Best Ohio Camping: Iron Ridge at the Beautiful Lake Vesuvius

Updated on July 23, 2020
Deb Vesco Roberts profile image

I love to review and share our adventures, which include running/racing, backpacking, camping, road trips, traveling, especially cruising.


Iron Ridge Campground at Lake Vesuvius

Do you love the idea of adventure plus a serene, relaxing location for your camping get-away? If you love long hiking trails, lakes, beaches, canoeing, and kayaking, I have the place for you!

Iron Ridge at Lake Vesuvius is located in Ohio's Wayne National Forest. The closest town is Ironton, ten miles from the campground, which is perfect. With just 32 campsites and varying types of hookups (none with sewer), we found this to be one of the nicest smaller campgrounds in Ohio. The 143-acre lake and 1,200-acre complex provide the perfect spot for a camping or RV retreat.

We reserved site #3, which is nestled under the trees and contains a double paved pad (perfect for guests or group camping), an oversized picnic table, and a fire ring with an attached grill. It's flat and perfect for adding an insect shelter, or additional tents. This site has both electric and water (no sewer) hookups. The cost is only $20 per night, the least expensive of all the sites we've stayed to date with water and electricity.

The lake has a small beach area where boating, swimming, and fishing are permitted. During our hike, we noticed a canoe/kayak launching area, with the public beach in the same vicinity.

Facility Details - IRON RIDGE - LAKE VESUVIUS, OH -

Reservations for camping in the Lake Vesuvius Recreation Area (Oak Hill and Iron Ridge Campgrounds) can be made by visiting

Site #3


Know Before You Go

Pets are permitted within recreation areas but must be caged, on a leash not longer than six feet, or under other physical restrictive control.

Camping or the establishment of a campsite within the Wayne National Forest shall be limited to a period of time not to exceed 14 days in any 30 day time period.

Don't move firewood: To limit the spread of invasive tree-killing pests, firewood from outside the area is not permitted. Obtain your firewood at or near your camping destination.

Doesn't Everyone Take Their Cats Camping?

Our Savannah cats enjoying the outdoors.
Our Savannah cats enjoying the outdoors. | Source
Trying out our new EZ-UP tent and screen room.  Highly recommended!
Trying out our new EZ-UP tent and screen room. Highly recommended! | Source
A shot from another campgrounds showing our four Savannah cats enjoying the screen room.
A shot from another campgrounds showing our four Savannah cats enjoying the screen room. | Source

Would you like to add this screen/room combination to your campsite?

Continue reading to learn where to purchase this dynamic duo. You'll wonder how your campsite ever got by without it!

E-Z UP Pyramid Instant Shelter Canopy, 10' by 10'

E-Z UP Pyramid Instant Shelter 10' x 10' Canopy | Portable Popup Tent W/ Upgraded Wide-Trax Roller Bag | Royal Blue (PR3WH10RB)
E-Z UP Pyramid Instant Shelter 10' x 10' Canopy | Portable Popup Tent W/ Upgraded Wide-Trax Roller Bag | Royal Blue (PR3WH10RB)
We wanted to add an outdoor option for additional shade, mosquito, and rain protection to our campsites. After speaking with a representative from the E-Z UP company, we put together the perfect combination (when the screen-room shown below is added to the Pyramid model tent). With a wide range of fun color combinations, fast set-up, great strength, and overall durability, this is the perfect combination to enhance your tent or RV experience; not to mention, it's perfect for your backyard gatherings or block parties too! The tent comes with a wheeled storage case to make moving and carrying easy for anyone.

EZ-Up 10x10 Screen Room

E-Z UP SC10SLGY Cube Mesh Wall Canopy Screen Room, 6 Person
E-Z UP SC10SLGY Cube Mesh Wall Canopy Screen Room, 6 Person
Not only is this tent and screen room a great way to enjoy being outside without the mosquitoes, but it's also is a great place for our four lively Savannah Cats to hang out with us outside and not be tethered on their leashes--which is why we bought this in the first place! Of course, they can't be left unattended in it due to the fact they can totally tear it to shreds and break out; but they're happy to hang out in it with us. The best part about this screen room is the mesh is almost invisible and you forget you're in a screen room!

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2018 Debra Roberts

If you've been to Lake Vesuvius or Iron Ridge Campground or if you simply enjoyed this review, please leave some feedback in the comments below. Happy Camping!

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    • profile image

      Lavern Moore 

      14 months ago

      I would love to go camping at iron ridge. I would enjoy it greatly. I have visited Ohio many times but never here.

    • profile image

      The Sunny Side Lifestyle Co. 

      14 months ago

      Lake Vesuvius looks stunning! Ten miles from the nearest town is a little remote for me but I'm sure ensured that you were focused on enjoying nature and relaxing. I loved to see that your cats enjoy camping too!

    • profile image


      14 months ago

      Wow what a cool idea and I love that you travel with your Savanah cats! I need that screenroom to avoid being eaten by all these bugs

    • profile image

      Tracy @ Cleland Clan 

      14 months ago

      Ohio has so many beautiful state parks and natural areas. I've lived in Ohio all my life and still hadn't heard of this one. Now, it's on my list for a weekend getaway!

    • profile image

      Live Learn Better 

      14 months ago

      This is nice though camping isn't my type of fun. One of these days will give it a try. Your lucky cats are having a good time.

    • profile image

      Subhashish Roy 

      14 months ago

      I had heard of Lake Vesuvius but did not know much about it. It looks like a stunning place which I would love to visit sometime.My list is getting longer each day

    • profile image

      jerry godinho 

      14 months ago

      buying an RV and driving from alaska to mexico is my dream and your post reminded me of my dream. A great write up and i liked your pics thanks for writing this

    • profile image


      14 months ago

      Looks great! i would so spend my time there. I like camping, especially when it is a nice and accessible place like you reviewed.

    • profile image

      Erica (The Prepping Wife) 

      14 months ago

      I’ve always wanted to buy an RV and travel around, and this post reminded me of that! I love that you can have pets with you too, and you talked about the rules, especially the firewood rule. I wouldn’t have even thought about that.

    • profile image


      14 months ago

      How nice that one can take pets along with them too! :) I would love to hike there someday.

    • profile image

      Luna S 

      14 months ago

      This does look like a beautiful place to stop and set up camp for a night or two! I like that it is near the water.

    • profile image

      Trish Veltman 

      14 months ago

      I'd love to tour the US in an RV - such a nice way to get around and see different places. this campground would make a perfect retreat.

    • profile image

      Scott DeNicola 

      14 months ago

      We've never been much of a camping family but if it were a campground like this it may be a different story. And if we had a camper as well. Love the pop-up shade cover and screen idea. We do however like a good hike and these look like some fantastic trails should we get to Iron Ridge Campground one day. The opening picture is enough to make me want to go.

    • profile image

      Despite Pain 

      14 months ago

      I am a wee bit envious - we would love an RV. We hired one many years ago and toured Scotland and had such a good time. The area you were in looks so nice. Relaxing, yet plenty to do in the area. I love the screen room for your cats (which are absolutely gorgeous).

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 

      23 months ago

      Great pictures. Your off to a fine start with HubPages.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      23 months ago from UK

      Great photos and product placement in this hub.


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