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Mt. Hood National Forest, OREGON
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First to Review
Serene Lake OR Backpacking Campground

Beautiful little mountain lake on the slopes of Mt. Hood. We did the 12-mile loop in two days from the trailhead below Shellrock Lake. There are some tough climbs but the Friday night we spent there was great. Looked like it was getting crowded when we left Saturday afternoon. The water is clear and amazingly warm, considering that it's glacier feed.

We didn't have to pay for the campsite, but you do need a Forest Pass or something to leave your car at the trailhead.

Trout Creek BLM Rustic Deschutes Boat Launch

This is a very pretty but rustic campground on BLM land. No reservations are taken, and people seem to stay for a long time. We got there early on a Friday in mid-May and found it full. However, we got talking with an RV owner who said it was fine to park our Westfalia in the far end of his site. That might not always work, obviously, if it's more crowded. Another reviewer said it's not crowded in July, but I don't know.

This campground seems to attract a lot of fishermen, since there's a boat ramp used to take out and put it on the Deschutes. I'm sure it's jammed on opening day and during hatches.

We didn't bring bikes but you can walk for miles along the river and feeder streams. The basalt columns and rimrock outcroppings are beautiful. There's some good climbing, but sections of the hillsides are closed off during nesting season. It's pretty well marked.

There are vault toilets but no running water. Also, there's a one-lane tunnel on the access road, so that would limit wide and/or high RVs and trailers. There are fire rings, but fires are usually prohibited throughout this area during summer fire season.

Trout Creek Deschutes River Boat Ramp Dry Camp

This is a very pretty but rustic campground on BLM land. No reservations are taken, and people seem to stay for a long time. We got there early on a Friday in mid-May and found it full. However, we got talking with an RV owner who said it was fine to park our Westfalia in the far end of his site. That might not always work, obviously, if it's more crowded. Another reviewer said it's not crowded in July, but I don't know.

This campground seems to attract a lot of fishermen, since there's a boat ramp used to take out and put it on the Deschutes. I'm sure it's jammed on opening day and during hatches.

We didn't bring bikes but you can walk for miles along the river and feeder streams. The basalt columns and rimrock outcroppings are beautiful. There's some good climbing, but sections of the hillsides are closed off during nesting season. It's pretty well marked.

There are vault toilets but no running water. Also, there's a one-lane tunnel on the access road, so that would limit wide and/or high RVs and trailers. There are fire rings, but fires are usually prohibited throughout this area during summer fire season.

Quick getaway

live in Molalla and this a quick 3 miles down the road. The park is a small county park that has a day use area with group day use site rentals. The day use area is on the banks of the Molalla river. There is a playground for the kids and swimming in the river. The campground is 1 row of (I THINK) about 8 spots nestled along a creek away from the day use area. Lots of trees and grass. Just around the corner down the road is the Shady Dell railroad park that has summer fun for kids and adults to ride trains for a donation. Going the other way you go into the Molalla river corridor that offers fishing and hiking.

Love this campground!

Have stayed4-5 times in the past 2 years… All sites are wooded and private feeling and have room for a tent guest as well .. lots of hiking trails… swimming holes rafting grass areas … definitely one of our favorites!

Peaceful place, great sites

Have been to this place a couple of times and love it! There is a campground you can reserve sites at which are large and we'll spaced. You can also stay for free on the BLM land surrounding the lake. (If you do this please leave no trace!)

Hiking around the Clear Lake takes longer than in looks because of all the fingers so allow a couple of leisurely hours.

Its a hauntingly beautiful, chill place. A must visit for fans of mountain lakes!

Nice riverside campground

Nice clean campground. Make sure to say hi to the hosts Floyd and Opal in their big RV. Very friendly. This was Summer 2017.

Sites are pretty close together but very clean, with nice access to the river.

Be sure to head up to Opal Creek for a great hike.

Nice spot

Great little area

Great Location, Spots and Price

Great campground in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. Smallish campground with about half the spots right on the river. Nice day use area slightly separated from the camping. Picnic tables and fire rings. Mostly tents when we were there, but there's also pull-through driveway type spots that could fit a trailer. At just $12 per night, price can't be beat.

Plenty of trees and grass. Most spots are slightly exposed to the turn-around road, but still feels private since there's space and trees between the spots.

Not too far from Mouton Falls, which are amazing, plus other hiking and swimming areas nearby.

Petroglyphs Galore!!!

When we are in the area we normally stay near Maryhill State Park. This campground was a delightful change to our routine. The site is small but it offers quite a few different ways to camp: tents, RV, cabins even a teepee!! This site is on Horsethief Lake and offers some great summer fun.

One of the best aspects was the petroglyphs that were along trails near the campground. This was a great spot and I highly recommend it!

Stayed a week! So pretty!

