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Fontainebleau State Park




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General Information

Description - Setting Fit for Kings

From the time you stumble upon the ruins of the old sugar mill, drive past the historic oak grove and then discover the vast expanse of Lake Pontchartrain, you'll realize this park is something special.

The crumbling brick ruins of a sugar mill built in 1829 by Bernard de Marigny de Mandeville, founder of the nearby town of Mandeville, suggest an interesting history for this site, and indeed there is. The wealthy Marigny developed this area across Lake Pontchartrain from New Orleans as a sugar plantation until 1852. The plantation income helped support his lavish lifestyle.

He named his large land holding Fontainebleau after the beautiful forest near Paris, a favorite recreation area of the French kings.

Attractions - Along the Lakeshore

The day use area of the 2,800-acre park is located on the shore of Lake Pontchartrain. Numerous picnic sites, complete with tables and grills, and an adjacent pavilion are nestled under the oak trees in sight of the lake. On a clear day, visitors can see the lake dotted with multi-colored sailboats of all sizes and types. Fontainebleau contains an area accessible to Lake Pontchartrain from where wind surfers and small non-motorized boats may be launched.

The sandy beach is a delight for sunbathers, while the nearby swimming pool offers refreshment from the summer heat. Two pavilions are located along both sides of the pool's bathhouse. The pool is open six days a week during the summer. It is closed on Mondays, except on holidays.

Large cleared areas next to the picnic sections are handy for sporting events. An old railroad track that runs through the park has been converted into the Tammany Trace as a part of the Rails to Trails program. It is a wonderful route for cycling, hiking and in-line skating. The park's nature trail is a favorite of nature lovers. Interpretive signs along the trail will help you identify many of the common trees and shrubs. Always be on the lookout for birds and other animals. Over 400 different species live in and around Fontainebleau. Some species to look for include the endangered red cockaded woodpecker, turkey, opossum,squirrel and other native Louisiana creatures.

The Fontainebleau Birding Guide is a good resource for birding enthusiasts to identify the numerous species found in the area. Bordered on three sides by water--Lake Pontchartrain, Bayou Cane and Bayou Castine--and characterized by a convergence of diverse ecosystems, it has a multitude of habitats for birds. Fontainebleau offers an excellent opportunity for you to discover the wildlife of the marsh, pines, mixed hardwoods, open fields and lake. Join the park naturalist for a variety of programs or hikes which bring these resources to life. Spend the Night

For the overnight visitor, Fontainebleau has several different types of accommodations.

In the camping area, there are 126 improved campsites with water, electricity, barbeque grills and picnic tables at each. An adjacent bathhouse and dump station are also provided. In addition, there are 37 unimproved campsites and a primitive camping area for those who want to "rough it." There are also 200 undesignated campsites.

The park also offers three group camps. Camp Number 1, which can sleep up to 150 people, and Camp Number 2, which sleeps 30, are located close together near the beachfront. A nearby swimming pool is available for guests at the three group camps and lodge. Camp Number 3 is located in another part of the park and can accommodate 65 people. A fishing pier with freshwater fishing is available at this camp. All group camps include dormitory sleeping areas and fully equipped kitchens.

There is also a primitive camping area, the Tepee area, which is used by Scouts and other organizations. Located near Camps Number 1 and 2, this area has access to running water and a bathhouse, but no other improvements are provided.

Just across U.S. Highway 190 from the main part of the park is the Fontainebleau State Park Lodge. The Lodge includes sleeping facilities for ten people, with a maximum capacity of twelve, as well as a kitchen and two baths.

This park, named after a place for kings, is truly fit for a king. Come visit us and receive the royal treatment at Fontainebleau State Park.

Recreation - fishing,swimming, bird watching

Climate - Southern Louisiana experiences a subtropical climate that's warm throughout the year. Winter months bring low temperatures near 40 degrees F and highs above 55 degrees F. During the summer expect high temperatures to reach 95 degrees F frequently, with mid-afternoon showers. Humidity is highest in August and September. Northern regions of the state have cooler winters and somewhat warmer summers than the south. Low temperatures in the winter dip into the high 30s and highs reach 60 degrees F. July and August are the hottest months with average high temperatures reaching 100 degrees. Humidity is slightly lower in the northern uplands and the average rainfall in May is higher than any other month.

Location - located southeast of Mandeville on US 190.

To reserve a campsite, group camp, picnic pavilion or the lodge, call 1-877-CAMP-N-LA toll free (877-226-7652).


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: Clara McNulty (Crowley, LA)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: I went tent camping at the end of 4 long weeks without our Louisiana rain. I went with Lola my dog, and we met up with two other friends, also tent camping in separate sites nearby. It was exceptionally hot at Fountianebleu State Park (102 degrees as I drove through Baton Rouge). Later it became humid and actually did rain, a welcome respite from the heat. All that to say that the weather was primed for the proliferation of ticks and redbugs. And my tent was way back in the trees. Well, I got one, a tick that is...and frankly it was a good thing, as well as a God thing, that my friend from another campsite actually saw the top of my head where it was lodged. It really was Providence. She's a mere 5 foot two, and I'm 5'11". I just looked down at my feet for a split second, and she spotted it. This is a woman, mind you, who is not big on details like that. But yet she sure enough honed in on that bug like white on rice... saying...."Oh, sister , he's not moving, he's IN". "Yikes", I said "IN!? Get him out". She said, "no way will I be responsible for not getting the whole thing out, I might make it worse". She was actually being wise, because it's true, the entire tick, head and all HAVE to come out. And ticks can be quite dangerous.(Thank you sistahgirl.) So, I dashed off on my bike(dog in tow) to the Park Host family...(great folks, the very best camp hosts I've ever encountered, and I ain't kidding- Annie Oakley and Red Derringer- names changed to protect the innocent---no, just to be funny, see I keep forgetting Annie's hubby's name) In any event, red headed Annie ( a bit un-nerved seeing the tick on the crown of my head) dashed into her RV, made a call, and sent me to the gate to see the Ranger). Ranger Dillon,,James Dillon, (his real name, too) sat me down after I arrived (...like I was in a barber chair, he said). He succesfully hunted down the special equipment needed for a tick-ectomy. He then did a two minute procedure that got that elusive critter out of my head. What a relief! I was so grateful that I wanted to send his boss this report: To whom it may concern (Mr. Dillon's boss, Sir or Ma'am), Your employee, James Dillon made my stay at Fountainebleu State Park not only a unique experience, but one that ended up much less stressful than it might have turned out without his expertise, professionalism, and kind words. I think you should not only keep him around, but give him a pat on the back, as well. I sure did appreciate him being there. He quickly became a good friend, and likely a long time friend, to boot...(his fortune cookie said so, huh, Mr Dillon?).It was an adventure. Thanks ya'll, for being part of it. Cb Mc PS. Needless to say, I moved my tent out into an open area for my last of three nights at Fountainebleu- a very diverse and beautiful Louisiana State Park. PPS. Boss, please let me know if this posting reached you. I'm in hopes that it did, and that Mr. Dillon got an "ATTABOY".He most assuredly deserves it.


More Information

Contact Information:
Fontainebleau State Park, 67825 Highway 190 , Mandeville, LA, 70448, Phone: 985-624-4443 or 1-888-677-3668
, fntbleau@crt.state.la.us

Additional Information:
Louisiana State Parks -
New Orleans Area -

Links:
Louisiana State Parks Website - Official agency website.

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