Goshen Pond Campground
Wharton State Forest
Address: Atsion Road, Shamong, NJ 08088
Coordinates: 39°44’44.43″N, 74°45’34.52″W
On Atsion Road, turn onto the dirt road with the sign for Goshen Pond. Drive down and make your SECOND right where there is a small sign in the tree that says “campground”. The first turn also goes to the campground, but has a million bumps that your car will probably not appreciate.
Dirt road, but accessible by most any vehicle under normal conditions (has passed my “1989 Toyota Corolla” test many times)
Website for official info:
Website for campsite booking and pricing:
One of my absolute favorite campgrounds anywhere, probably because I’ve camped here at least once a year since 1992. This is my favorite, but with few pull up sites (although no walk in is very far), only pit toilets, no lights, no office, etc, this is more roughing it than many car campers are used to. NOT recommended at all for any sort of recreational vehicle camping (no hook ups, most sites completely inaccessible to RVs, and sugar sand is your enemy). If you want a few more amenities, like flush toilets, the Atsion Family Campground is less than a minute down the road.
Water: Hand pump (in Group Site A)
Bathrooms – Four primitive, single seat outhouse pit toilets (two on the group side, two on the individual site side). No water, no flush, no lights (bring flashlight with you at night!), but usually stocked with toilet paper.
Food protection – no bear boxes (low bear risk, but have been spotted in the area, most famously on the school playground in nearby Atco). Store food in car, especially if you don’t want to make friends with skunks or raccoon..
Facilities (each site):
Group campsites – Three sites, with room for 15 to 50 people. All are walk-in. No tables, no shelters. Decent size fire ring.
Regular campsites – Sixteen sites, with maximum of two tents and/or six people. 14 of these are walk-in. No tables, no shelters, but each has a small fire ring. Many are VERY close to each other, so try to claim one set off a bit or close to the pond if you can.
Open year round! I’ve camped here each season. The only season that I would not recommend is the summer, as its location next to the pond/swamp means there are a billion mosquitoes. I’ve had the pump work fine in below freezing temperatures.
As with all sites in the New Jersey State Parks – no alcohol is allowed. They do and will write tickets.
The pond is quite pretty. Check it out especially at sunset. There is a beaver dam and lodge in the pond.
The pond is *technically* canoe or kayak-able, but expect to scrape bottom early and often (I’ve tried it).
The Atsion Ranger Station is NOT open year round, and usually closes really early (4 PM) when it is open, so be aware. The park police are pretty good about if you don’t get there to get your permit in time, as most people work, but its a good idea to at least have a print out or screen shot of your online reservation (which is NOT the same as your permit).
Nearby trails and things to see:
Atsion Lake is nearby, great for swimming or canoeing in the summer.
Canoeing the Mullica River from Atsion to Pleasant Mills. Pine Barrens Adventures is the closest rental for boats, and is on Atsion Road near the campground. They also offer canoe, hiking, a van tours of the pine barrens.
The ghost town of Atsion (with the Atsion Ranger Station, where you’ll pick up your camping permit).
Atsion Lake Hikes – Shamong, NJ
Mullica River Trail – Shamong to Batsto, NJ
Pipers Corner Preserve – Shamong, NJ
Experiences at the campground? Helpful hints for folks? Please leave them in the comments for folks to see, or e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll tack them onto the bottom here!