STERLING—Palisade State Park has expanded its acreage and is adding an 11-site campground south of the Palisade Dam to be opened later this summer.
The campground is almost finished, with a pavilion, campfire rings and tables still to be put in place.
The new campground is being developed in partnership with Manti Irrigation Company. The irrigation company is leasing the land. The park will run the campground. The new campground is not named yet, but will be before it opens, says Bevan Monroe, park manager.
The new campground is a little more rugged but also more secluded than campgrounds in the existing park. The campsites do not have sewer, power or water hookups.
While the roads aren’t paved, they are graded with road base, making them accessible to more than just four-wheel-drive vehicles.
One of the 11 sites is a group site. That is where the pavilion will be located, along with park benches and tables. Cottonwood trees line the group site, providing natural shade during part of the day.
The new campground will not be taking reservations months in advance like existing Palisade Park campgrounds do, Monroe says. The park has opted to limit reservations to about one month in advance, so it can troubleshoot any issues that come up.
Palisade State Park is about 254 acres total. Eighty-two acres have been added within the last two years, including the new campground.
The park currently has four campgrounds: Arapeen, Pioneer, Sanpitch and Wakara. They are all $25 to $35 per night. The new campground will be similarly priced.
Reservations for the existing campgrounds open up at 8 a.m. each day for dates up to four months in the future. Monroe recommends reserving spots at the earliest time possible during their peak months.
The Wakara campground offers full hookups and isn’t very tent-friendly. The Arapeen campground is very tent friendly, with grass and shade. Sanpitch campground has some grass areas that are tent-friendly, but the majority of sites are more trailer-friendly.
According to the Utah State Parks visitation data, Palisade had 206,954 visitors during the 2020-21 fiscal year, a slight increase from the 203,525 visitors in 2019-20.
Based on state parks data collected from July 2021 to February 2022, it looks like visitation will increase even more by the end of the current fiscal year.
The busiest time at Palisade is May to October, Monroe says. The peak month is July, particularly between the fourth and the 24th