Reviewed Jun. 14, 2021

Lovely Site With a Great Tent Pad Along the River

Stayed in Site 78 in the upper part of Lodgepole, which was perfect. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, no one was in the site next to us. (That one, site 74, seemed really cramped. Someone had moved the picnic table to the tent pad, but there wasn't really much space to move it anywhere else. If someone had been in that site, we'd have had neighbors pretty close to us.) On the other side of this site is a hillside, so the neighbors on that side are further up. The river helps to drown out the other campground noise, but we lucked out with all good neighbors, even on the weekend.

Site 78 is NOT listed as a "walk in" site, but you do have to walk your stuff down a little hill to get to the site, which has a lovely, flat tent pad. (Only issue was on one part of the pad, Lodgepole chipmunks had made holes. We were able to put our 4-person tent so it wasn't over those holes. I'd be concerned about the chipmunks chewing through the tent if you put it over their two holes.)

Nice fire pit, with views of the river and of the bridge through the campground. We could watch people coming and going on the Tokopah Falls Trail across the river. Our picnic table was SLIGHTLY slanted, but not a big deal. Our site was just across from the bathrooms. (Bring a light for that. Bathrooms have no lights here, but there are flushing toilets and sinks.) It's uphill to the bathrooms, but not too bad. The water spigot was right by our site, too. And we were within easy walking distance of both the Tokopah Falls trailhead and the shuttle bus stop at the campground to other parts of the park. (In June of 2021, the shuttles were running regularly along routes 1 and 4, with 2 and 3 not running because of the pandemic.)

The showers were listed as "closed for the season," which also appeared to be pandemic related. This was a bit disappointing because we were hoping to shower at some point during our 4-night stay. So beware of that, if you really want a shower. The Lodgepole visitor's center was also closed because of the pandemic, but the market was open, where you could buy souvenirs, typical items in a camp market (wood, marshmallows, drinks, ice cream, etc…)

Rangers were friendly. (Look for Ranger Alex and say hello!) Put your food and scented items in bear boxes. We were told that a bear had been in the campground in the previous week. We also saw one up the Tokopah Falls trail, in the meadow upstream from the campground. There is a kitchen sink at the bathrooms. The trash and recycle bins were across from the bathrooms. There were also extra bear boxes here and there, in case your stuff doesn't fit in one box.

You're welcome to scavenge for kindling and small pieces of wood here or else just buy wood from the market. (It was about $11 per box.)

Overall, we enjoyed our stay. We loved some of the other sites along the river, as well, also in Upper Lodgepole. Lower Lodgepole was more open, with what looked to be more party types and larger groups, plus more RV's. Across the bridge was another area, which seemed to be a mix of RV's and tents, but my group agreed we'd stick with Upper Lodgepole as tenters.

Also, as noted on various websites, there's no cell phone service here. If you need to pop in to check a quick work email, there's slow wifi at the lodge about a 10 minute drive up the road. You can grab a wifi signal in the lobby there or grab a bite at their grill, but it's not fast wifi. Good enough for quick email answers though.

  • Sunset from Lodgepole site 78, looking toward site 73 and 72.
  • Site 78. Big tent pad. This is with a 4-person tent. Rocks around fire pit were handy to sit on. River is in background, down a little embankment. Easy walk.
  • Lodgepole site 78. You can see the table on the tent pad of  neighboring site 74, which does not appear to be in use during the 2020-2021 pandemic.
  • Lodgepole site 78. Our table is behind the tent. 74's table is to the left.
  • Looking from site 78 toward the parking for the site. You can also see the water spigot. Bathrooms are just to the left, out of the picture. There's a little bit of a walk from the car. The parking is not directly at the site, but the walk is not too bad.
  • Looking down at Lodgepole site 74 with 73 and 72 beyond that. (That's the bear box for 73 in the left background.)
  • View from our picnic table, toward the bridge, which leads to another section of the campground.
  • View of the river from our site. Some people were hopping the rocks to get from Tokopah Falls Trail to their campsite on this side of the river.
  • View of our site and the upper part of Lodgepole Campground from the Tokopah Falls Trail.

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