Georgia State Parks and Historic Sites
We'll help you discover the joy of
sleeping under the stars.

First-Time Camper

If you've always wanted to try camping, but weren’t sure how to begin -- we can help. Through our First-Time Camper program, you’ll get borrowed gear, expert advice, two nights’ accommodations and more. Regular camping rates apply. Use of equipment and ranger guidance is provided with the program.

Find out what Chris Latson and his family thought about their "First-Time Camper" experience at Fort Mountain State Park.
  Latson Family

   Camping 101
Our park rangers are eager to share their love for camping and the great outdoors. When you arrive, someone will guide you on how to set up camp and provide insider tips. You’ll even get an emergency phone number to call during the night.
  park ranger

   Gear From REI & Coleman
Test out great gear provided by REI (Recreation Equipment Incorporated) & Coleman. and websites offer lots of helpful expert advice.  (Please bring your own sleeping bag or blanket, and a pillow.)
  1 Tent (6 person)
  4 Sleeping Pads 
  1 Camp Stove with Fuel
  4 Roasting Forks
  1 Lantern
  2 Camp Chairs
  REI gear

   Our Campgrounds
Choose from 13 Georgia State Parks. Campsites have water and electric hookups, picnic tables, grills and campfire pits. Bathrooms and hot showers are within walking distance.

To check on availability and to make reservations, call the Park directly and be sure to identify yourself as a First-Time Camper.

It is recommended that you reserve your space at least two weeks in advance.
  A.H. Stephens State Park (Crawfordville) 706-456-2602
  F. D. Roosevelt State Park (Pine Mountain) 706-663-4858
  Fort Mountain State Park (Chatsworth) - individuals & groups,
  Fort Yargo State Park (Winder) 770-867-3489
  General Coffee State Park (Nicholls) 912-384-7082
  Gordonia-Alatamaha State Park (Reidsville) 912-557-7744
  James H. Floyd State Park (Near Rome) 706-857-0826
  Laura S. Walker State Park (Near Okefenokee) 912-287-4900
  Red Top Mountain State Park (Acworth) - individuals & groups,
  Reed Bingham State Park (Adel) 229-896-3551;
available Sept.-May only
  Richard B. Russell State Park (Elberton) 706-213-2045
  Sapelo Island (Darien) 912-485-2299
  Stephen C. Foster State Park (Fargo) 912-637-5274

   First-Time Camper - Novices learn about sleeping under the stars
   Read about a family's 1st time camper experience at General Coffee
  First Time Camper parks map

  Regular camping rates apply.
  $5 ParkPass for the duration of your stay.
  Many park activities are free, such as hiking, geocaching and fishing.  Some activities have a fee, such as mini-golf, boat rental or swimming pools.

   To Qualify
Anyone who has never camped in a Georgia State Park may participate. 

Because gear is borrowed, pets are not allowed in the First-Time Camper Program. But if you love the experience and come back again, your dog can enjoy camping too!

   Group Camp Out
Groups of up to 18 people can also try the First-Time Camper program.  For one low price, multiple families or groups of friends will get all of the benefits of the program for one night of camping.  The Group Camping option is available at Fort Mountain State Park - 706-422-1932 and at Red Top Mountain State Park - 770-975-0055. (Call for group rates and to schedule your event.)
               ~ Fort Mountain State Park
               ~ Red Top Mountain State Park

Contact our program coordinator, Ellen Graham at 706/878-4703 or
              • How do I check on availability and make reservations - Please call the Park directly to find out availability and make reservations. Be sure to identify yourself as a First-Time Camper.
              • Other Frequently Asked Questions

   REI Expert Advice
Check out REI's helpful pre-trip information about camping and a number of outdoor pursuits at
   7 reasons why Reader's Digest says camping is a great activity.

REI logo
Camping Gopher
The First-Time Camper program is being sponsored by generous donations from REI and Coleman.

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