THE BEST CAMPING NEAR
Sequoia National Forest, CALIFORNIA
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This place is amazing!

We absolutely love Alabama Hills. BLM land so you can camp anywhere. So many beautiful views. You can see Mount Whitney in the distance. 4 wheel drive isn’t required but definitely recommend. No bathrooms or water around. A lot of old movies were filmed in the hills. We went off roading to a nearby mine, you can drive all the way in the mine which was rad.

Adult Playground

Drive around, hike, climb! This place is amazing, there is something for everyone. You can find a secluded space or find space for a big group. The rock formations are amazing! It is just outside of lone pine, but there are no services in the rec area itself, bring everything you need for a good time!

Awesome

One of my favorite campsites off of 395. Easy to hike to the “falls” from the campground. I car camped but saw plenty of trailers there.

Awesome

This is the go to free camping area that my friends and I go to when we don’t want a campground. Its dispersed camping in the Alabama hills. No toilets or amenities so thats a little bummer. Its might be worth it to pay $8 a night at a campground if you want easy access to toilets. Tuttle creek is up the road and is a good option.

Super Chill and Cheap

I was motorcycle camping and this campground is awesome in the spring. Its not too high in elevation so you wont freeze overnight. Its only $8 a night but you need cash or check like any normal forestry campground. Beautiful view of the sierras and Mt Whitney. About 15-20 drive to the Mt Whitney trail head from here. If you’re planning on summiting Whitney, I wouldn’t recommend this campground because the elevation is low, I would camp at cottonwood lakes just south in the sierras to acclimate to elevation. There are normal forestry pit toilets, fire rings. No reservations, first come first serve.

Awesome spot!

Stayed at Rivernook for 5 nights in site 430. Had hookups. The site was riverfront and the water was flowing. Watched rafters and kayakers go by. Dog friendly. My lab went swimming everyday. There is also a creek that runs through the campground. Lots of nearby hiking. Lake Isabella is close as well. The town of Kernville is 2 minutes away with anything you might need. It was my first trip to the area but I plan to return!

Dirt cheap price on priceless view

For only $8 you get picnic table, fire pit, vault toilet, and access to water and waste dumping. And view of Eastern Sierra that has been seen in movies such as Iron Man. I almost want to keep this a secret…

Backpacker’s dream

Maybe this is just a Southern Californian desert rat talking, but there is something very satisfying about hiking in and having a water source at your first night’s location. We had a lovely stay here last August. It was a bit crowded for a hike-in only site but still very enjoyable. The lake is devastatingly beautiful and makes a great backdrop, and the boulders scattered throughout create natural privacy barriers.

Great river side camping.

My last visit to Lodgepole was in 2017 and I noticed the campsites were much closer together than the previous visit. Apparently a large snowmelt changed the course of the river and many sites were washed away causing the park to squeeze them in other areas. That’s was unfortunate but still a wonderful site. So nice to be able to jump in the river after a long day of camping! Also there is nothing better than falling asleep to the sound of a river. Great store onsite and lots of hikes right from the campground. Most campers are very respectful of quit hours but as we all have had to deal with there is always one loud site but they shut up when asked to keep it down. It’s inportant to ressurch the sites to get one that will fit your needs! Some are very small and only fit a little tent. But I really like this campground and recommend it. Will be returning in July and will update then. Happy Camping! 🐻⛺️

Very family friendly and unique!

Kern River is a great place in the hot California Desert. This place has everything to make you feel at home. Several large sites for tents or RV's , bathrooms with full showers, a pool, splashpad and water play area. They have these weird Banana bikes which were fun. I was in complete heaven when I saw the coffee bar! There is a big pavilion with cooking areas for everyone!

This is close to several nearby attractions. They offer great wifi services. Great places if you have little ones. so much to do and all of the staff was wonderful.

They have Cabins too! I didnt stay in them but they are pretty cute.

Beautiful

Great stop for rafting. There are bathrooms, fire rings, picnic tables, and a sense of peacefulness. We were only there for a night and slept in the car.

On the River!

We love these campground. We go every year during the summer! Nice clean small campground. Book way in advance though. You can get a site right on the river with no sewage hook ups or get all hook ups off the river. You can even rent a cabin. Really close to town. Take a ride down the river in your tube and walk back. So much fun!

Love this campground, clean and spacious.

We spent a few days at the Kern River Campground and really enjoyed the spacious campsites, the river and Ming Lake. Great bike trails, and walking trails, this is great for a nice slow and easy day. I am adding a video to better show you the site, now we did go camping in early April and we had a very good winter. Dry camping only, No Hookups, there is water and a dump station on site.

Teri

Beautiful but no level flat campsites.

This is a pretty campground. Lots of pines but no real vistas. Also no real level flat ground for tent camping. Sites are smallish & close together. Running water and flush toilets. 1 medium bear box per site. No showers.

Busy but Beautiful

We stopped here on the way into Sequoia National Forest knowing the Kern River sites would be full. There were lots of families playing by the water here and it was nice to have our dog out and swimming for a little bit.

There is only one pit toilet bathroom so that was rough waiting for the line to go down. Kernville isn't far away so you can go to town easily to get supplies and food.

Hidden gem

One my favorite places to camp among the redwoods. There is a daily fee. Generally pretty quiet, smaller trailers ok. We’ve driven up 28 ft travel trailers. Road up is fair but that is what keeps it from being overwhelmed by visitors. Gets crowded on holidays. Ponds are stocked with trout during the summer. Lots of trails.

