Zilpo Recreation Area

Area Status: Open
This area is Open
 

Zilpo Recreation Area is a 355-acre campground on Cave Run Lake on Cumberland Ranger District. This area has sites for tent camping and RV hookup.

Basic rental cabins sleep up to 7, with beds, table, porch, accessible ramp entrance and picnic tables. Bathrooms and water are located nearby at the bathhouse.

The campground has bathhouses with hot water showers, hiking and jogging trails, scenic overlooks, a boat ramp and a nearby country store. 

A sandy beach with a roped swimming area offers visitors a spectacular view of the lake.

Zilpo Mountain Trail #1802 begins across from D loop in Zilpo Campground and loops back around to near the entrance station

Zilpo Campground Map (pdf)

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Only registered campers are allowed at Zilpo after 10 p.m. 
Reservations: The cabins and campsites may be reserved at www.recreation.gov website. Call  877-444-6777 (877-833-6777 for the hearing impaired) or 606-780-7818.
Area Amenities: Accessible,Boat ramp,Tent camping,Camping trailer,Picnic tables,Toilets,Drinking water
Fees
  • $22 single/non-electric
  • $30 single/electric
  • $33 double/non-electric
  • Prime location $27/without additional fees
  • Zilpo Cabins $75/night. Up to 6 persons plus a vehicle.
Other fees:
  • RV dump station $6/use.
  • Site changes after one change $5
  • Extra vehicle $8/night
  • Annual pass for beach use is available for $55
  • Day use up to 5 persons/vehicle $10.
  • Walk-in/bicycle $2/person.
  • Thousand Trails annual day use/family $40.
  • Interpretive programs $8/vehicle.
  • Firewood $7.
Recreation Passes and Permits Making Reservations
Permit Info: A Special Use Permit is required for commercial activities (for example: fishing tournaments, rental of boats, trail rides, races, etc). A permit is also required for all noncommercial group uses involving more than 75 people.
Open Season: 3rd Friday in March - Last Sunday in October
Restrictions:
  • Food and trash storage mandatory, to reduce odors that attract bears. Unless cooking or eating, store your food and trash inside a hardtop vehicle, the trunk of a car or a bear-resistant container.  (Order DB-02-15)
  • Alcohol use is prohibited on national forest land and Kentucky lakes and waterways. (KRS 222.202)
  • Campfire must be DEAD OUT before leaving. (36 CFR 261.5)
  • No fires outside of a fire ring provided by the Forest Service or outside of a stove, grill or fireplace. (36 CFR 261.16)
  • The following are prohibited:
    • Failing to dispose of all garbage, including any paper, can, bottle, sewage, waste water or material, or rubbish either by removal from the site or area, or by depositing it into receptacles or at places provided for such purposes. (36 CFR 261.11)
    • Dumping of any refuse, debris, trash or litter brought as such from private property. (36 CFR 261.11)
    • Camping or maintaining a campsite for more than 14 consecutive days without having first terminated occupancy of that campground for a minimum of 10 days within a 31 day time frame. (Order DB-01-15) 
    • Entering or remaining in a designated campground between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. except for persons occupying the campsite. (Order DB-01-15)
    • Failing to remove all camping equipment or personal property when vacating the site. 36 CFR 261.16 (f).
    • Occupying any portion of the site for other than recreation purposes. 36 CFR 261.16 (a).
    • Placing, maintaining, or using camping equipment except in a place specifically designated or provided for such equipment. 36 CFR 261.16 (g).
    • Leaving camping equipment unattended for more than 24 hours without permission. 36 CFR 261.16 (i).
    • Failing to have at least one person occupy a camping area during the first night after camping equipment has been set up. 36 CFR 261.16 (h).
Closest Towns: Morehead, KY
Water: Drinking water is centrally located.
Restroom: Flush toilets and bathhouse are available.
Passes:
  • $22 single/non-electric
  • $30 single/electric
  • $33 double/non-electric
  • Prime location $27/without additional fees
  • Zilpo Cabins $75/night. Up to 6 persons plus a vehicle.
Other fees:
  • RV dump station $6/use.
  • Site changes after one change $5
  • Extra vehicle $8/night
  • Annual pass for beach use is available for $55
  • Day use up to 5 persons/vehicle $10.
  • Walk-in/bicycle $2/person.
  • Thousand Trails annual day use/family $40.
  • Interpretive programs $8/vehicle.
  • Firewood $7.
Operated By: Concessionaire - Thousand Trails
Information Center:
For Reservation/Camping Information:
5195 KY 801 S.
Morehead, KY 40351
606-780-7818
 
For General Information:
Cumberland Ranger District
2375 KY 801 South
Morehead, KY 40351
606-784-6428
606-776-5456

General Information

Directions:

From US 60, take KY 211 through Salt Lick. Turn onto Forest Service Road 129. Go 2.5 miles to Forest Service Road 918. Follow 918 approximately 8 miles to the Zilpo Recreation Area.


Accessibility:

The bathhouse is accessible. 


Parking:

Parking is available at the campsites, cabin, store, beach and bathhouses.


Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Activities


Camping & Cabins

Show detail SHOW

Outdoor Learning

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Water Activities

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Amenities

Picnic tables Tables are available at the campsites and the beach picnic area.
Drinking water Drinking water is centrally located.
Toilets Flush toilets and showers are available.
Boat ramp The Zilpo Recreation Area has a concrete boat ramp.
Tent camping Tent pads with lantern posts occur at each site.
Accessible The bathhouse is accessible.
Camping trailer 30 sites have electric hookups for RVs.


https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/dbnf/recreation/recarea/?recid=39322