Wheeler Gorge Campground is a great place for families to explore the Los Padres National Forest all year long. Informative tours of the area are led by forest rangers at the nearby visitor center. The campground provides scenic views of a nearby stream, as well as vast mountain vistas.
The Wheeler Gorge Nature Trail begins at the upper end of the campground. It is a relatively short loop that leads through thick vegetation along the creek banks and to a hillside view of the area. Wildflowers often bloom along the path.
The creek flows near some of the campsites and a small swimming hole is frequented near the side of the highway. Fishing is rough in the area and may produce a catch of trout, but the stream is not stocked. Kayaking or canoeing in the creek is not recommended.
Educational programs, including ranger-led hikes, are offered year-round.
The campground is open year-round and offers dozens of single-family sites for tent or RV camping. Some sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Parking spurs are paved and vary in length, accommodating RVs up to 35 feet.
Each site is equipped with a table and campfire ring with grill. Accessible vault toilets are provided, but drinking water is not available. Visitors must bring their own water, and remove their trash from the campground.
The campground is adjacent to Matilija Creek, and is bordered by a mixed forest of oak and sycamore trees and evergreen shrubbery. Most sites are shaded and summer temperatures reach up to 95 degrees.
The campground was originally built by Boy Scouts nearly a century ago, as well as a historical stone home that is also on-site.
Ventura and the Pacific Ocean are about 20 miles south of the campground.
ADA Access: N
This campground is gorgeous. It is nestled by a creek in an oak grove and the sites offer a decent amount of privacy. Most spots are shady. There are a decent amount of bugs so make you bring some spray or whatever your preferred pest keeper away thing is. This site has no water so be sure to bring in all you can.
We stayed in Campsite #70 and all the previous reviews said it was going to be terrible…in truth, this was one of the best campsites I had been to in a long time. An awesome creek runs through the middle of the campsite. The reason people didn't seem to like our site was because of it's proximity to the highway. Didn't bother me too much…motorcycles zoom by maybe once an hour during the day. Nothing too crazy. The bathrooms are well kept and YOU CAN BUY FIREWOOD from the camp hosts!! Campsites come with fire rings, a grill, and a picnic table. Enjoy your time in the woods!!