Driving cross country, back east from the coast of Oregon and got in at night. Pulled down the road and took a steep hill climb (plenty of sites without doing this) to get up above the flats for the sunrise. Boy was it worth it. Watching the sun rise over the salt flats the next morning was just short of spiritual.
We were originally supposed to be at the East Fork Campground but a wildfire shut it down the day we arrived. So we drove to Deadman and nothing. And frankly the campsites were to close together and the toilet was gross. So we went maybe a half mile farther up the road and camped on a dispersed spot, by ourselves on the edge of lovely little deadman creek.
We did the tent sites. Excellent sites, though sites closer to the center of the canyon have zero shade. But well built, with a picnic table and grill, and leveled. Pretty little state park but…one bathroom was broken and the code they gave us for the women's showers didn't work. Very confused young man as my wife exited the man's shower.
We were chased out of Valley of the Gods by a massive dust storm and came here, finding a nice spot along the San Juan River and right below the hat. Simple, no amenities dispersed camping but the road was in reasonably good shape, even after a light rain. Thanks to the dust storm we were treated to a tremendous sunset!
We stayed in the tent only portion.. with a rooftop tent. Problem being there are no pull in spots for the individual tent sites….just parking along the camp road. Had to pitch our rooftop tent over the parking barrier. Also, sites are right on top of each other. On the plus side the creek is pretty and loud enough to drown out the road not far away.
Listen, it's a day use area that you just so happen to be allowed to camp in. Its free. There's water and a pit toilet. The lake is pretty. Not going to do better for free and in this stretch of country.
Was clean-ish, but extremely out of date with a lot of broken and closed amenities. Showed up during open hours, tried to claim our reservation….and there was no one there at all. No staff. No humans. Not being able to register wasn't a problem because we had our pick of sites. Site was in decent shape with power and water. Camped and moved on…