Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park located near Dawson Springs has some of the most beautiful forested land in the commonwealth. The 15,331-acre Pennyrile Forest is a showcase for Kentucky’s magnificent hardwood trees. On July 9, 1954 Pennyrile State Resort Park (originally called Pennyrile Forest State Park), became a part of the Kentucky State Parks System. The area that contains Pennyrile State Resort Park had two state parks in the 1930s and 1940s, Pennyrile State Park and Dawson Springs State Park. The Dawson Springs facility had 457 acres located near the Outwood Veteran’s Hospital. The University of Kentucky obtained a deed to this property in the 1950s and made it a 4-H Club Camp. Between 1948 and 1955, work continued on the Pennyrile property to establish a state resort park. The state constructed a rustic lodge for visitors and made a number of improvements to the site. This continued until 1954 when the Kentucky Parks System took final oversight of the Pennyrile site.
Pennyrile now has 863 acres with a 56-acre lake. The state had a new lodge constructed and with the completion of Lake Beshear in 1962, gave the area a 712-acre lake located in both Caldwell and Christian Counties.
The rustic wood and stone Pennyrile Lodge, with 24 rooms, sits serenely on a high cliff overlooking Pennyrile Lake. Open year-round. Rooms available by late afternoon. Lodge room check-out by 11:00am, local time. A limited number of lodge rooms will be available for pets. No more than two pets are allowed per room/cottage. Or, if you prefer the outdoors, enjoy the beauty of the Pennyrile Forest in the 36-site campground. The campground features utility hook ups, a dump station, and one central service building with showers, rest rooms, and a laundry. Pets are allowed if restrained. Closed Nov 1 – Mar 31
If you have horses bring them along. Pennyrile Forest offers 8 pull-through campsites specifically designed for horse owners. These sites feature electric, water and sewer hook-ups. Each site has its own corresponding hitching posts for up to four horses, picnic table, lantern hanger & fire ring/grill combo. Horse campers have access to all campground amenities, which include bathhouses, laundry area and playgrounds. A new 1.25 mile horse trail near the campground connects horseback riders to the 40+ miles of horse trails on the adjacent Pennyrile State Forest.
For a fun-filled day on the lake, visit the boat dock. Rental pedal boats, row boats, canoes, kayaks, and trolling motors are available. Don’t forget your fishing pole! Pennyrile Lake is home to bluegill, channel catfish, crappie, and largemouth bass. Larger motorboats are restricted from Pennyrile Lake. Lake Beshear, located four miles from the lodge, also offers fishing challenges. Larger motorboats are allowed there. Forgot your fishing gear? Borrow some from us at the front desk, or boat dock. A Kentucky Fishing License is required.
PARK HOURS & FEES:
Contact Park Office.
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