Located on Lake Martin, the Maxwell/Gunter Recreation Area offers boat and equipment rentals, rental trailers, cabins, and camping.
Lake Martin Recreation Area Featured
Type of site
$350 (Waterfront $400)
$280 (Waterfront $325)
$40 - $60
Sept 5-8, 2014
I agree with the last review 100% and this place is in dire need of a good cleaning inside and out. It was almost deserted and unless you want to fish only there's nothing to do. The beach is covered in feces. We had a good time on the lake and was in a good location but probably would not go back. I am surprised the Air Force doesn't inspect their facilities and more surprised they say it is a military facility but do not even help with funding. I know a tornado messed up a lot of trees but that has nothing to do with cleanliness. On a good note the staff was nice and we had a great time on the pontoon boat we rented.
First the positives - The campground sits on Lake Martin just outside of Dadeville, AL. The view to the lake was beautiful. There are several shaded sites which is nice. Unfortunately the CG is not well maintained. The manager (??) told me they have a had difficult time for the past 3 years and are barely making it. He said he was short of help and didn't know if they could survive another year. I realize that all rec facilities must be able to survive on their own. He hinted that this CG downfall started when MWR stopped funding and when the "full timers" were made to move out. I checked out the bathhouse and decided I would not use it. Again poorly maintained and not very clean. The site we were assigned to as well as 3 or 4 next to us were gravel and narrow. It was impossible for us to completely level our TT. The sides of the parking area had a severe slope of 2-3 feet. In order to walk down to the lake edge you had to carefully maneuver down that slope. They did have some broken cinder blocks in the gravel as "steps" but it did not help much. Dangerous. I slipped a couple of time. We were to stay 3 nights but left after 2 nights. Didn't feel comfortable on this narrow gravel parking pad (only big enough for our TT), the fact that we couldn't really get level and were at the lake edge. Didn't want our trailer rolling into the lake. To top it off the fish weren't biting. We stayed here in a 30' TT. Sad, it could be a very nice campground. We probably won't stay here again.
18 May 2013
Enjoyed the two day stay. The area we stayed in says it is big rig friendly, we have a 35ft fifth wheel and believe me it was tight. Got in and parked sites we were in had great view of the lake and were wooded. Many of the sites in the park need maintenance due to past storms. Staff are helpful and knowledgeable of the area. The bathhouse we used was old but clean. Laundry was a single washer and dryer but worked well. Nice visit, but could use some work on sites.
1997 to 2012
Well, finally all the whiners about us old timers have won. The park closed on Sep 30 and all of us old timers have had to move. The park is scheduled to open again on Apr 1 and be open until Sep 30. It is everyone's opinion that after the closing on Sep 30, 2013, that will be the end of Maxwell/Gunter Rec Area. I had a place at the park for 15 years and never had a problem with day campers. I did have several day campers talk about us permanent campers and I was quick to tell them that us permanent campers paid the bills after Sep 1 thru Mar 31 when no one was ever seen. Fishermen would want to be at the park for a week or two when the Crappie were biting. Other than that you never saw them until the following year. We did have a couple of cranky old retired guys but if you were intimidated by a cranky old retired guy then maybe you should choose another profession. There were and have always been available sites for people that wanted to become long time campers. When the park closed there were at least 10 to 15 nice water front sites available for renting. Not all people will ever be pleased. My wife and I took a 5,000 mile trip in our motor home this past spring. We stayed in some of the most beautiful parks out West. There was always someone grumbling about something. While Maxwell/Gunter did not have all the luxuries of a motor home resort, it was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been too. It was my sanctuary for 15 years. It is my hope that it will remain open but I seriously doubt it. I just hope that in the summer of 2014 when it does not open that some of you that did the most complaining bring your family and you remember how beautiful the Lake was and I hope you are sorry that you complained enough to shut this place down. Shame on You !!!!!!!!!!
March 2008 - July 2012
My family and I have rented a RV site for the last 4 years. We have been visiting this area for over 12 years when we have been stationed nearby. We absolutely love this place. It is a great vacation get away. It provides wonderful opportunities to have quality family time. We also have had several work gatherings here as well. Our military friends and co-workers are always in aw by the beauty of the lake. Several of our friends (active duty) have joined us and hold permanent places. So don’t be scared away from the previous postings about the cranky retired folks. :) Lake Martin is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been, and we have been stationed from New York to Alaska. Yes, I agree it isn’t the most lavish of all facilities and a little work is needed here or there, but the people who work there are very kind and always helpful. If you are looking for a relaxing, slow paced vacation this is the place to stay.
14 Jan 2012
The Maxwell/Gunter Rec. Area is back in operation. It sustained a lot of damage from the tornado, but the staff is working to get everything back in order.
