Le Petite Ten Mile River Camp: A Luxurious Campsite in the Western Catskills
The drive through Sullivan County is a familiar and nostalgic one. Cruising on Route 97 as it snakes along the Delaware River, I pass the tubing sites, kayak rental shops and campgrounds that I frequented as a child. I remember the gloriously slow, idle summers when we ate hot dogs with abandon and sometimes forgot to apply sunscreen.
Almost two decades later, I’m back for my first camping experience since childhood. I turn onto a quiet, tree-laden dirt road in Narrowsburg and arrive at Le Petite Ten Mile River Camp, a stylishly outfitted campsite overlooking a trout stream. Le Petite Camp is one of the unique sites offered through Tentrr, the outdoorsman’s answer to Airbnb that connects campers to privately owned land. This particularly tranquil campground is the property of Juliette Hermant of Maison Bergogne and Anie Stanley of Woolheater Wares, who decorated the site with the well-worn antiques and curiosities from their abundant inventory.
In a way, this camping excursion is the perfect transition for this now grown up city dweller, spoiled by convenience and limited to rather moderate interactions with nature. In place of the cramped nylon tent I shared with my sisters is an almost extravagantly spacious canvas shelter decked out with a wood-burning stove, French linens and aged ephemera. Gone are the processed meats and enamelware, replaced with gourmet cheeses, spreads and wine purchased from the grocery in town, served on speckled stoneware plates and in petite wine glasses. The amenities may have changed (to my liking, I must admit), but the simple and sentimental pleasures of camping have not. We spend hours drinking around the campfire until it’s reduced to embers, comforted by total seclusion and the promise of an air mattress. There’s no need for the white noise app on my cell phone; the rush of the river lulls me right to sleep.
- Location: Narrowsburg, NY
Private tent and deck overlooking the Ten Mile River
Access to trails and local chartered fishing tours
Tentrr provides access to secluded properties, offering a more private and environmentally sound camping experience for guests. Le Petite River Camp is just 100 yards down the road from Smokey Belles, the artists’ homestead that Anie built.
Anie worked closely with Tentrr to determine the best site for the camp. Perched above Ten Mile River, the tent and deck offer sweeping views of the site and provide the perfect spot to read and sip coffee in the morning.
An air mattress made with soft linen sheets was a welcome upgrade from the shabby sleeping bag of my youth. The vintage throws and map are part of Juliette’s offerings at Maison Bergogne and, along with the rest of the furnishings, are available for purchase.
The lift top writer’s desk dates to the late 19th century, where it was likely used in the office of a general store or a railroad station. Its utilitarian look captures the spirit Anie and Juliette sought to evoke in the design. “We love simple objects that are functional, but pleasurable,” says Juliette.
For the modest decorations, Anie and Juliette drew inspiration from naturalist Henry Thoreau. In the colder months, Juliette adds an Icelandic pelt made from a local sheep farmer and stocks the tent with American made beeswax candles from her shop. “It’s important to showcase what’s in the bounty of Sullivan County,” she says.
The tent can sleep two comfortably, but larger parties can take advantage of Anie’s Le Petite Cabine up the road, a 1955 timber frame loft with the same cottage style charm (including the cozy French ticking linens) as the tent.
At the ample campsite, guests can scrub their clothes on the vintage washboard and leave them to dry in the sun. “I wanted to position the camp so you could really experience the river,” says Anie.
In addition to the canvas tent, air mattress, and deck, Tentrr also provides property owners with a combination table-bench-storage unit. The storage cabinet is stocked with practical supplies, like matches, toilet paper, and kindling, but it’s also filled with the makings of a stylish picnic, including handmade stoneware from L.A. potter Mirena Kim, vintage flatware, linen napkins and tea lights in Mason jars.
Juliette and her business partner, Laura Silverman of Glutton for Life, are gearing up to open Fish & Bicycle, a bar, cafe and grocery in Narrowsburg that will serve craft cocktails and a locally minded menu. Though the opening date is set for late summer, Laura can arrange a picnic lunch for guests at any time, should they decide to take a break from cooking on the Coleman stove or over the campfire.
Le Petite Camp is just a short bike ride away from the Delaware River, where guests can rent kayaks, canoes, go water rafting or cool off in a swimming hole. Anie can arrange a chartered fishing tour or a hike along Tusten Mountain Trail. River Brook Farm on Route 97 opens its organic market and petting zoo to the public on Saturdays. For those craving civilization, downtown Narrowsburg is less than a ten-minute drive away. Nest offers everything from vintage outerwear to a great edit of kitchen accessories, while Maison Bergogne and A Picker’s Find carry an impressive inventory to satisfy antique lovers. Grab dinner at The Heron for a delectable farm-to-table meal.
The rock slabs along the bank of the river provide the perfect setting for a simple and delicious picnic. “We invite people to embrace where they are,” says Juliette, “and to be immersed in the environment that needs our attention and care.”
The Ten Mile River meanders through to a wetland at the end of the road, making it a highway of sorts for wildlife. From the deck, guests can observe eagles, blue herons, and geese traveling up and down the river.
Anie opened the grounds on April 1st to coincide with the opening day of spring trout fishing. Le Petite Camp is available to rent through December 1st and is currently the only Tentrr campsite on a river.