Backpacking trip in sequoia

6ish mostly uphil trek to the twin lakes campsite. Campsite sites are very nice with bear boxes and a locker toilet. Whole area is at about 9,000 ft elevation so it gets cold and the views are unreal

Sequoia backpacking trip

Nice 6.5ish hike out to a beautiful subalpine lake. Campsite are scattered around the edge of pear lake with granite mountains surrounding the area. Trout in the lake also

Backpacking

Easy 3-4 mile hike to beautiful weaver lake. Camp sites are spread out through out the side of the lake. Even spots with no amenities but an awesome lake.

Always a nice stop

One of the best BLM spots around . There are no amenities so you have to be 100% self contained. Bring your own everything. Always will stop here when visiting the 395. Hope it stays pristine

Where the desert meets the mountains

This is a great dispersed camping area at the base of the E. Sierras. Camping can be along any one of several dirt roads, explore a bit til you find just the right spot (existing sites are easy to pick out)! The town of Lone Pine is nearby but make sure you bring plenty of food and water. Pack in/Pack out. With Mt. Whitney as your back drop you really can't go wrong here.

trees trees trees

This is a really cool little campground near the entrance of Sequoia National Park. The sites are tent only, so no hookups or anything like that. Pretty nice sites though, a lot of space. I think there can be fire restrictions in the summer since it can get so dry, so just be aware of that. As far as places go, it wasn't too pricey. I think we paid about $20 a night. There are bathrooms with running water, and the sites have picnic tables and fire rings. Each site also has storage lockers for your food, so be sure to lock it up in order to keep the bears from getting into it.

As for stuff to do around here, you obviously have to check out the trees. Go look at General Sherman and all the other Sequoia trees. They're so amazing and honestly it humbles you a little. Also check out Moro Rock Trail. The view from the top is amazing. You'll also probably see a fair amount of wildlife while you're hiking around, so be careful of the bears. Out of all my trips to California, I've seen the most bears here in Sequoia. They are super cool creatures, just keep a respectful distance and of course don't feed them.

Breathtaking landscape

This is the closest campground to the peak of Mt Whitney

permits for camping are extremely limited and are based on a beginning of the year lottery system for peak season. Permits are available spring and fall as well but weather conditions may make reaching the camp/peak impossible.

this camp is located above the tree line with views of rugged peaks, glaciers and lakes.

All waste must be packed out in special bags given to you when you pick up your permit.

Kernville River Camp

Easily accessed campground located right on the Kern River in the lower Sequoia Forest. No service, running water, or electricity, but there is vault toilets and dogs are allowed. Pretty hefty on the fee almost $30 a night, But trust me this place is worth it. Lots of trees to make shady spots. The lower camp spots are located at the bottom of the hill (easier access to the river, safer for children). The higher spots are up the hill with a magnificent few of the raging Kern River. There is a few private "beach" spots you can enjoy the river without the intimidating rapids (videos below). It is about 30 minutes from any store or cell service, so make sure you come prepared. Probably one of the best campgrounds in Kernville! Check out a deal for white water rafting before you plan your trip. One of the most fun I've ever had in my life!

Love this Place

Visit for the day or stay overnight this is a gorgeous place to visit. At the base if the mountain you’re camping amongst tall pines and a running river falling from above. Visit the store for a souvenir or a breakfast for the hike. Campground is set on a winding amongst the trees with developed sites. Bathroom areas etc Gets busy and is a first come first serve so have a backup plan in the summer.

Great if you are hiking Whitney as a base camp!

this is a great campground to use as a base camp before you summit Whitney. The staff is friendly and helpful and the portal is just a few minutes away with the store and small restaurant. Lone Pine is close about a 10 minute drive away.

Great camping near the Kern River

We decided to take last minute trip to Kernville and were able to find a campsite very easy here. Kernville is right along the Kern River which is absolutely beautiful. There are plenty of breweries in the town, hiking nearby and great food. Overall this was a really fun experience!

It was pretty hot when we went, however cooled off nicely in the evening.

Excellent dispersed camping in eastern Sierras

If youre comfortable with primitive dispersed camping, this is the place to go in the eastern Sierras. Like walking on mars, the landscape is amazing with endless boulders and unobstructed views of Mt Whitney. I was there in April, and it was quite windy so be prepared for that. If youre setting up a tent, make sure youre able to stake it down securely. With the ground being dry and rocky make sure to pick a spot accordingly. The area is ideal for RV or car camping.

We got some early morning wind and rain, but were rewarded full crisp rainbow that lasted a good 30 minutes, stretching over the landscape. It was quite the scene.

Loaction wise, youre close enough to the town of Lone Pine if you need groceries, laundry or shower, or feel like having a bite or drink at a local watering hole. It also feels far enough away civilization to have a genuine wilderness experience, and little light pollution from town. I look forward to going back!

Great location

This is a great Corp of Engineer Campground just minutes from Sequoia National Park. Sites are big and well spaced from each other. No hook up but fresh water and a dump station are available at the campground. Two well located bathrooms with good showers at no additional cost. During the summer months the Rangers put on a Campfire program at the campground every Saturday evening. When the lake is full you can walk right up to the waters edge and actually boat in for camping. The staff (Camphosts and Rangers) are friendly, knowledgeable about the local areas and go out of their way to assist campers. Highly recommend this campground especially if visiting Sequoia National Park.

Stinky and cramped campsite

This campsite has small sites that are right on top of each other. We had site #2 and we were right on top of our neighbors, and we could smell the toilets from everywhere in camp. They are pit toilets, and they stink.

Good news is, no bear sightings, especially since there are no bear bins. That's right, bring your own bear proof containers, because they're not provided here. The camp host told us there had been no sightings all year, and that we should be safe to leave our food in the car. We were only there two nights, but we didn't like that.

Overall, it's a cool and quiet campground. But the lack of space, and the stink make it not worth visiting.