the dyrt
THE BEST CAMPING NEAR
Desert Lake, CALIFORNIA
98 Reviews 83 Campgrounds
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Private RV Park

This is for Silverlakes property owners only. Strong security. Non-members not allowed.

Great OHV camping with full hookups!!

Free admission to Ghost Town with camping reservation. Good fall to spring. Way to hot in summer. No shade. Dusty but that’s expected in an OHV Campground. We just held an outing there with 24 people. Great time!! https://hitched4fun.com/2018/09/15/2018-calico-ghost-town-ca-outing/

Great place to get away!

All basic amenities, no cell service so perfect getaway. Lots of hiking near by. First come first serve no reservations.

What a beautiful campground

There’s lots to do here and it’s just beautiful. There’s many sewer/50amp spots in several loops with pull through and backup spots. Two lodges and two pools, the family pool is huge with a cool splash pad. The cell service isn’t the greatest but it’s worth being out in the middle of nothing. The campground is very well kept, clean bathhouses and great employees. There’s a small stream running through green space near miniature golf and a river too. We really appreciated that there was lots of shady trees everywhere, a little store that was open 5 days a week in case we needed something we’d forgotten and plenty of weekend activities for kids.

Just what you need to get away

Our campsite was in the trees which made it the perfect getaway from the city. Basic amenities. Dogs allowed. Easy to access.

Fun. Unique. Accommodating

We arrived on a Friday night, without reservations. Our first night of van living. Found the security guard who connected us with the ranger. There were plenty of sites to chose from. The ranger then found us a better site for $5 less, The place was quiet, Beautiful sunset. We aren't off-roaders but noticed a lot of ATVs around. Seems like the place to be. There are also mountain bike trails around. In the morning we discovered the Calico Ghost Town attraction right next to the park. In fact entrance to the ghost town is included in the camping fees. The town is an abandoned silver mining town. There's a few historical buildings and mines you can hike around. You can pay for a tour of the mine. Lots of old west quaint shops, and restaurants. We watched a skit of a shoot out preformed in the main square. Spent more time there than planned, it was that fun.

Beautiful Desert Experience

Camping at Joshua Tree exceeded all expectations. We did not have a permit before arriving, however a group was leaving their campsite for the weekend and offered us their permit for the remaining days. We shared the campsite with two other campers who were lovely!

Joshua Tree is full of boulders to climb and trails to explore. Expect warm days and cold evenings with some of the brightest stars you'll ever see.

Quiet, cute campground

Easy to miss entrance but so peaceful

Close to the City Campground

This campground is close to major cities in the Los Angeles County area but when you get there you seem along way from any thing which is nice. It is a large campground with water, eletric and sewer hookups available. During the season it is pretty crowded but if you go off peak it is very nice and quiet. Stay in the back side of the park as a rail line runs in front of the front side of the park. Phone service and wifi are adequate in most parts of the camp.

it is a good place to stay, if you have no place to go....

it is much like a Walmart parking lot, with hookups…

Great hidden out of the way gem.

Can get a bit windy here but there are some wind breaks set up at some campsites. No reservations taken. A little less than an hour to the Poppy Preserve. Clean bathrooms and great desert views with J Tress everywhere.

Desert camping at its finest

Very flat and open, if you like desert camping this might be the place for you. If you're into dirt bike riding there is a wide field of view. If you are into Rockets this is a great place because in some areas there's no vegetation whatsoever.

Note that it does get windy at night so if you camp outside be prepared to be pelted by small rocks and sand all night.

Reservations available at recreation.gov

Easy drive to the sky

Stayed here two nights in August, it was nice and cool a good break from the heat. There are a lot of sites here for camping unfortunately they are not all open for use. There are several hiking trails here that are well used and well maintained. This is a great campground near the city. Due to lack of rainfall and snow melt the lake is almost dry.

Weekend Getaway

my wife and I came here to camp and hike for the weekend. This is a nice campground with picnic tables, shade covers and fire rings. We camped here in April and it was already getting warm during the day. This campground is very popular with rock climbers', with several places to climb and several hiking trail.

nice trails

This is a nice campground, it has limited water that has to be trucked in to fill the holding tanks. Pit toilets, and playground equipment for those camping with younger kids. There are several nice hikes from the campground. Have seen collage classes and Boy scouts troops using this campground. You can't camp with horses in this campground, but there is horse camping near by.

