. There is a reservation phone number to as well as the phone number to the on-site campground office, etc. As with all of my images, click on it to enlarge.

I stopped at Shenango River Lake Campground on my way west from Connecticut where I spent much of the summer at Lake Waramaug Campground in New Preston. I was headed west to visit the 7 remaining states I needed to get to in order to have been to all 50. Shenango River Lake Campground isn’t far north of I-80, the route I was traveling.

If you’ve stayed at an ACE campground before you probably have a feel for how the ACE does things. There campgrounds are generally pretty nice but in my experience don’t quite ring the bell in terms of restrooms and showers. They get close in some cases, but the people who design and build them don’t seem to really be paying attention to what makes for a “proper” restroom or shower. I used both because they were usable, but as I said they could be better.

Shenango River Lake Fees
Here is a shot of the 2015 Shenango River Lake fee schedule. It also lists reservable and non-reservable sites, and sites with electricity. What it doesn’t say is that interagency pass holders get 50% off. Click on the image to enlarge.

My stay at Shenango River Lake Campground was brief so I didn’t get a terrific feel for the place outside of the campground itself. I believe there are water sports available on the lake but I don’t know what the rules are. There is a boat launch and No wake areas indicate on the campground map so it would seem that at least some kinds of motorized watercraft are permitted.

The loops and areas without electricity were sparsely populated when I was there mid-week in late August. those with electricity were close to full and I got the feeling that people tend to stick around. Why not? It’s a fairly pleasant place, after all, and at $12 a night for a site with electricity for people with an interagency pass it’s pretty much a bargain. ACE campgrounds are also know for that.

Shenango River Lake Campground Tower
This water tower looms over Shenango River Lake Campground. Actually, I’m just guessing it’s a water tower. It could be that the Martians have landed.

I don’t know much about the surrounding area, nothing at all really, so I don’t know what there is to do in these parts apart from activities on Shenango River Lake–why can’t the make up their minds if it’s a river or a lake?–or relaxing in the sun or shade. The campground is a good option to consider, in my opinion, while traversing I-80

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