Ideal for swimming, camping, hiking and picnicking, Claytor Lake is known for sport fishing and boating. The park has a full-service marina with docking slips, supplies, fuel, boat rentals and refreshments. The Water's Edge Meeting Facility is perfect for weddings, receptions and reunions, and wedding packages are available. There's also a gift shop. Three lodges and 13 cabins overlook the 4,500-acre lake, offering visitors a scenic retreat. The historic Howe House has interactive exhibits describing the ecology of the lake and the surrounding areas.
Hours: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Vehicles: At campsites, two vehicles per site in addition to camping unit. All others are charged the standard parking fee. Camping guests may use the boat launch for up to two boats at no additional charge.
Two camping units are allowed per campsite; only one axled camper is allowed per site.
Campsites have recently been renovated for guest comfort and park resource protection. All equipment and vehicles must be kept within the site bordered by 6 x 6 inch timbers. Additional vehicles must be parked in the lot adjacent to the campground contact station or in the Campground D parking lot.
Visitors to overnight guests must leave the park by 10 p.m. and are charged the normal parking fee.
Each campsite has a fire ring type with a metal grill. All rest on the ground and can be used for campfires.
Firewood is available for a small fee. Please do not bring your own as it may have insects that could harm the park's trees.
Generators are not permitted in the campground.
Electric-water sites accept 20 and 30 amp current.
Campground D: Accommodates large RV units up to 40 feet on sites specifically reserved as indicated on site chart. Sites that aren't specifically reserved can accommodate RVs up to 35 feet long. Water and electric hookups except in March and November when there is electricity but no water. Also, in April and late October, availability of water depends on the weather. There are no sewer hook-ups, but there is a dump station. The area is sparsely wooded and mostly flat. Most large RV sites are pull-through. Restroom is universally accessible. Sites D-27 and D-35 are near the bathhouse and are universally accessible.
Campgrounds A, B and C: Will accommodate a mix of equipment; however, mostly tents and small trailers up to 20 feet long. No hookups for electric and water. Campgrounds are mostly wooded. Terrain varies from level to hilly.
Total sites of each type: STD, 64; E/W, 39
STD - Various equipment up to 20 feet; campgrounds A, B, & C. No hookups.
E/W - Various equipment up to 40 feet. Cold weather may affect the availability of water - see above.
Total campsites: 103
Group campsite - Standard tent site; no hookups, tents only. Maximum of 35 people, 10 tents and 10 vehicles. Two grills, six picnic tables, no lantern hangers.
No water or electricity.
Rented only to groups.
In Campground D, which has a bathhouse with running water and hot showers.
Generators are not permitted.
The park has six trails - a total of 7 miles of easy-rating hike or bike trails - open year-round. Plant life is predominantly representative of a mature oak-hickory-poplar forest. Extensive reforestation is ongoing. White-tailed deer, various birds, raccoons, squirrels and other species are common.
Within the trail system lies a 5K cross-country trail designed by Boy Scout troop 244. The trail starts on Lakeview Trail in front of the Water's Edge Meeting Facility and ends in front of the lodges. It's great for seasoned and novice runners. Those interested in hosting a 5K at the park should contact the park office.
The park's Shady Ridge Trail, a .66-mile self-guided interpretive loop trail, is part of TRACK Trail Adventures, a program that uses brochures to help kids explore nature. A different story unfolds with each page of the brochure.
Between the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day, guarded beach swimming is available for a fee. The swimming area has a diving tower, snack bar and gift shop. Operating hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on weekends. Weather and other issues may at times force suspension of guarded swimming. When guarded swimming is unavailable, guests may swim at the beach’s designated area but do so at their own risk. Swimming elsewhere in the park is not advised.
Motorboats permitted. Except for the beach and cabin area, fishing is permitted from the shoreline throughout the park. Bass, catfish, muskie, walleye and striped bass are among the popular sport fish found in the lake. A valid Virginia freshwater-fishing license is required. Licenses may be purchased at the Water's Edge gift shop when it's open or at the park office during off-season.
The park and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries recently installed various fish attractors to improve fishing for both shoreline and boating anglers.
The park offers boat slip rental, a launch ramp (no charge to overnight guests), gasoline sales, fishing supplies and licenses, and a gift shop. Long-term boat slips are available by calling the park at 540-643-2500. Overnight dock rentals are available by calling 800-933-7275, Monday through Friday. Boats longer than 24 feet cannot be accommodated. Check-in is 4 p.m., check out is 3 p.m. There's a 14-night maximum stay limit.
Claytor Lake Water Sports at the marina offers a variety of pontoons, motorboats, canoes and kayaks, can handle all your boat rental needs. They also rent bicycles for all ages and sizes.
None at this park, but horse rental is available at New River Trail State Park, which is about 30 minutes away.