23 Aug 2010
This Rec Area is a joke. If they didn't have a sign that says it's military, this old soldier would have thought I found the last old fashioned fish camp for homesteaders and other old timers. They claim 66 site but in reality they have 5 if you happen to go for a few days. The rest are full of "longtimers", read homesteaders. The 5 sites they do have are rough, uneven and way overpriced at $20 a day for w/s/e ,no cable, no local over the air TV. It is scenic with the lake being very nice. I would not recommend this place unless you are looking for a place to hunker down for the rest of your days. Hard to believe its an Air Force facility. The only thing they did well was refund my 4 day fee when I left.
Our family went to Lake Martin in March 2010 had a blast hiking, swimming, cooking out and such BUT when we went to do some fishing we soon figured what the man was talking about on this blog.. The people who are living there were not very nice to our family we went to go on the dock that is out there and an older man walked out to tell us were were going on his dock. I thought he was joking but there soon after we realized he wasn't at all but very serious. He had a swing set up, outdoor grass, satellite, flower beds everything you would have at your HOUSE set up there. I have to say that made us very angry that this was a REC facility for military members to enjoy but it seemed very much like we were at a trailer park. WOW!! I will go back but I really hope that they figure this issue out and do something about it. Act like it is a campground and not a trailer park!! PLZZZZ
May 28-31, 2010
The ratings for this location are definitely for the cabins, trailers and marina. The lake is beautiful. Of the 76 sites advertised I only found 5 that were for the RV traveler and could not get conformation from any of the staff. The rest are permanently occupied by RV’s that stay there year round. They have decks and additions built on. Some even have private docks. They seemed to be used by the owners and their families for weekend getaways and vacations. We were to stay for two weeks but left after 3 nights. My wife went and checked in at the Marina and they gave her directions to our site. That was the last we saw anyone from the staff. We had site 52 which has full hook ups. The site is rock (not gravel) and just wide enough for the width of your axle. The sides then sloop down from there. It took 6 inches of leveling blocks on the right side to get it level. While standing on the ground at 5’9” tall I was on my tip toes to open the door. My wife had to balance on the step to get the door open. The area around the site is dirt with some weeds. The picnic table is on a cement slab. Site 53 had 4” of leveling blocks. Site 54 was not occupied but appeared to be a little more level but you have to back between 2 large trees, you may have a couple of feet on each side. 55 and 56 are permanent. 56 looks like nobody has been their in several years, dirty with pine needles and leaves. 57 is next one of the cabins and is level. It is built up with a retaining wall so with your rig to one side once you come off your steps you may have a step or two before you go over a 3’ foot retaining wall. The only other site I saw was by the beach and it appeared to be ok. We got 3 channels which were all PBS. I could not get any satellite reception from my site because of the trees. The town is 8 miles away. Wall Mart is 23 miles. If you have question that can not be answered by the reservation desk at Maxwell AFB they will tell you to call the campground. You may or may not get a call back. I didn’t. You would think that a campground that has the year round occupancy that this one has, the few sites they have for the rest of us who are Serving or who Have Served would be in the best conditions. This is not a Military campground it is a private trailer park on OUR LAND.
Mar 19 - 24 2010
Great place for peace and quiet and to enjoy the lake. Did get a chance for walks and to sit by the lake, feed the very tame ducks who came to visit everyday and watch the sun go down. Asked about the 'full timers' they were there before the policy for max stays was in effect, as the manager said they help pay the bills for the slow times. One thing to mention that the town of Dadeville is approx 6 mls from the lake, at the closest Walmart it 14 mls. So you may want to stock up for the stay. Will be sure to come back given the chance.
March 13-15 of 2010
My husband and I and our twin daughters just returned from a weekend staying in Chalet 3. We had a wonderful time and the facilities are awesome!! One of the staff named Amanda was so very friendly and so welcoming! We plan on bringing the whole family back in August and are counting the days! Brenda S.
Dec 31, 2009 to January 2, 2010
We just arrived home after spending New Years Eve and Day at Chalet 1. It was the perfect place to bring in the new year!! It is an oasis of peace and quiet and with no distractions it was so very restful! We plan on making another reservation to bring my sister down for her birthday and we cannot wait until we are back!! Doug was so very friendly as was a young man with the name of Lindsay. We are so blessed to be able to stay at such a wonderful facility!!
December 3, 2009
We stopped by for only a one night stay. Although it is the "slow" season, we didn't see many sites open for camping. Actually, it seemed that 90% of the sites are occupied by long-term residents. Although, hardly anyone was around. It appears they keep their RV there and only visit occasionally. While I understand the financial benefit to the campground for long-term residents, many other military campgrounds have found a good compromise. I'm not sure that compromise is here. MANY of the long-term residents have built docks on the lake at their site, but has marked them as "Private Use Only". What? A military campground allowing PRIVATE modifications and restricting use to them!?!? One long-term resident has even built a building connected to their trailer. "Homesteading" has gone overboard here! It no longer seems like a military RECREATION facility, rather a military HOUSING area. But it's not all bad - this is a good, quiet location on the lake. It appears there's plenty of activities for the family during the prime season. Doug, the office staff was friendly and helpful.
