Lone Pine Campground is located near the base of Mt. Whitney, the highest peak in the continental United States, offering unparalleled views of the mountain and surrounding peaks of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
An abundance of fishing and hiking opportunities can be found both in and around Lone Pine.
Hikers are drawn to the majestic scenery and challenging trails of the Whitney Portal area. Trails lead to the John Muir Wilderness, including Mt. Whitney, and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park. The Mt. Whitney trailhead is just 7 miles away.
The less challenging National Recreation Trail connects Lone Pine Campground to Whitney Portal and its picnic area and fishing pond.
The eastern Sierras are also known for exceptional trout fishing, and anglers can access Lone Pine Creek and a nearby pond.
Lone Pine is especially popular for RV camping. There are also a few tent-only sites and one tent-only group site that can accommodate up to 15 guests. Campsites are arranged around a single loop and have little to no shade or privacy due to the desert landscape.
Firewood is available for purchase on-site, and showers are located 8 miles west of the campground at the Portal Store.
The campground is nestled in sagebrush alongside Lone Pine Creek. At an elevation of 6,000 feet, the location offers clear views of surrounding granite peaks. Desert wildflowers add brilliant colors to the landscape in spring.
The area is home to abundant wildlife, including black bear, mountain lions, mule deer, pine martin, pika and many species of fish and birds. This campground is especially prone to bear activity.
Campers can enter the John Muir Wilderness, a land of lofty snow-capped mountains, deep canyons and vast expanses of glacially carved terrain, via nearby trails. Mt. Whitney is within the wilderness area and entry is available by lottery for experienced hikers.
ADA Access: N
This campground lies about 10 miles to the west of its namesake town, Lone Pine in the Owens Valley to the east of the Sierra Nevada range. It is a very popular campground to use as a base camp for climbing Mt. Whitney especially if the Whitney Portal CG is full. which was the case when we were there. If you can't get a reservation or walk in site at Lone Pine CG, then Tuttle Creek, and the Alabama Hills would be your closest places to camp if you're not planning on climbing Mt. Whitney.
Now on to the actual campground! Now since this is a few miles from the actual trail head to Mt. Whitney it has more RV camping sites than tent sites. Campsite range in price from $25-$65 for single tent sites, RV sites, and 1 group site, respectively. Each campground has a large bear proof box to store all of your food and smelly items in addition to a picnic table and a metal fire ring. The campground had potable water spigots and vault toilets spread throughout. You could also purchase firewood from the camp host, which is recommended due to the possibility of spreading pests.
To list all of the activities you can do in this area would take a book so I'm just gonna touch on some of the things we did! Our main goal for the trip was to try and summit Mt. Whitney by the Mountaineers Route. We got pushed back however due to hard route finding and soft avalanche prone snow. We ended going around 10 miles but the regular hiking trail is 13 miles one way! After getting beaten down by the mountain we were able to eat some great food at the Mt. Whitney Restaurant which had Americana and diner food.
Since we stayed at this campground in the middle of June the temperatures weren't too hot but I would really try to camp higher up at the portal if you plan on coming here in July or August as it could be really hot and there wasn't a ton of shade. Also be doubly sure to book your campground ahead of time as I doubt there will be any sites if you show up after 3 or 4 without a reservation.
Being a Ranger for the Dyrt allows us to test and review gear from time to time! This time we were testing out the Adjustable Neck Gaiter from Eclipse sun protection. This was honestly one of my favorite pieces of gear I've been able to test for the Dyrt!
- Simple design that replaces $100's of sunscreen in it's lifetime! (never washes out)
- Is multi functional and can be used as a gaiter, headband, buff, and so much more!
- Super lightweight and doesn't need to be reapplied or leave you greasy
- It is super cheap and includes a Velcro strap to adjust to smaller neck
- The only flaw I could find was the sewing along the neck was a little weak and I ripped it slightly before realizing I needed to be a little more delicate pulling it on
Other than that one con I would say this is an amazing product that helps keep you from spending 100's on a temporary sunblock and helps keep all those nasty chemicals out of nature, the waterways, and the oceans! I definitely think we'll be trying out the sleeves for fishing as my fiances arms can get pretty burnt sometimes.
Hit this up in March for a quick overnight after hiking in Big Pine and Whitney. Nice camp ground, quiet that time of year. Friendly people. Bathrooms are vault toilets.
Permit needed for overnight camping at lone pine lake. Get this at ranger station, to the right , just as you enter lone pine. Pick up bear canister here as well
Drive up Whitney Portal road till it ends. Park. Display copy of permit in vehicle.
Hike approx 2.5 Miles up Mt Whitney trail. Follow sign to lone pine lake detour to left of the trail. Camp anywhere following LNT policies.
I went midweek in early September and there was only one other group camping.
Beautiful alpine lake
I took a chance and drove to the Lone Pine Campground just below Mt. Whitney on Memorial Day weekend of 2017. After circling the campground twice I asked the campground manager if there was an availability. After double checking his paperwork I managed to snag a site 43 which was at the far end at the top of the grounds.
This site is meant for group camping and it really is quite large with a picnic table made for 20 people to sit at. There is a fire ring to accommodate a very large fire. It may have been 4 feet across, I didn't have a tape measure.
The drawback of this site is that you will have to walk everything at least 100 feet uphill. Not ideal for a lot of comfort gear. On the plus side, the bathroom isn't far away and they are clean.