Now none of these can replace Ocean Wood, Mike Brunton’s campground on the the Schoodic Peninsula that closed after last summer. But, if you’re looking for a place to pitch your tent or park your pop-up, pick-up or small RV on the coast, a campground with few frills but big natural assets, consider these:
• Recompence Shores Campsites, Freeport: An eco-sensitive campground that’s part of Wolfe’s Neck Farm (you know, kid-friendly farm animals for petting and educational programs). That aside, there are 175 wooded tent sites, a few with hook-ups, spread along three miles of tidal Casco Bay shoreline, far from the frenzy that’s downtown Freeport.
• Hermit Island Campground, Phippsburg: Start planning now to snag one of these 275 tenting and pick-up sites. Why? The location, on a causeway-linked, 2455-acre island at the tip of the Phippsburg peninsula, south of Bath. There are open and wooded sites, but no-hookups. Pluses include seven private beaches and hiking trails.
• Old Quarry Ocean Adventures Campground, Stonington: A possibility, although it’s probably far busier than most Ocean Wood devotees would prefer, as it’s also the headquarters for Old Quarry’s kayak/boat/bike etc adventures. Still, the camping sites are away from the madness, and no vehicles are allowed near the wooded and/or oceanfront campsites, all with tenting platforms. Only three with RV hook-ups.
•Mt Desert Campground, Somesville, Mount Desert: This one’s a gem, at the head of Somes Sound on Mount Desert Island. It has 152 tent sites in the woods and along the shoreline. Electrical hook-ups are available, but no trailers allowed that are longer than 20 feet.
• Mainayr Campground, Steuben: In the Ayr family since 1958, this well-off-the-beaten-path campground has 35 tenting and RV sites on tidal Joy Cove. Nothing fancy or fussy. Just good ole campin’, with Ayr family stories perhaps shared around the campfire.
• Cobscook Bay State Park, Edmunds Township: One of the crown camping jewels in Maine’s state park system. There are 106 sites in the woods, in the fields, and along the shore line of this spectacular 888-acre chunk of real estate. Raw. Remote. Gorgeous.