We kicked off the 2018 camping season with a trip in Camper Dan to Livingston Manor and Roscoe in the Catskills region of New York.
Livingston Manor and Roscoe Overview
The Catskills region covers over 700,000 acres of public and private land across Sullivan, Delaware, Greene, and Ulster county. We headed to the towns of Livingston Manor and Roscoe in Sullivan county for two Hipcamp Field Scout assignments.
If you’re not familiar with Hipcamp, they are “committed to making getting outside fun and easy, as simple as selecting what, when and where you want your camping experience to be.” (from Hipcamp.com). They are a great resource for finding and booking campsites across the United States (unfortunately direct booking is not available for federal or state land). As a Field Scout, we visit properties to tell their story via photography and provide feedback to the private land owners.
The Catskills region is known for its great outdoor activities. Livingston Manor and Roscoe are no exception and are considered the birthplace of fly fishing.
Livingston Manor and Roscoe Accommodation
Camp Haven: Educational Campground
Our first assignment was in Livingston Manor staying in Camper Dan on the property of a non-profit organization. Our review and photos of Camp Haven: Educational Campground can be found on the Hipcamp listing for Camp Havn: Educational Campground or here:
If you’re interested in an immersive educational adventure in off-the-grid living then Camp Haven is for you! Haven for Humanity is a non-profit with a mission to inspire harmony with nature through educational projects.
It’s a good spot for someone who is interested in an introduction to off-the-grid living and to enjoy a weekend on 40 acres of backcountry woods. Pitch a tent or park, as we did, a self-contained camper van on the property. A stream can be used for bathing in the warmer months.
Be sure to take the guided tour of the property with Sam. The tour will take an hour (or more if you have lots of questions like we did!). The amount of research and design that has gone into the sustainable engineering and building is fascinating. There’s a geodesic dome with a passive solar design. This will be the future home of a kitchen and bathroom. Our favorite building was the greenhouse. It’s a design that illustrates aquaponics and, in the future, will produce biogas via anaerobic digestion to sustain the property on renewable energy.
We’d suggest you get in touch with Sam to understand the on-site options available during your stay. You can also choose to stay awhile and get involved in the on-going projects on-site. The Haven for Humanity website has details on current projects.
The closest town, Livingston Manor, is a short drive away and offers a grocery store, cafe, outdoor shop, trout hatchery, and brewery. This area of the Catskills is also well-known for its fantastic fly-fishing opportunities.
TIP: Try Hipcamp to discover campsites (or list your own land!). Use this link to sign-up and receive $10 in Hipcamp credit towards your first direct booking (not available for federal or state land)!
The Hidden Chalet Campground
The next night we slept in a refurbished 1965 Scotty Camper on a property Roscoe that contained two other super cool structures: a renovated box truck and a hobbit house. Our review and photos of The Hidden Chalet Campground can be found on the Hipcamp listing for The Hidden Chalet Campground or here:
Joseph was an amazing and delightful host and his property is top-notch. You definitely won’t be roughing it here.
You’ll wake up to sounds of nature on this tranquil property in the Catskills. The Hidden Chalet Campground is secluded yet it is only a few minutes away from downtown Roscoe, NY. Roscoe offers dining options, a museum, and even a brewery. This area of the Catskills is also well-known for its fantastic fly-fishing opportunities. Ask Joseph about fly-fishing lessons on the on-site pond. And enjoy a campfire in the evening.
You’ll most definitely have a hard time deciding which “campsite” to book. On the lower level, close to the pond and nicely appointed outhouse, there’s a full hookup site (a.k.a. The Hookup) for a camper (or a tent). The upper level, overlooking the pond, has three super unique sites and a fantastic shower room with toilet. There’s a re-purposed box truck (a.k.a. The Ravens Nest) with electric and hot water. The truck has bunk-beds, a kitchenette (with sink, stove, coffee maker, propane grill), breakfast bar, living area, and deck. There’s also a one-room chalet (a.k.a. The Secret Chalet) that was under construction when we visited. The chalet will definitely be my choice on a return visit! Check out the photos to see its unique charm and super cool architecture. Lastly, there’s a completely refurbished 1965 Scotty camper (a.k.a. The Cupola). This is where we stayed. It’s got all the bells and whistles – water, electric, stove, sink, fridge, microwave, and TV – and is decorated in a jungle theme. See if you can find all the monkeys!
Joseph’s attention to design and detail shines through in every part of his property. He’s a true craftsman. This is a perfect romantic weekend getaway location.
TIP: If you’d prefer to explore the Catskills without having to camp, check out these Livingston Manor area and Roscoe area accommodation options.
NOTE: We’ve stayed in nearby Walton, NY on a previous Hipcamp Field Scout assignment. Read about our time on Stony Creek Farmstead in a platform tent here.
Livingston Manor and Roscoe Area Map with Local Points of Interest
There’s so much to do and see in this area of the Catskills.
This map of the greater Livingston Manor and Roscoe area highlights dining options, hikes, and other points of interest and attractions – such as museums and photo opportunities. This map is not all-inclusive but includes items we’ve experienced firsthand or that were recommended to us by locals. Check out the links within the Information and Resources section below for other activities and events that may be of interest.
Livingston Manor and Roscoe Area Information and Resources
May 4 – 6, 2018