Mike M.
Phoenix, AZ
Joined August 2018
Great winter camping

Campsite 36

Spent the night close to home as my dog had never been camping and I wanted to see if he liked it (he does!).

Booked online about two weeks prior for a Monday night stay and most of the campground was available. When I arrived about 75-80% was full, so good idea to book ahead.

Some of the sites are super close together, especially on the newer loops (sites 75-104 and 106-134). They'd be ok with a trailer, but I'd feel cramped in with my tent. The main part of the campground where I was is a bit more spread out, with vegetation between most of the sites.

My site had a big pad for the tent that was raked, a picnic table, a fire ring/grill, easy access to the hiking trails, and a great view of the mountains.

Beware during the winter as the wind can come up during the night and morning hours, so stake your tent down well. It got up to maybe 15 mph, so not super strong, but typical for the edges of the valley.

Staff was friendly, and the bathroom was clean. I didn't use the shower.

One specific note about my site 36: don't book it if you'll be taking a 5th wheel or really any trailer. The access road is narrow and the parking spot is at a 90° angle so it'd be very difficult to back into. Better to pick one of the pull thru spots. If you have a campervan or are tent camping then it's a great spot.

I'm glad I came here. Can't wait to come back! This would be an epic place during a full moon, or really anytime it's clear to see the stars. Too bad it was cloudy my entire stay.

Hidden Gem

I was surprised at how forested the campground was. Most of this area is junipers, but this campground is in a nice shady stand of pinon pines. I'd stay here again when going to the Grand Canyon.

I stayed Sunday-Tuesday in early August. I arrived Sunday around 5pm and the place was about 70% full. It was less than half full Monday night. I was in one of the spots furthest from the highway and there was very little highway noise.

-While there's little highway noise, the campground is less than a mile from the airport. Expect near constant air tour airplanes overhead from 6am to sunset. There's hardly any airplane traffic at night though, so once the sun goes down it's not an issue.

-DO NOT pick a site next to a bathroom. They're kept as clean as possible considering they're pit toilets, but OMG that smell….

-I wish the host was a little more proactive in enforcing the night time curfew. Generators are loud.

-Bring tough tent stakes. The ground is very hard below the first two inches (common in northern AZ). I destroyed two of my stakes.

I saw there's a few questions about a confusing check in, so here you go: Drive in and go find a vacant spot. Occupied spots will either have a sign saying that it's reserved, or a yellow slip of paper in a little green box in front of the campsite. Once you find a spot, park, note your site number, and walk back to the pay station to fill out the pay envelope and pay. Detach the flap of the envelope and put it in the green box at your site.