Umpqua is noteworthy as home to the tallest sand dunes in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. Off-road vehicle riding is a huge sport here and visitors are rewarded with incredible views of the Pacific Ocean from the tops of the dunes.
The featured attraction is off-road vehicle riding. Rather than trails, the area offers clear and open spaces for adventure-seeking riders. The Reedsport/Winchester Bay Chamber of Commerce puts on the summertime Dunefest to bring together families of all ages for motocross racing, treasure hunting in the sand, freestyle riding shows and more.
Note that all sites can only be accessed by 4X4 vehicles. No water is available so campers should bring an ample amount. Campsites are primitive and it's recommended that all campers bring portable toilets and fire pans. Seasonal rainfall may affect campsites. Contact Oregon Dunes NRA for seasonal information. Standard sites fit five vehicles and up to 20 people. The two group campsites fit 10 vehicles and 40 people. Campsites are available year-round and reservations may fill up quickly in peak summer season.
Campsites are dispersed along the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area on the Pacific Coast. Winchester Bay is a short drive north and Eel Lake is a short drive south. The camping area is part of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, known for its wind-sculpted sand dunes towering up to 500 feet above sea level.
Visit Umpqua Lighthouse State Park, along Lake Marie. The Umpqua River Lighthouse stands on the site of the first lighthouse built on the Oregon Coast in 1857. The current lighthouse dates back to 1890.
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We really needed a place to stay and this one was open. It was cool we decided to hang out hammocks up in the trees and sleep in them for the night. We found lots of wood and had a nice fire. We were right in the sand dunes with lots of dune buggies! It did rain on us during the night so we ended up sleeping in the car. There were also lots of nats/mosquitos which were very annoying but kinda went away as it got darker outside.
This campground is still a favorite of mine due to its great access to the dunes and beautiful views. The dunes have five fingers all of which have their own unique view of the dunes, lakes, and ocean.
These campgrounds are primitive, in that there are no firepits, hookups or restrooms. If you need to use the restroom you need to drive/ride down to the parking lot. The park host is friendly and knowledgeable.
If you're into riding quads or ATVs, then this is the place to go. There are miles of sand dunes with great step climbs and great views. We were able to pull our pop-up camper right out on the dunes. This is home to the notorious Banshee hill, a long step climb that can be intimidating if you are new but a thrill to ride up.
You have to be cautious though, lots of people get suck pulling their campers out onto the sand. You need to take your tire pressure down to 15psi. Know where your going and walk it first.
There are restrooms at the parking lots which are a but if a ride to get to.
This is honestly one of my favorite places to camp because it's the access to the dunes.
We enjoyed our visit here other than the fact that it was so loud all the time. It makes sense due to the fact that's it's a off-road vehicles paradise! We just hadn't considered the volume. Cool place though. Sand dunes right on the beach. As far as the eye can see! Dogs are welcome here which is why we chose this spot. If we bring dirt bikes next time we will definitely stay here again!