Elmwood Recreation Area

Elmwood Recreation Area
Published: July 21, 2022
Categories: Campsites


It’s that time of year again! The sun is shining, and the birds are chirping. That can only mean one thing: summer is finally here! Pack your bags, fill up the tank, and get ready for some good old-fashioned camping.

If you’re looking for the best spot to camp in South Carolina this summer, we insist you check out the Elmwood Recreation Area. This campground is located in McClellanville, South Carolina, and has a lot of amenities, such as bathrooms, vault toilets, and dump stations.

The campground also offers plenty of activities to keep you busy, such as fishing, deer hunting, hiking, and swimming. Plus, it is located in a beautiful area that is sure to please nature lovers.

In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about Elmwood Recreation Campground Area, including the type of amenities available, its activities, and what other guests have to say about their experience.

Important Information About Elmwood Recreation Campground Area

Below, we discuss some key pieces of information you should know before making your way over to the campground.

Campground Location

The Elmwood Recreation Campground Area is located in the northeastern portion of the Francis Marion National Forest. Its official location is in Jamestown, SC highway, 29453, United States, and is about an hour from Myrtle Beach and a little over two hours from Charleston.

National Forest Service

Elmwood Recreation Area is associated with the USDA National Forest Service, which administers the USA’s 155 national forests and 20 national grasslands, including some of the most searched national parks in the country.

Deer And Turkey Hunts

Elmwood Recreation Area is a popular camp during deer and turkey hunts on the Waterhorn Hunt Unit. The campground also serves as a South Carolina Department of Natural Resources game check station during big-game hunting season.

Free Of Charge

One important thing to note is that Elmwood Recreation Area is free of charge. This means campers don’t need to pay a dime before enjoying the camping services at Elmwood Recreation Area. However, campers pay costs for some activities, such as renting boats and canoes. Also, you must adhere to the 14-day stay limit. To book a stay, contact the campground directly.

Open Season

Elmwood Recreation Campground Area is open throughout the year, and campers can visit anytime.


If you have a pet and you’re looking for a pet-friendly campground, Elmwood Recreation Area should be your top choice. The campground allows pets as long as they are kept on a leash always.

How To Locate Elmwood Recreation Area

Direction sign


Locating Elmwood Recreation Area is relatively easy. You can use your GPS to find the campground’s exact location. Also, you can visit the Francis Marion National Forest website and search for Elmwood Recreation Area using the interactive map. The GPS coordinates are 33.0313° N and 79.4722° W.

Campers coming from Charleston should take US Highway 17 north past McClellanville to Rutledge Road (SC Route 857-S). Turn left onto Rutledge Road, and drive four miles to Elmwood Recreation Area. You will see the Elmwood Recreation Campground Area sign on your right.

From Myrtle Beach, take Highway 17 north to SC Highway 45. Turn right on SC Highway 45 and drive for about 35 miles to Elmwood Recreation Area. The campground will be on your left after you pass Rutledge Road.

You can also download the directional guide from Elmwood Recreation Area’s website.

Amenities Available At Elmwood Recreation Area

Now let’s take a look at some of the amenities put in place to ensure your stay at the Elmwood Recreation Area is comfortable.

Picnic Tables And Grills

A picnic table near the sea


You can find a picnic table and grill at various spots in the Elmwood Recreation campground. These areas are perfect for campers who want to enjoy a meal with their family and friends.

Tent Camping



Elmwood Recreation campgroun A woman relaxing by the woods d offers tent camping for those who want to experience sleeping under the stars. This allows campers to enjoy primitive camping.

RV Camping

Elmwood Recreation Area also has RV camping sites available. This is perfect for campers who want to have all the comforts of home while enjoying the great outdoors. You can bring your RV or rent one.

Boat Ramps

This campground has boat ramps that provide access to water bodies for those who want to go fishing or boating. You can also use the boat ramps to launch your kayak or canoe.

Canoe And Kayak Rentals

The Elmwood Recreation Campground offers canoe and kayak rentals for campers who want to explore the waterways around the area. This is a great way to get some exercise and enjoy the scenery.