It's a Fairground

If you need to go to the Antelope Valley Fairground for any reason what-so-ever. Let's say you're coming for a concert or to see a car show or something, sure, come spend the night at the RV lop. It has nice clean bathrooms and showers, very nice hook-ups, and good prices. And while the big black fences are a little, well, big, that definitely bring the feeling of safety.

That said, if you're just passing through the through California/Mojave area and thought it might be fun to go sleep in a fairground for no reason, don't do it. It's another one where it's just a big plain old parking lot. It's a clean nice parking lot, but it's a parking lot.

Solid Campground

Camped one night here before heading up to Mammoth. Popular spot for nearby off-roading.

Great views of rock formations, and large group-friendly campsites. Can hike along the floodplain.

Be sure to bring a warm sleeping bag for fall nights. I used a cheap sleeping bag from target and I have never been so cold in my life.

Just a Parking Lot

Cheap, no-frills full hook-up RV park near the mojave airfield and space port. You are literally parking in a parking lot with hook-ups. It’s bare bones.

Like a different planet

Joshua Tree is a marvel. It is like a different planet that you are exploring. A friend and I decided to drive to Joshua one weekend because we had always wanted to go check it out. The Joshua Trees of Yucca Brevifolia have always amazed me and are what the park is known for. When we arrived we immediately did a long hike in the sun at mid-day. Now this would have been a good idea if we had brought enough water. Hiking in the desert is NO JOKE so please go prepared!

It definitely lived up to our expectations. We did another hike called 49 palms, to this little oasis in the middle of dirt and sand. It was totally incredible to see all of these green desert palm trees emerge after hiking in the desert. Be careful though… there are rattle snakes in rock crevasses!!

Privacy an issue at Thanksgiving

There are no services available, you are boondocking. The views are awesome - great sunrises and sunsets. Most of the year you can be by yourself out here but at Thanksgiving be prepared to share. And remember what you take in you take out.

Beautiful Desert Camping

I loved it here so much. There's lots of good scrambling, bouldering, or just wandering around to do. It's beautiful, a bit alien, and super spiritual.

remote hike in campground with views

great views 360 degrees once you're on top. a 7 mile hike north on the Pacific Crest Trail from mill creek fire station. fire rings with multiple spots

pretty and busy!

walk in. no reservations. we ended up sharing a site with some awesome folks. great hikes straight out of the campsite. bathrooms and water available.

Great spaces, easy trails, & close to the IE!

We came on a Saturday afternoon, and even though 4 of the sections of camping were closed off - we found an AMAZING space in section D. It wasn’t right next to the bathrooms, but the site was spaced out enough that we had plenty of privacy. It was right next to the trail head, too!

The lake isn’t back actually near the site, and they don’t allow for swimming. However, there is a recreational area 20 minutes down the mountain on the lake.

It was $17 per night, and was an easy & beautiful drive up the mountain.

Fire pit had a grill on it, too!

No shade or privacy, gravel sites

I was here one October where the weather was above 100F during the day. The sites have absolutely no shade or cover, and are just lined up in a row next to each other with no privacy. We ended up choosing to spend more of our time at Owl Canyon (BLM campground nearby) because it was much more secluded, had better views, and offered shade. The advantages to Calico are: bathrooms with showers, water, and dump stations. However we were ok with a primitive site and did not want to feel crowded in.

beautiful views and very open

I stayed with a group here for 3 nights a few years ago in October. This is a beautiful campground. Very primitive, with pit toilets and one water faucet. Trash is carry in carry out. It is a small campground (Less than 25 sites). It was also extremely hot (I think above 110F during the day), but at night it was beautiful. We didn't even need a tent because of the mild temperatures and calm breeze. Our group site had plenty of room for everyone, and picnic tables that had a covering to provide some shade during the day. The area felt very remote and quiet, and we were able to hike right from our site each day.

stayed during the fair

nice showers, well kept bathrooms, good parking. food shopping is close by. nice power hookups. 50 volt.

One Of The Best

Great car camping location with lots to do. Plenty of camp sites but they fill up fast, especially during the summer on weekends. Very comfortable with all the amenities and enough space in between sites for low noise. Very beautiful with tall cedar, pine, fir and spruce with a nice creek in the wet season. Trails going all over the place, some easy some steep and wild life every where you look. Simple tent sites to bigger trailer pads for every type of camper. Probably the best campground in SoCal. Great for kids.

Oasis in the desert

All the great KOA perks. Camp Store. Full hookups. A refreshing pool.