This was so peaceful. We tent camped for a week in the summer. Took nice long hike around the lake twice with the kids. The spots are huge, the toilets smell so bad though. Make sure to bring sanitizer definitely. The views in the morning make it worth it though.

Favorite Campsite in the Area

Affordable forested campsites with many that are steps from the Clackamas River. River is gorgeous and you can hear the sounds of the creek from many of the campsites. While some spots in the middle lack privacy, the river side spots are great with lots of space and separated by large trees. Toilets, picnic tables and fire rings on site. Great in the summer if you wan to wade in the river. We were there on a Sunday night in August and almost had the whole place to ourselves. Fun hiking nearby. One of our favorite campsites in the Mt. Hood natural area. The river access is really cool and it's also a short drive to other swimming holes and hiking.

Blackberries!

This is where I first picked blackberries 😜. Being from the desert it was definitely awesome to pick them fresh. I loved this state park because of the view and the blackberries of course. We had a great spot with a good amount of space and privacy. The location can’t be beat for watching the kite surfing nearby and we took a tour of session beer that was awesome!

Favorite spot for hiking!

Nottingham is so so beautiful especially for the hiking. You e got Mt. Hood nearby and a river. The tent camping is pretty secluded. We had a spot next to the river and it was so peaceful. The rangers directed us to our campsite and gave us hiking recommendations, which was so helpful.

The toilets were clean, and well stocked. It is easy to find but still far enough away not to hear traffic. This place is pretty perfect. Definitely go on this recommended hikes because the falls were spectacular.

One of my faves!

This campground, Nottingham, is definitely high on my list of favorite campgrounds. It has everything you could want in a campground. Hiking nearby, beautiful Mt. Hood, and a river you can hear rushing at night while you sleep. I also really love how private and secluded each campsite is. Nothing bugs me more than being in our campsite and we can see what everyone else around us is doing and saying. We had a spot next to the river, and it was so peaceful at night listening to the river. The campground rangers are super friendly, and very helpful. They directed us to our campsite, and gave us hiking recommendations to do in the morning. The vaulted toilets were clean, and stocked with toilet paper when we stayed. The campground is easy to find, right off highway 35. It is far enough away from the highway, though, so you cant hear the cars and trucks rushing by. The hiking was really great. I would recommend Tamanawas Falls which was nearby. We did a few others hikes that were really great as well. The wildflowers were out in full bloom (see pictures attached-I took so many flower pictures!!) There are no water spigots in the campground so definitely make sure to bring enough water, or a water filtration system…especially if you plan to do a lot of hiking.  Overall, we enjoyed our stay and would definitely come back.

Perfect tent camping

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!

Many Ways Welcoming

A campground whose design they took some time with. Fantastic privacy between sites, a happy river crossed over in several places by large logs, low car noise due to it stretching away from the highway and rewarding nearby hikes (hello, Alder Flat) makes this a favorite in a string of nearby campgrounds. Some bigger scenic views and campsites further off the campground road would be nice, though site 14 is a short walk-in gem that sits up a bit, platform style.

Hush Now

Dispersal camping all year. You are immediately ensconced in quiet and shade, an impossibly green and detailed large pond right off the bat, with a huge walkable log going right to the middle, and lots of interesting critters and a popurrí of different foliage up and down the trail. Ends at the popular Clackamas River after a too-short 1.4 miles. Lots of little side routes to find your perfect spot.

The places is lovely, off-season

There is plenty of running water all around. I imagine some, if not all of the clear, cold, running water is potable, but i don't remember ever trying. There's a decent number of camp sites, and as i recall, you're allowed to reserve in advance. They each have a picnic table and fire pit. I recall this being a paid campground, but i don't recall the price -- I assume between 7 & $15. Multiple tents can be set up at one campsite.

It's a good walk to Bagby Hot Springs, through the forest, and over a beautiful wooden bridge overlooking gushing water. And if you wake up before anybody else, it's a lovely place to simply wander around aimlessly. The ferns, evergreens, and waters are nice to gawk at. Even the slugs are worth watching sometimes.

Beautiful campground

Easy to access, even for larger rigs. We stayed in 39 foot 5th wheel. Plenty of pull thru spots, full hookups, regularly spaced bathroom/showers. Nice store for basic needs, nice laundry room.

Should be called “Roadside” instead of Riverside

Don’t be alarmed, this campground sits along HWY 22 AND along the Santiam River in the Willamette National Forest. Despite the road noise, if you can grab a campsite along the water you will feel at peace with the whispering waters and tucked away in the old growth forest that surrounds you. This site has a feature that many others do not, which is a little roundabout at the end of the site. The pathways are paved which makes this site great for families with kids who may want to ride their bikes or scooters while not in the water fishing/playing/swimming. Potable water is available as well as vault toilets. (Bring soap!) There are no showers at this location. Dogs are welcome as long as they are on a leash.

