Stephanie and Jeremy visited Mama Gertie’s Hideaway over a decade ago (with Max and Theo) soon after they bought their first pop up camper. It was a magical campground that made a lasting impression. Many improvements have been made over the past ten years, so they both felt that it was a great time to get a fresh review. Thankfully, long-time RV Atlas correspondent Casita Dean May recently visited Mama Gertie’s Hideaway, and was game for a fresh podcast review and guest blog post.
To listen to Jeremy interview Casita Dean May about Mama Gertie’s Hideaway and the surrounding area, click on the media player above. To check out Dean’s blog post about Mama Gertie’s Hideaway and the region around Asheville, please see below.
The guest post below was written by Casita Dean May.
Location of Mama Gertie’s Hideaway
Momma Gertie’s Hideaway is conveniently located on I-40 just a few minutes east of Asheville, NC (14 minutes/11 miles) or a few minutes west of Black Mountain, NC (9 minutes/6 miles). Mama Gertie’s is less than 1 mile south off I-40!
Asheville and the regional highlights will be discussed later; however, it is important to note that Mama Gertie’s is located in the heart of the southern Appalachian mountains with easy access to Asheville, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and so much more. Arguably, this area is one the best spots in the eastern United States for camping and outdoor recreation.
Mama Gertie’s Hideaway Campground Details
Mama Gertie’s is a private campground that is relatively small with only 45 RV sites. It is very unique in that the campground is more or less carved into the side of a mountain! It has three “tiers” of camping integrated into the hill side. The campground is in the woods with lots of shade in the bottom tier of sites. The top tier is flat with no trees on the sites, but the views are spectacular.
There are three bath houses to more or less correspond with the 3 tiers of camping. Mama Gertie’s main building at the bottom of the campground that serves as an entrance to the campground includes a bath house for the bottom tier of sites. The other two tiers include bath houses as well. The bath houses are nice, relatively modern, clean, and pleasant to use.
Price Range and Ease of Booking
Reservations can be made on-line or by calling 877-686-4258 and you can book 6 months in advance. We had no problem making a reservation on-line. A random check of rates for all tier sites throughout the spring and summer yielded the following:
Tier 1 – $75 to $85 per night, tier 2 – $95 to $105 per night, and tier 3 was $105 to $167.50 per night.
There is a 10% Good Sam discount. When you reserve, you are not guaranteed that site, but you will get that site type. Also, you must check-in by 5 pm (off-season) and by 6 pm (high-season). You cannot check-in after dark due to the hilly terrain of the campground.
Details about the Sites at Mama Gertie’s Hideaway
- 38 of the 45 RV sites have full-hookups (the other 7 have electric and water – with 4 of them having beautiful views of the creek).
- 30 of the sites have 50 amp service while the remaining 15 sites have 30 amp service.
- The campground is unique with over half of the sites being pull-through sites.
- There are 5 cabins.
- There are 6 tent sites.
WiFi/Cell Service and Customer Service at Mama Gertie’s Hideaway
Mama Gertie’s does have WiFi. It worked fine for email, social media, and light surfing. Cell service was fine as well. The customer service was pleasant and professional and the grounds crew was very active in keeping the campground well maintained.
Amenities at Mama Gertie’s Hideaway
- Propane station
- Firewood delivered to your site
- Dog park
- Camp store
- Fitness center
Insider Details about Mama Gertie’s Hideaway
Mama Gertie’s is a unique campground:
- If you want sites with grand views, then sites on the top tier, 33 to 37, are exquisite. However, there is no shade, so this could be hot depending on the time of the year.
- Sites 18 to 21 are electric/water only and relatively inexpensive and offer intimate sites that back up to a nice creek.
- Since the campground is terraced into the hill, there is not really room for swimming pools, playgrounds, etc. Bicycling would also be difficult.
- We still walked the campground, but keep in mind that walking the campground involves serious elevation changes.
- Despite the campground being integrated into the hillside, it is relatively easy to maneuver into nearly all sites since they are pull-through sites.
- A customer service representative will also escort you to your site.
- Top Secret Tip – Mama Gertie’s offers off-season rates between November 1st and March 31st.
- We found that if we stayed a week (7 days) during the off-season, we could book a nice site in Tier 1 for only $45 per night!!!
I am not sure that this is really a ding given the topography of the campground; however, the campground is well-lit at night to the extent that the security lights can aggravate the enjoyment of a dark evening. Perhaps more indirect lighting along the ground of the roads could be effective but less intrusive.
Regional Highlights and Activities Near Mama Gertie’s Hideaway
There is literally so much to see and do in this region that any listing of highlights and activities will be grossly incomplete. However, are some things that we did:
- Biltmore Estates
- Blue Ridge Parkway
- Mount Mitchell
- Highest point east of the Mississippi
- Little Switzerland
- Switzerland Inn Chalet Restaurant
- Crabtree Falls
- North Carolina Arboretum
- Lake Lure
- Black Mountain/Montreat
- Black Mountain Kitchen & Ale House
- Recommend – Calcutta Hot Chicken
- Tomahawk Lake
- Dripalator Coffee Shop
- Montreat Village
- Old Fort (just east of Black Mountain)
- Catawba Falls
- Old Fort Ride House
- Cycle Shop with coffee and beer!
- Highly recommend the molasses cookies with coffee!
- Pisgah National Forest
Laura and I have camped about 300 nights in the Casita over the last six years to ten different states towing over 25,000 miles. There are many of these places that we would like to visit again; however, if there is one place that we would consider living, it would be the Asheville area. The beauty, activities, and culture are exceptional. Of course we are not the first ones to come to that conclusion! We look forward to visiting the Asheville area again soon. Mama Gertie’s is a wonderful and unique campground to use as a basecamp for exploring the area.