State Park offers myriad of activities

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By Michelle Hughes

Whether you are an angler or wrangler; a hiker or mountain biker; or  want to camp out under the stars, Spencer County has just the place for you. The Taylorsville Lake State Park is just minutes from Main Street and offers over 2,500 acres of beautiful country and numerous activities.

For the avid camper, the park offers 45 RV sites with electric and water hook-ups.  Each site is flat and spacious, allowing for easy access for large recreational vehicles.  There are 15 sites with water for the more primitive campers that prefer to pitch a tent.  Included in the camping area are two playgrounds and two bathhouses with laundry facilities as well as horseshoe pits and a sand volleyball court.  Camping season officially opened this month.
Taylorsville Lake State Park is well known for its equestrian amenities.  There are 10 campground sites with water and electric set aside for those who wish to bring their horses.  Sites have hitching posts and are spacious enough for trailers.  A day use field is also available for no charge for those who wish to bring their horse-filled trailers, park and take advantage of the trails.  This area also includes a wash station for horses.
Included in the state park are 24 miles of trails for hiking, horseback riding or mountain biking.  According to Park Manager Eddie Moore, a grant has been received to improve the current trail to a wet weather trail.  A wet weather trail means that the trail will never shut down because of weather.  It will have gravel added to make trail conditions more passable when the ground is wet.
The park is home to all sorts of wildlife found throughout this region.  For the animal lovers and bird watchers, a day spent in the park may include seeing red tail hawks, great blue herrons and even sea gulls as well as the large pileated woodpecker.  A drive through the park in the early morning or late evening will surely give sight to many deer that travel the area.
For those who love the water, Taylorsville Lake State Park sits on the 3,050-acre Taylorsville Lake which offers a multitude of activities.  Taylorsville Lake is host to several fishing clubs and tournaments.  Bass tournaments began April 1 and are held three times a week throughout the summer months.  
Competitive anglers as well as fishermen of all levels enjoy the variety of species the lake has to offer such as largemouth bass, hybrid striped bass, catfish, bluegill and crappie.
Want to enjoy a day on the lake, boating, skiing, tubing or swimming?  The park offers the Possum Ridge boat ramp located 3/4 of a mile just inside the park entrance as well as three other ramps located around the lake.  A privately owned marina offers boat rentals as well as food and gas purchases for anyone visiting the lake.
Taylorsville Lake is a wonderful place for those who love to kayak or canoe.  There are many areas that offer quiet and calm waters away from the motorized boats for those wishing to row into the sunset.  The lake is home to the Louisville Kayak Club.  Rentals are not available through the state park.
For fitness and fun, Taylorsville Lake State Park is proud to be a part of the Kentucky State Parks 5K Race Series.  Five state parks will offer courses to run or walk on specific dates this summer.  The race to be held in Taylorsville Lake State Park, The Possum Ridge 5K, will be June 8 at 8 a.m.  All ages and skill levels are welcome. Runners or walkers can paricipate in all five races and earn points for an overall championship.
One activity for the whole family to participate in is the 2013 Family Adventure Quest.  This is a digital photo and trivia scavenger hunt that can be completed at your own pace as you visit any of the Kentucky State Parks. Visit parks.ky.gov for more details.
The future holds some exciting activities that are currently underway in the state park. A championship disc golf course is in development and is proposed to be open by next spring.  An archery range is also a project that Moore hopes to have completed sometime next year.
The Taylorsville Lake State Park has plenty to offer for locals as well as the many others who travel here from neighboring counties and states.  The park is free to everyone with charges only for camping sites.  If you are looking to host a club outing or a family reunion, the park also offers two covered shelters with seating for up to 100 people in each.  For more information on activies including the 5K race series, contact Moore at Eddie.Moore@ky.gov.