Large camping lots with RV pads, short walk to the docks, fishing, hiking and the ocean. Lots to see, beautiful sunsets.
Great little campground for a weekend escape. Not all sites are lakeside, but all have access to the beautiful view. Getting here is a little off the beaten path, so if you feel lost, you’re going the right way. It gets chilly at night, so pack accordingly. We’ll be back with the family and pups and this time with our kayak and SUP!
While the campground itself was nice, with spaced out sites for privacy (larger campground than I expected), in August the water was so low that we went to next door South Twin Lake for boating and swimming. We weren't the only ones-- it was packed!
Smith Rock is a worthwhile destination, even if you only have a day. I'm not a rock climber or very fit hiker (so misery ridge was off the table). There were still great trails to take advantage of along the river, that were less trafficked than the misery ridge trail as well.
Our experience here was a quiet one, and we chose the campground for its proximity to Smith Rock, which I had never been to, and as a dark spot from which to watch the Perseid meteor shower. In those two ways, the campground worked pretty well! Unfortunately, the lake was in the midst of an algae bloom, so not ideal for swimming and we saw no one on the lake. There was also a fire ban in place at the time.
I am floored by the customer service at this lodge. My friends and I visited this winter and will not be returning again after a series of issues with our stay.
After visiting, I received a brief email from Karen Brown saying that we had damaged their new table in the Bluebird cabin. Throughout this entire month, I have requested over six times for a picture, as wanted to see what damage she was referring to. I have called and emailed and talked with other staff to please see the damage, and I never heard back. They charged me the labor and damage without even letting me see what it looked like.
Additionally, we had some lights not working, smoke detectors chirping, and a large container of diesel, which was unmarked, resting right near the wood burning stove. We did not realize this until one of the employees had to come to help us out with the stove, as there were no directions, and let us know how dangerous it was that it was sitting right there. We felt pretty alarmed, as we hadn't moved the container upon our arrival and we did not know it was diesel as the container had nothing written on it.
I have stayed up in the crater for three years now and have used Paulina Lake's cabins for two of them. I'm feeling pretty put out by our latest visit there particularly with this charge and lack of information given to us upon our arrival. I loved visiting here, but I will not be doing so anymore.
We had our second 6th street hood reunion at South Shore and it fitted our needs perfectly. We plan on having the rest of our reunions to come at this same place. Price was even perfect and we got to watch the boat races as a added bonus.
Our families have been coming here for 30 years! Delightful!
Entrance is free. The sites are strung through the trees and overlook the Badlands of Central Oregon's high desert. Cool temps in summer
This is high desert so sites are pretty much just dirt. Some have cool vegetation, grasses and even some sage. Scenery is still awesome and the lake it a lot of fun. If getting out on the water is your thing, can rent boats/kayaks. Sunsets are epic. Has showers and legit bathrooms for those who like civilization. Plenty of hiking nearby.
Walk-in site (the Bivy) is chill. walk-in, pitch tent, done. Yeah you have a lot of neighbors, but people are nice and the price is right ($8 per night for up to two weeks). Has showers and easy access to the climbing. Epic. The ground is pretty nice, not super rocky, but heavy duty tarp would still be a nice way to even things out. Not allowed to sleep in vans etc. tent/bivy only.
We came here in summer and stayed in a cabin. It was clean and very spread out. We were among farms it seemed like and off the road so not much noise. This KOA compared to others didn’t seem to have a ton to do and was pretty dusty. It was fun though to be close enough to Bend to take some great hikes with the family.
We stayed in a yurt here and inside was a sign in book with a lot of fun adventures shared from other travelers. There’s walk path across the street to the river and park which was fun to tube down in the summer heat. This was our second time staying and we will definitely return. It was well kept.
Clean and very scenic view coming in. We tent camped for four days and really enjoyed the quiet here. Not a lot of people which was great in the summer. Nothing bad to say about it. We would definitely return again in the summer but probably RV insurers of tent camp.
Very nice campground. The river at night is so peaceful. We camped in the tent only spot at the end and was surrounded by water. The toliets were clean and there are fire pits. I will definitely be camping here again!
This campsite is the perfect place if you enjoy secluded tent camping in a primitive style but still want the comforts of a fire pit, picnic table and a toilet. The scenery is hard to match. Views of Three Sisters makes for the most breathtaking sunrise and hiking around the lake is beautiful. There is also hiking up to Tenas Lakes or Scott Mountain that makes for a good day trek. It was serene, quiet, picturesque, clean, and free! We paid $5 to park and the walk to our cite was not bad. Get there early to get the best spot; first come first serve.