This site is both walk-up and reservable through Linn County Parks & Rec. See more info here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/willamette/recarea/?recid=4224

Perfect Oregon State Park Campground

Just 45 minutes outside of Portland, and near the town of Estacada, is Milo McIver State Park, which I consider to be a quintessential Oregon State Park: lots of huge evergreen trees, large campsites, plenty of hiking areas and places to explore including a river.

There are two main loops in the main campground. The larger has 44 or so RV campsites, which can also be used for tents, plus a bathroom with flush toilets and hot showers. Nearby is a smaller loop of 9 or so tent-only sites that seem a bit more private.

We went during a vintage trailer rally, which was a ton of fun, since you could walk around and see everyone's trailers. There's also a Frisbee golf course and some fields to explore as well.

Overall, a nice, fun campground near Portland with larger sites and just enough to keep you busy.

Close to road, but lake side is quiet

This is a narrow campground with limited sites. Some have full parking pads for two vehicles, but mostly parking is dirt next to the drive lane. Spacious sites for the size of the campground.

Sites on the side near the road are very noisy, so make sure to check the map before you reserve.

Dog friendly, tent sites, bathroom, river access, no showers.

Camp above the Santiam riverbank

Camp above the Santiam riverbank and enjoy a night of peace and rest listening to the water flow. This site has access to vault toilets, potable water. The sites are large enough for rv or tent sites with vehicle pull through. The sites have enough old forest growth to provide privacy for the family. If you camp near the river you cannot hear the road, even though you are only a skip away. I do not recommend camping in the sites near the road if you have kids/pets with you or if you are a light sleeper. The roads are paved which can be great for family cars or for little ones wanting to ride their bike or scooter around camp. The site that we stopped at would have been great for fishing trout or salmon. Don’t forget your fishing license!

You can reserve this site through Linn County Parks & Rec: 1-877-444-6777 - And like most sites in the Willamette National Forest dogs are allowed as long as they are on leashes and check out time is 1pm.

Quiet and spacious

Tis a narrow campsite between blowout road and Detroit lake. There are several large pads for vehicles, but mainly tent sites, some of which you park near the road and make a short walk in. Not being able to camp near your car may not be a bonus for you, but this helps with the road noise and the sound of your neighbors pulling up in the middle of the night.

Dog friendly, bathrooms, portable water pump. Mainly reserve sites.

Gorgeous!! Bring hiking shoes & a headlamp.

The only thing missing from this amazing camping spot is electricity and running water. Otherwise, it’s perfect! Absolutely gorgeous view of Mt. Hood, tons of hiking, a beautiful lake and camping spots for everyone. They have walk-in spots, yurts, a-frames, RV spots, a horse camp and even a few rooms at the lodge. Make sure to spend at least 3-4 days!

Meh-La-La State Park, not much to it

Molalla River State Park is located near Canby, Oregon about 2 miles from the Canby Grove Camp that I stayed at for the EEAO conference in Sept18. This park sets on the Molalla River and was once a spot for the Molalla Tribes. This site has bathrooms and reservable picnic areas with a view of the river and boat ramp. Yes, there is a boat ramp but you must be careful because there are ferry lines near the location and the water line runs low mid-summer. There is a nice pet exercise area and trails, but I do not think this lives up to its title as a state park when compared to Silver Falls, Willamette Mission, or Champoeg State Parks within 1-2hrs drive. This appears to be more of a neighborhood park tucked away near residential areas. I advise to travel 20 mins away to Champoeg State Park that has camping and cabins open year round. There was no obvious designated camping at this site.

Tucked away peaceful spot

This camp ground has has spacious sites and room enough at most for an RV pad with a couple of tents. Portable water stations, fire rings, benches/tables and restrooms. Great shower facilities and a beautifully taken care of campground! Dogs welcome.

These sites are reservable, but many are first come first serve.

Hidden Gem in Gifford Pinchot

This is my go-to campground when visiting the Gorge area. Located in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, just north of the town of Carson. Its about a 20 minute drive to the Columbia river, and 10 minutes to the small town of Carson. Its tucked away down a beautiful Forest road. You are nestled amongst towering old growth trees, wild ferns and thimbleberries, with Panther Creek running alongside the camp. The 2018 season had excellent campground hosts, I hope they return next year! They were very friendly and had helpful tips for trails in the area.

The pit toilets were clean, though heavy smell of ammonia which is not unusual at campgrounds like this. Each site has a fire pit and picnic table. There are potable water pumps, as well as garbage and recycling. Frequented mainly by families, and some PCT hikers, as it is located just of the PCT trail. They have first come first serve as well as reservable sites. It fills up quickly on the weekends, so if you dont have a site reserved I highly recommend getting there early. Each regular site is $18 a night. Enjoy!