The Appalachian Mountain Club’s Cardigan Campsites offer primitive camping on the beautiful Cardigan Reservation and easy access to countless trails. There are both individual and group sites available, and all are walk-in sites. You may find yourself parking along the dirt road a ways down from the main parking lot, as the limited parking is also shared with hikers and Cardigan Lodge guests. Quite possibly the best feature of camping in the walk-in sites is the availability of wheelbarrows to shuttle your equipment to your site. The path to the sites are wide, dirt trails with an easy grade.
The campsites are mainly on the east and west side of Cardigan Lodge, where you’ll check in when you arrive. The “Welton Falls” sites to the east have a handful of sites, several of which provide a wooden tent platform. The “Mountain” sites to the west are a little longer walk, but they offer more seclusion. Duke’s Meadow campsites are large, open sites in a grassy meadow, with some sites being more elevated on the hillside. Campsites have fire pits and picnic tables, and some of them have a bench, making sitting by the fire more comfortable. If you’d rather have the gourmet meal the lodge crew is cooking up over your camp food, you can eat indoors at Cardigan Lodge with 24-hour advance notice and an extra fee.
In addition to the campsites, your group can also reserve the High Cabin for extra adventure. The High Cabin requires a 2-mile hike to reach and is self-service. There are 12 bunks and a camp stove, but you’ll need to bring your own food and other camping gear. This cabin was built in 1931 and is open in all seasons. While there’s a woodstove for winter warmth, you’ll need to pack firewood up from the lodge below.