Bridge Creek Group Campground sits in Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest in northwest Washington. Nestled in a mountainous forest near the confluence of Bridge Creek and Icicle Creek, the campground offers a delightful setting for groups and large gatherings.
Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest offers stunning scenic views, with high, glaciated alpine peaks, valleys of old growth forest and rugged shrub-steppe country making up the diverse landscape. Elevations range from below 1,000 feet to over 9,000 feet.
Precipitation varies greatly throughout the area, ranging from approximately 140 inches along the Cascade Crest to only 10 inches along the eastern edge. Visitors can expect many days of warm, sunny weather in the summer, and winters with clear skies and plenty of snow.
Goat Rocks Wilderness is a stunning adventure for those wanting to traverse higher elevations. Peaks within the area are remnants of an extinct volcano, taking the name "Goat Rocks" in honor of the numerous mountain goats traversing this isolated region. Gilbert Peak is the highest summit in this area at an elevation of 8,184 feet.
Bridge Creek Group Campground offers outdoor enthusiasts the opportunity to hike, fish, bike and enjoy a long list of outdoor recreational activities throughout the year.
Icicle River, adjacent to the campground, offers a scenic backdrop for swimmers braving its cold, refreshing waters. Anglers may also want to cast a line into the deep pools lining the shore. Populations of rainbow and brown trout prevail in this waterway.
The nearby Fourth of July Trail offers hikers expansive ridge line views and challenging terrain. Beginning in the forest at 4,000 feet, the trail quickly climbs in elevation, out of the trees into more open, arid landscapes. The trail continues through mountain meadows with spectacular views of the Stuart Mountain Range and Icicle Valley.
At 10.6 miles, this is a solid day hike, though backpackers can hook up connecting trails to continue for multiple days though adjacent wilderness settings.
Bridge Creek Group Campground has one large site that accommodates up to 70 people and 35 vehicles. The site is equipped with picnic tables, a group campfire ring, drinking water and vault toilets.
There are also 6 single sites available with picnic tables, a fire ring, and a vault toilet on a first-come first-served basis.
Visitors enjoy the North Cascades and Mt. Rainer National Parks, where interpretive programs and exhibits offer education about the diverse landscape and history of the area.
The spectacular Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), one of the worlds premier National Scenic Trails, showcases some of North Americas most fantastic scenery, winding its way its way from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon and Washington, and is accessible near the campground.
Remote location, although it is VERY hard to reserve a spot. I would recommend making travels plans up to 3 months in advance
CAMPGROUND REVIEW (Words from Megan, Photos from Coby!)
- Proximity to climbing: We were able to access bouldering in less than ten minutes
- Spacious: There was enough space to pitch a tent (if we had one), hang hammocks, and do yoga!
- The river: the campground is next to Icicle Creek which we was lovely to listen to and our pup loved splashing around and cooling down.
My husband and I decided to come to Leavenworth for a long weekend of bouldering in both Icicle and Tumwater canyons. We came relatively early on Friday, but finding a spot still proved to be difficult. You can't reserve campsites at Bridge Creek ahead of time (aside from the massive 75+ group camp), so we had our fingers crossed to find a site that would have a firepit, picnic table, and a nice landscape!
We got pretty lucky. After doing a lap through the Eight Mile Campground (which was PACKED), we rumbled down the long dirt road to Bridge Creek Campground. The first site was available, so Coby parked the Escape Campervan, and I went up to the kiosk to pay for the night.
6 campsites are located at Bridge Creek which makes it private, secluded, and quiet. Our site was right by the water which was great for our Border Collie Nala to cool off in (it was 80+ degrees that weekend). We had neighbors right next door, but a downed tree made the camp boundaries pretty clear. There's a pit toilet which the camp host keeps impeccably clean, and there was plenty of hand sanitizer in the dispenser.
The sites were $19 per night–pretty standard. If we planned to stay in Leavenworth another night we would have been lucky to stay here! Climbing is scattered along Icicle Canyon and easily accessible from the campground.
It's worth mentioning that while we were there (May 11-12), there was a flood warning for the dam at the top of the canyon. A warning sign was posted at the information kiosk letting campers know that they're in the flood zone, and to be prepared to move to higher ground. This made us uneasy, but figured if it were truly a concern, they would have evacuated the canyon.
- Ability to camp anywhere! We stayed at Bridge Creek the first night, then the second night we camped off a National Forest road in the middle of nowhere!
- Having a kitchen setup and ready to use! It made breakfast and coffee better than ever
- The fridge! We didn't have to worry about getting ice and draining a cooler. The Dometic fridge kept all our food cold it was so easy to use.
As an employee of The Dyrt, I get to test out some pretty rad gear from time to time. The Escape Campervan takes the cake. We decided to rent a campervan out of the Seattle Depot early on Friday morning. When we drove into the lot, Boba, our home for the weekend, was all polished up and ready for adventure.
I don't have enough good things to say about my time in the Escape Campervan. For starters, the unique, artist-painted vans are a joy to look at. I felt proud driving through the outskirts of Seattle and into Leavenworth with a piece of art on display. And it's so easy to drive. I was nervous–I typically drive a Toyota Prius which is substantially smaller than a Ford Transit-150. However, driving the van was easy, and the backup camera made maneuvering a relative breeze (aside from tight parking lots, I imagine, which we avoided).
Inside, the campervan boasts about 40 square feet of space. There are hidden storage compartments beneath the table, and under the bed once converted. Also, behind the dining area there are two compartments for additional storage, as well as storage above. We put items in the compartments that we didn't need often, like climbing gear once we moved on from Leavenworth.
Shifting the dining room area into the bed was easier than expected and takes about two minutes from start to finish–meaning linens on, pillows set up, and gear stowed away. There's also plenty of headspace when you're sitting in the dining room. Coby and I were able to eat meals comfortably, and play cards without feeling cramped.
The kitchen is organized towards the rear of the vehicle. The two back doors hinge open (and can lock into place if it's windy), and the stove is velcroed to a sliding shelf so it's easy to access, use, and put away. If you want to cook dinner at the campsite instead of in the van, simply move the stove to the picnic area and create your campfire gourmet meal.
In the kitchen, everything has a place. There's a bin for pots and pans, a tray for utensils, a cubby for propane, and plenty of space for grocery bags full of food (and in our case, La Croix). Above the cubby with utensils, there's a hand pump sink which takes quite a few pumps to get working, but helps to conserve water. The gray water immediately runs out the drain, and if you're in a place where it's kosher, can run out onto the ground. Otherwise, a cap sits on the tube so you can hold the water and drain when you're in an area where it's allowed.
My favorite part of the van setup is the Dometic drawer fridge. Normally, Coby and I don't take anything to the campground that requires refrigeration because our 20-year-old cooler is essentially useless. But with the Dometic fridge we could bring cheese for our baked potatoes, AND keep our La Croix cold, which, for Coby, was a pretty big deal.
We also rented the additional pop-up tent which was SO FUN to use. We liked how easy it was to set up (unlatch the two side latches and lift), and sleeping on top of the car felt like the penthouse suite! The sides of the pop-up are mesh, so we had a lovely cross-breeze as we slept. My only concern would be for taller people. Coby is about 5'9" and was end to end in the popup tent.
We would 110% recommend renting an Escape Campervan. They're easy to drive, and they've literally thought of everything, from the camp chairs to the coffee french press to the fridge space. It felt like a dream trip, and we definitely didn't take it for granted!