The couple that run the camp are wonderful folks! The site was gorgeous - right on the water with nothing but peace and calm!! There are several LONG term campers who have a little ATTITUDE!! Retirees should not forget who owns the property we are VISITING! Even if we are paying... Camp was very clean - employees were all friendly - roads in good shape -- just a wonderful experience except for the long term folks attitude's.. Would go back in a heart beat!!
Aug 18-20 & Nov. 5-7 2009
My husband & I absolutely love this place. We stayed in Chalet 1 the first time and loved it so much we brought my mom & step-father back to Chalet 3 for her birthday. The staff to include Johnny Davis, Doug and Penny Hooks are incredibly nice and so helpful and caring! We are already making plans to return again soon. Maxwell Gunter is so blessed to have such a special facility and such wonderful staff!
22-25 May 2009
We stayed in Travel Trailer #80. It was nestled near the lake, with a small path down to the water. It was also a short walk to the marina, which worked well for us to fish with our young son. The trailer was a nice rig and so was the location. I agree with some of the previous posts: there does seem to be a lot of homesteaders, who have secured the best camping spots. If we had our camper here, we would have had a hard time getting into most of the remaining spots. That is our biggest complaint. The folks at the marina seemed very nice and helpful, but do not expect much of their country store. We did discover Oskar's restaurant which was affordable and good food (and a nice place to stop on our way out.) It rained most of the weekend and our trailer leaked a little where one tip out extended. But it was fine otherwise. The outdoor furniture was covered in mildew and infested with bugs so we used our own. I also had to clean the refrigerator, which also had some considerable mildew growing. It looked as though the previous occupants did not give it a good scrub down after they left, but it only took a few minutes for me to clean. Despite these minor inconveniences, we will go again and had a nice weekend stay.
November 23-30, 2008
This is a very nice campground. The lake this time of year is low as I was told they lower it in the winter. I was here for a week. Of the 66 RV sites and 11 cabins/rental trailers, I think I was the only person here except staff. The staff is very friendly and helpful. The bath houses are mostly clean. They are old and in need of TLC, but overall good. The floor paint is worn and peeling. There are three bath houses that have a washer/dryer in them. Bath house #3 in the area I was in (I was in space 57) the washer/dryer is in an exposed area so they are disconnected for the winter. Had to go to #2 to do laundry. $0.75 wash and $0.75 dry. Washer run about half an hour and dryers are 45 min. Most of the campers here appear to be here for the long haul. A lot have decks built by them, regular stairs to get into them, some skirting around them, fences, etc. Overall, it is a great place if you want peace and quiet at least this time of year. There were 4 empty spaces while I was here.
21 June 2008
Maxwell/Gunter Rec Area is a very wonderful place to go. I've been to many lakes in my life and I got to say that Lake Martin is one of the best and cleanest lakes I have ever been on. The water is very clear and in the summer, it's very warm to jump in. The Rec Area is just wonderful. Has a very nice beach and a playground for the kids to play. Many RV sites and the new trailers are very nice and comfortable. They just added new screen-in decks on the trailers and that really makes a big difference. If you are like my family and myself and love being in the country to get away from everything to RELAX, then this is the place you need to be!! If you can not do without the city life and enjoy nature, then you need not come, because this is Mother Nature at her finest. The people that run the Rec Area are just wonderful. They will go out of their way to help, you can really tell that they care about the Rec Area. I can not say enough about them. I will give them an A+ on any rating scale.
8 June 08
The Lake Martin Rec Area now has 11 new mobile homes with new screened in decks and new patio funiture. There has been alot of construction at the rec area, which is why most have said it was trashy looking. New docks have been built at the marina. The Rec area has made a lots of improvements this past year, and the place looks wonderful! The park is out of the way from everything, that just makes your stay more relaxing. They do offer boat rentals, pontoon boats, ski boats, bass boats, and sea-doos, but be sure to call 7 days in advance. The staff at Lake Martin are doing there best to make your stay worth while. I recommend that you visit the rec area just once and hope that you experience the same pleasures that I have experienced. Note: Lake is Now at Full POOL!!!
1-10 MAR 2008
Difficult to find and really out of the way, but all the staff are VERY friendly. No cable and just one TV station (PBS), so plan to watch DVDs or read when not enjoying the outdoors. Laundry is 75 cents for washers and 75 for dryers but the one located nearest to us isn't plugged in till the end of March due to possible freezing. Lots of walking for those who like the exercise. The roads are hilly and numerous and a walking trail too, but we were told there are a lot of ticks and scorpions. We didn't see any while we were there. I asked if there were "gators" in the lake and were told that there were "but they don't bother ya none". Hmmm.... Tiny town of Dadeville is about 8 miles away for shopping. Lots of trailers onsite but they were mostly all empty while we were there. We had most all of the place to ourselves, which has its advantages. This campground is mainly long term campers. The transient usually don't come until the summer months, we're told, when the staff says it is full. NICE large beach area. Garbage cans are at each campsite, so no trips to the dumpster are necessary.