Vault Toilet And Restrooms

There are vault toilets and restrooms available at Elmwood Recreation Area. These are clean and well-maintained by staff.

Dump Station

There is a dump station available at Elmwood Recreation Area. This is convenient for those who have RVs and need to empty their holding tanks.

Activities To Do At Elmwood Recreation Area

There are many activities that campers can take part in at Elmwood Recreation Area. Here are some of the most popular ones:


A man hiking in the woods


One of the best things to do at Elmwood Recreation Area is to go hiking. South Carolina has over 600,000 acres of National forests, including the Francis Marion and Sumter National Forests. As stated earlier, Elmwood Recreation Area is within the Francis Marion National Forest. Campers can explore hiking trails. The nature trails pass through various habitats, including hardwood forests, pine forests, and wetlands. They are easy to hike and great for campers of all ages.


A camper fishing in a lake


Another popular activity at Elmwood Recreation Area is fishing. There are many freshwater lakes and rivers in South Carolina that are perfect for fishing.


Hunting is also allowed in certain areas of the Elmwood Recreation Area. However, hunting is only permitted in designated areas and during specific seasons. You can go on turkey hunts, deer hunts, and small game hunts.


The Elmwood Recreation Campground Area also has boat ramps that provide access to the water for those who want to go fishing or boating. You can also use the boat ramps to launch your kayak or canoe.


No lifeguards are on duty at Elmwood Recreation Area, so swimming is done at your own risk. However, many freshwater lakes and rivers are perfect for swimming.

Explore Charleston

Charleston is a historic city that is just a short drive from Elmwood Recreation Area. There are many things to see and do in Charleston, including tours of historic homes, museums, restaurants, and shops.

OHV And ATV Riding

OHV and ATV riding is allowed in certain areas of Elmwood Recreation Area. However, you must have a permit to ride your OHV or ATV.

Customer Reviews About Elmwood Recreation Area

Here are some reviews about Elmwood Recreation Area from past guests:

Shawn Gehrisch (verified Google review) shares:

Elmwood Recreation Area is a beautiful place to camp, RV, or tent. There are about 30 spots on the weekend, and it fills up fast. The rangers do patrol regularly. There are two outhouse-type bathrooms and a water spigot in the park’s center. It is very quiet and peaceful. We will come back again,

Jennifer Jankovich (verified Google review) shares:

This had to be one of my favorite free camping sites in South Carolina. I enjoyed my camp trip, but they only have a vault toilet, and it’s far back in the woods. You can’t be afraid of dirt roads if you have the time and the opportunity. I highly recommend this as a stop. It is so peaceful.”

Adrienne Young(verified Google review) shares:

We got to Elmwood in the spring. It’s a beautiful, free campground! It has a 14-day max stay, and no reservations are needed. The campground has blooming flowers like Wisteria Jasmine, azaleas, and more flowers than you can imagine. Everything is green here, and the wildlife is amazing. There are several places with water access and good fishing. The campground is a great place to walk, jog, and bike. There is a vault toilet and water spigots for drinking water. You come down a paved road, and it ends in the dirt; then there’s a left turn, and the road looks scary. Especially when you get to the right turn, our 40-foot Class A Towing a Jeep Grand Cherokee made it fine without any issue.


Elmwood Recreation Area is a great place to visit this summer if you are looking for a fun RV campground. It offers many amenities and activities that will make your stay enjoyable.

You can also go hiking, camping, fishing, hunting, boating, and swimming. Elmwood Recreation Area is also an excellent place for off-road rides. Many guests who have visited Elmwood Recreation Area have left positive reviews. So if you are looking for a fun RV campground to visit this summer, Elmwood Recreation Campground Area is a great option.

Need To Go RV Camping?

A beautiful beach


If you are planning a stay at Elmwood Recreational campground Area or any other surrounding campgrounds, the Cozy Turtle RV staff would be delighted to assist you with your next family vacation.

We specialize in RV rentals and have assisted numerous families in finding the perfect RVs for rent at affordable rates. Reach out today if you are searching for an affordable way to go RV camping!

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