Unfortunately, we didn't really get to spend any time at the park except at night to sleep. I went to work in the day (remember, it's close to central Austin) and J hooked up with free wireless in various coffee shops around town to look for jobs.
So anyway, here's a new feature on the blog and my first review of a campground, hopefully with many more to come. There are over eighty campsites at McKinney Falls SP, and all of them have water, picnic tables, trees (huge bonus... ours had a massive live oak that covered our table and the spot where we pitched our REI Quarter Dome UL), fire pits/grills, and several have electrical hookups for you RV folks. The cost is quite high, over $20 a night, but the sites are big and are laid out well, most have lantern hooks/poles next to the tables, the bathrooms are immaculate (including the showers, which have free hot water). Reservations can be made at Reserve America (online) and there are a handful of walk-in spots, too (first come, first served); there are also group sites, if that's your thing.
On the two nights we stayed there (Wed. and Thurs. before Labour Day Weekend), we were the only people staying in our loop of campsites. Not even the park host was on duty those nights, so we simply picked out a spot right next to the bathrooms, pitched our tent, and had a nice meal before it started to rain a bit.
The park sits next to Onion Creek, and there's loads of hiking and biking trials there, as well as good fishing in the creek, so we've heard. There's an interpretive center, which is okay (the rangers were a bit surly when we were there) and a big campground fire pit/amphitheater thing.
The only thing that dampened our experience there is that on the first of the two nights we camped, it was about 90-degrees F at night and raining, which meant inside our puny backpacking tent, it was about 120-degrees F, damp, and smelly! I can't really fault the park for that -- it's really a problem with the Quarter Dome's design that it gets such poor ventilation when the rain-fly is fully battened down. On the second night, it was still warm at night, but we took the fly off and were able to sleep and cooled down as the night wore on, eventually getting down into the mid-70's, which was great.
If you're coming to Austin, and it's not summer, I highly recommend going out there. I know that J & I will be checking out the park again this fall when it cools down so we can check out the hiking trails, try out new gear, and get out of the city quickly. Which is one of the reasons I will choose to give the park a 7 out of 10: It's close enough to Austin to be used as a base of operations for exploring the city as a visitor (and MUCH cheaper than a hotel!) as well as a good place for an overnight or weekend escape (provided it's not a million degrees outside) for Austinites and it makes an easy day-retreat. The facilities are top-notch, but the reason it doesn't score higher than a 7 is because the rangers were surly and I plan on reserving 8's, 9's, and 10's for those campsites that are really spectacular AND serve as gateways to phenomenal outdoors activities (stuff that's way out of the way, has amazing views, etc.).