Emerson Bay Campground Scheduled For Renovation
Posted: 02/14/2012
The campground renovation at Emerson Bay State Recreation Area on the southwest shore of West Okoboji Lake is scheduled to begin on June 1. Prior to that, campers are encouraged to camp through May, including walleye weekend and Memorial Day Weekend.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources will begin accepting reservations for camping at Emerson Bay at 9 a.m., Central Standard Time, Feb. 15. Reservations will not be taken for dates beyond May 31, through the rest of the year.

“This is a popular park on our premier lake and we are excited to get this campground renovation underway,” said Kevin Szcodronski, chief of the Iowa DNR’s State Parks Bureau. The project has been released for contractors to bid on with a completion date of Sept. 30, weather permitting. The new campground will open in the spring of 2013.

The renovation plan calls for upgrading all the electrical service from 30 amps to 50 amps, leveling the sites, and adding a graveled living space and new fire ring at each site.  The new campsites will be angled for easier backing. The leaking water line to the new shower building will be replaced.

Emerson Bay will have 82 electrical sites once completed, an increase of 25 sites, and of those 82 sites, 23 will offer water and sewer connections. The new campground will have a slightly different appearance with the elimination of a road and row of brush, and camping pads in areas that previously were tent sites.  The number of tent sites is yet to be determined.

Once the reconstruction is finished, the area will be seeded and stabilized before allowing campers back in. 

“If there is a delay to begin construction extending beyond June 1, we are planning to continue to allow camping but it will be for walk in camping only – we will not take reservations for dates past June 1,” Szcodronski said.