Circle M was our very first introduction to the Outdoor World and Thousand Trails campgrounds. It also just so happens to be the closest Thousand Trails park to our house and it’s close to my home town of York, PA which means when we go- it’s easy to get together with old friends and family. It’s also where I’ve learned that I’m snobby and make the distinction between an “RV park” and a “campground”. Circle M (and most of the Thousand Trails parks) is for RVing. It’s good for what it is, though…
Sites (Gravel parking pads, surrounded by grass, not very level)
There are a few variations on the sites, but they’re generally a gravel parking pad that is usually not incredibly level (not horribly un-level but could be better for a private park, in my opinion). The sites generally do not offer much privacy between them at all. All RV sites have 50amp service, water and most have sewer hookups (except those down by the creek).
I wanted to make a note about the electricity – I don’t run an EMS/surge protector but I have never had power issues while I have been here. (Update August 2016, I now run one and still have not had electrical issues there.) As well, the water pressure has been good for showering and whatnot.
The campground is setup with a few loops/wagonwheels with a pavilion in the middle. A friend’s family and friends go with 5 or 6 RVs and will use these as common areas. We’ve joined them a time or two and it works out well.
Favorite sites/site comments:
- The even sites B42-B52 are on a hill with the low side being the door-side. This makes for quite the jump out of your camper. We bought a stool our first trip with the fifth wheel because it was unwieldy getting in and out.
- When available, we prefer N3 or N4. We camped in N1 in our pop-up and it was nice (close to the bathroom, away from other people).
- The creek sites – these are definitely more private than the other sites, but we’re slaves to our sewer hookup! Though, there’s a steep hill to get down to the creek-side. Circle M does offer a free honey wagon service a few days a week and on days that the honey wagon isn’t free, it’s only $5 per use (though, I did have a bad experience with the honey wagon at Sea Pines and, in general, I’m wary of them).
Big Rig Friendly? (Yes)
There is one slight turn past the “Chuck Wagon” that the campground map doesn’t reflect that gets cozy. But otherwise, we’ve been able to get around the campground without issue.
Bathrooms and Showers (Clean enough, mostly OK)
There have been a few horror stories that our friends have told about the bathrooms. But, when we pop-up camped, we didn’t have issues with the bathhouses. They were usually generally clean and in OK working order. The shower heads could be hit or miss (weird spray, bad aiming), but we could usually find workable showers. Water temperatures were generally consistent.
Amenities (Lots- pools (indoor and outdoor), playgrounds, mini-golf, activities for kids)
There are 2 main pools – one indoor with a separate pool area for a slide, kids play area and those floating things that you climb across. Due to it being an indoor pool, it has a high chlorine content. There’s a hot tub. The outdoor pool is much simpler – just a big pool. There’s also a baby pool that’s usually bath-water warm. In general, there aren’t life guards and are usually only an occasional “rule enforcer”.
Other amenities are:
- Multiple playgrounds
- Par 3 golf course
- Basketball court
- Tennis court
- Baseball diamond
- Big open field behind sites B81-B101
- Horseshoe shaped creek with spots for launching canoes and kayaks
Everything is fairly well maintained. There’s also a pretty decent activities calendar each weekend that darling daughter looks forward to.
Cell Phone Service (Fine)
I have worked from here using my AT&T service with my hotspot tethering on my iPhone. As well, per a commenter on Facebook said that she gets 4G from Verizon without issue.
Over-the-air TV Service & Cable (Over-the-air is fine; cable offered)
The over-the-air TV service works well. We usually get about a dozen channels (guessing from memory). The campground does offer cable; a commenter on Facebook indicated that it was free but has now gone to a pay-per-use system (you pay by the day, week, month or seasonal).
Camp Store (Pretty limited selection)
I’ve only been in the camp store a time or two collecting my daughter from one of the evening activities (karaoke, dance, etc.) was that it seems pretty sparse. But we literally were in there buying a soda or water or something.
Overall Rating/Comments (3.5 out of 5 stars)
It’s a convenient location for us and the services that we’ve used have all worked without issue. Good water, good electric and good sewer. My biggest “ding” is twofold – 1) the lack of privacy at the site 2) the park doesn’t seem to cleanup the sites after someone checks out – our last site had broken glass and other metal scraps around the firepit. (Sadly, per a commenter on Facebook – this seems to be the norm with Outdoor World campgrounds.)
2111 Millersville Road
Lancaster, PA 17603
There is also a Facebook group that is not affiliated with Thousand Trails that have posted pictures from Circle M – https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.589870037690239&type=1.