I often pull my pig of a trailer (25') so comment based on those experiences. I got into this campsite late and just needed a place to park the pig. Oregon State Parks have the best website, brochures and information so you can often drive in totally prepared. USFS has some major catching up to do. I talked with the campsite manager (who was just great) and looked at the campground map that was posted (a first) and still had to stop and walk into numerous sites before I found one that could safely accommodate the pig. I'll be honest, the campground layout was very weird. However, this campground is on the gorgeous McKenzie River so it gets major points for that. Many sites were right on the river and from any site you could hear it. As usual with USFS parks this one was super dark and quiet. Got the dogs out for a hike on a trail I'd spotted and it was awesome. Lots of huge trees and again this is where I feel USFS falls short. I have no idea where the trail went, does it loop, etc. No signage, maps, info available to help. No matter. I love USFS campgrounds!!!!!
Want to mention that Hwy 242 is one of the most amazing discoveries I made this trip. However, this is NOT a road for RV's of any kind. There is NO wiggle room as this extremely narrow "highway" was carved through lava fields and those lava walls are literally inches off the edge of the road. Not to mention the turns are many and super tight. It was white knuckle for 40 miles. Not to mention none of the campgrounds on that highway cater to RV's….fancy that!!!! So take your small cars and tents and enjoy!!!! Or if you have an RV, park on either side of Hwy 242 and drive your small vehicle in on day trips.
My kids are helping us out with reviews for parks. Kids loved Sunriver-Bend Thousand Trails because there is bunnies, bullfrogs, mini-golf, a great little river to float on or swim in, ladderball, bingo, movies outside, and some pretty great pools!
We will definitely be coming back here!
Koosah falls within Linn County and tailors to backpackers/small group visits. Koosah (meaning sky) was once a trading location for local tribes. This water source joins with the Mckenzie River/Trail and is considered one of the three major waterfalls. It has a great day-use site that allows you to walk in and see the Koosah Falls. I recommend hiking the Waterfalls Loop Trail to see Sahalie Falls as well. Unfortunately, we ran out of time but hope to return to see and complete our full adventure. Nearby you can visit Clear Lake, fed by a natural spring that stays a consistent low temperature that does not allow vegetation to grow, creating an astounding experience for fishing and boating. So, after your hike of the falls stop here for some snacks and rent a boat for $25 to relax. I also recommend checking out Blue Pools that connects later down the McKenzie River closer to Sisters. (Blue Pools names because it is also SO clear!)
See link below for more information through FS:
Campground is walk in only. There is a common area for cooking and a designated area for camping. No fires allowed but beautiful views anywhere you look. Smith Rock is ideal for climbers of all levels and while I was visiting I saw many rock climbing guides as well. Bathroom facilities were very clean and they do have showers for campers. Lots of hiking trails and dogs are allowed, which is always a plus and necessity for me. Can't wait to return to this beautiful park.
This campground was great in so many ways. Lots of reservations were available in the days leading up to our trip. The campground we ended up reserving was very large and had great lake views. Not sure if it was the time of year we went or if it is always quiet but one night we had maybe 3 other campers in the campground. My one complaint would be the access to the lake is almost impossible. We brought our paddleboards with us but the water level was too low so the boat ramp was closed and the walk to the water was a lot further than we had anticipated. Despite that one obstacle, I would definitely stay here again. Also looks like it is a good place for fishing since I saw multiple people catching rather large fish all weekend.
This location is hike in only!
The are no amenities whatsoever.
It is located on the McKenzie River trail and can be a stop along your hiking, biking or backpacking travels.
To camp you need to do so responsibly as there are no designated camp sites. If you have a small fire, make sure to do so respectfully anand in a controlled nature as you should always do when backpacking.
This is a splendor to behold!
House Rock is more primative than the nearby campsites, meaning it has more weeds and less number of sites in comparison. To get to this site you have to drive down long switchback grave roads (follow signs - see photo/video) and there was an odd smell once we reached the bottom bank. We were not sure if it was from the trickle of a creek or the neighbors. I would assume that the trickling is more of a steam in early summer/late spring, so plan your trip early in the season. There is one site that has access to shade and the river, but if you do not get that site you will be baking in the sun by late afternoon.
Lost Prarie Campground is great for group or large family camping, but it would be a worst nightmare for couples seeking quiet and relaxation. ALL CAMPSITES are open and have a grid system between each other, making it easy to connect between sites and/or see kids playing with each other. There is a creek that flows nearby with a few trails down the road. No showers, but vault toilets are available. Make sure to bring extra soap and containers to carry water. Potable water is available. Mosquitos can be a problem for some, and with the grass nearby I often wonder about ticks - Deet-free bug repellant like “picaredin” works best, even if just sprayed in shoes and is safer for kids.
These sites at Lost Prarie are reservable through Linn County Parks & Rec.