I saw some local moms chatting about this place a few months back and even though I'm not generally excited by lakes (they usually smell, and have gross stuff in the water) I put it on our list ofplaces to check out this summer. We decided to pack up one morning and make the trip to find out what this place is all about. With packed lunches, towels, sand toys, towels and plenty of water we were on our way. The trip had the (slightly simplified) makings of a full on beach vacation with everything I packed up for the day. The kids were excited and off we went.
Depending on where you're location in or around the Lehigh Valley theres a number of ways to travel here. We opted to take 476 up to the Leighton Exit (Route 209). Its an easy drive, and once you are off the highway its just a short additional 10-15 minutes through the adorable town of Jim Thorpe before you arrive at Mauch Chunk Lake Park. From our location it was just a 39 minute ride!
The Beach area hosts a number of amenities including a full service snack bar with ice cream, Italian ice, snacks, hot foods and more. Bring cash to use at the snack bar if you are thinking of grabbing a snack. In addition is a shaded pavilion with picnic tables, bathrooms, changing areas and water fountains to refill your water bottles with if needed.
We arrived as the park opened up for the day (11AM) and you could see it had been freshly combed and there was no debris or garbage present. The beach is covered in a brownish sand which is not super deep and makes installing a beach umbrella pretty tough (we tried!) The sand is pretty great though for sand castles! I should also note that the water was beautifully clear, had no icky things to climb through before reaching the water and there was no stinky lake smell (I have a super sensitive nose!)
The water was lovely and warm and my kids didn't need any convincing to jump right in and try it out. They we're convinced we were at the beach ;), I didn't try to argue with them.