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Maine campgrounds report slow start to the summer with rainy weather

A campsite at Lily Bay State Park on Moosehead Lake in May 2022.
Esta Pratt-Kielley
Maine Public
A campsite at Lily Bay State Park on Moosehead Lake in May 2022.

Across the state there has been a slow start to the camping season as the rainy weather keeps people inside.

At Sagadahoc Bay Campground on Georgetown Island, owner Pat Kosalka said she has seen a spike in canceled reservations and campers leaving early.

Kosalka said families may try to brave the weather, and get tired of the damp conditions, ending their trip early. But she hopes they'll be back when the sun comes out.

Brian Fay, a manager at Lily Bay State Park in Greenville, said the park has had quite a few empty campsites this summer.

"I would say on paper we're pretty much fully booked, but we get a lot of no-call no-shows, which are basically people that they see the forecast and are like 'Oh, we've got seven days of rain for our reservation' and they just don't show up," Fay said.

Another effect of the rain has been more mosquitoes this year at Lily Bay. Staff have been hard at work to keep up with the fast growing grass and the high water levels at Moosehead Lake have left a shrinking beach for visitors to enjoy.

"Typically people, when they are camping out at the campground, they want sunny weather, they don't want too many mosquitos, and we are just sort of not meeting that expectation," Fay said. "But obviously that is outside of our control, unfortunately."

However, Fay said that while many out-of-state visitors will cancel trips, Mainers are more likely to stick it out.

Kaitlyn Budion is Maine Public’s Bangor correspondent, joining the reporting team after several years working in print journalism.