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    Default 2020 Camping thread

    Started our summer planning last night at a NYE party with the in-laws, so let's talk. Where ya camping in 2020?

    National Parks reservations open January 6th for Pacific Rim, and January 8th for Banff park. Other parks vary.
    https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/voyage-travel/reserve

    BC Provincial Parks allow reservations 4 months ahead of arrival dates.

    Alberta Provincial Parks allow reservations can be made 90 days ahead of arrival for individual campsites, and starting February 4th for Group Camp sites.


    As for me, after our big trip to the coast last year, we won't be going any further than McDonald Creek (Nakusp) this year. Long days in the truck aren't fun. Hoping to get back to Dutch Creek for a week. Love it down there.
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    Going to take 3 weeks in July to drive over to vancouver and down to san francisco, any recommendations of us campgrounds would be great? want to come back up via koocanusa.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nzwasp View Post
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    Going to take 3 weeks in July to drive over to vancouver and down to san francisco, any recommendations of us campgrounds would be great? want to come back up via koocanusa.
    Not for US, but Kikomun Creek in BC is right by koocanusa and it's awesome. IIRC some weeks book up very early in the year, so you'll have to be on the ball if you want to stay there.

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    there's a real patchwork of places to camp in the USA. you have national parks, state parks, but also national forests and sate forests. Generally the "forest" campgrounds are less developed and cheaper, both of which I find appealing. check out recreation.gov for federal ones. May take more digging for state forests/parks.

    Are you set on going through Vancouver? There's several east-west options in Washington, including the amazing Highway 20. Lots of hills, but a really cool road.

    I can't recall how old your kids are, but consider staying at Farragut state park for a few nights to enjoy silverwood theme park.
    North Cascades national Park is really nice. Everything on the Olympic peninsula is really nice.

    On your way there or back, Moyie in BC is a nice one, worth two nights, and a reasonable distance back to Calgary in a day.
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    Thanks for the tips @cjblair and @ExtraSlow , my kids are 7 and 5. We went to that moyie place a few years ago. I’m interested what driving through major cities in the USA with a trailer is like? Or should I park outside and just drive in for day trips

    We plan to stay in Vancouver and San Fran for 5 days each because we have family there.

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    Driving through is no biggie, but I personally plan my fuel and food stops for smaller places away from the city centre. Can't really stand Vancouver, so I'm no help there.

    If you camp outside of town, unhook and leave the trailer parked for your day trips. Into town. That seems like the winning idea.
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    That's a pretty long trip too. 5000 km round trip. If you have 23 days, (three weeks plus a weekend), and you are spending ten days with family, that doesn't leave much time for anything but driving. Sounds gross, but my family hates long days in the truck.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ExtraSlow View Post
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    National Parks reservations open January 6th for Pacific Rim, and January 8th for Banff park. Other parks vary.
    https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/voyage-travel/reserve

    BC Provincial Parks allow reservations 4 months ahead of arrival dates.

    Alberta Provincial Parks allow reservations can be made 90 days ahead of arrival for individual campsites, and starting February 4th for Group Camp sites.


    Thanks for posting this.
    We're planning to take a week in mid-Aug and am looking to book somewhere in BC. Traveling with another family and each of us have young kids (all under 4).
    Something relatively close with lots to do at the camp site would be ideal. Stayed at McLoed Meadows last year and found every day we had to drive 30min into Radium/Invermere to do anything.

    Going to try for Kikomun Creek, Moyie or Red Streak.

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    My top tip if you are spending a week is to book a Sunday or Monday arrival. less traffic on the roads, and more selection of campsites. Sounds like you want to be near a town?
    I like Revelstoke as a town, has lots of options, but you will be 20 minutes outside town at Martha Creek, or further are Blanket Creek. There are campgrounds in town, but I've never stayed at them, so I can't comment.
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    Anyone have favourite rec site camping anywhere between Waiprous and Nordegg? Like legit campgrounds with outhouses, but out of the way. How busy are places like James-Wilson and Red Deer River? Or Pembina Forks? I like how places south like Dutch creek are pretty quiet even on long weekends.
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    ^
    What about North Ghost? Heavily treed and not normally full. I imagine it’s because the rates are expensive for a non powered site.

    Both North and South Red Deer don’t have power either but one has a shower house, can’t remember which however. Both tend to be full long weekends like most around Red Deer. The last 4 or 5 years I have noticed insane amounts of campgrounds totally packed most weekends. I would love to find one near Calgary that didn’t involve me putting the trailer out on a Wednesday for the weekend like sandy mcnabb, Carsland or other first comes require.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kavy View Post
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    I would love to find one near Calgary that didn’t involve me putting the trailer out on a Wednesday for the weekend like sandy mcnabb, Carsland or other first comes require.
    South is better for that stuff. Cataract, Etherington, Livingstone, Racehorse, Oldman, Dutch etc. Can roll out friday night on a "regular" weekend and get something. Top Tip though, DO NOT haul a trailer over highway 532 AKA The Hump Road. Use either 541 (Highwood road) or the Maycroft/Oldman Gap road.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ExtraSlow View Post
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    Anyone have favourite rec site camping anywhere between Waiprous and Nordegg? Like legit campgrounds with outhouses, but out of the way. How busy are places like James-Wilson and Red Deer River? Or Pembina Forks? I like how places south like Dutch creek are pretty quiet even on long weekends.
    Abraham lake right after Nordegg is absolutely beautiful but it is crown land camping. But Fish Lake and Thompson Creek are very nice campgrounds that are not far from Nordegg.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Does anyone here do winter camping? I was thinking of taking my truck camper out on a mild weekend (Warmer then -5) for camping at Elk Island because its so close to Edmonton.

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    Any recommendations for tent camping? I've only ever camped with family north of Edmonton so don't really have any idea of good spots to go.

    - Would prefer near some water, either a river or lake, something the dog can play in a bit during the day.
    - Tent only so no need for trailer or hookup spots
    - Would prefer to park at the site but don't mind a short walk if its park and trek stuff a couple hundred meters for more privacy
    - 2hrs or less away from Calgary
    - Friday - Sunday on a non-long weekend, don't want to have to go early and set stuff up
    Nolan

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    Quote Originally Posted by ExtraSlow View Post
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    My top tip if you are spending a week is to book a Sunday or Monday arrival. less traffic on the roads, and more selection of campsites. Sounds like you want to be near a town?
    I like Revelstoke as a town, has lots of options, but you will be 20 minutes outside town at Martha Creek, or further are Blanket Creek. There are campgrounds in town, but I've never stayed at them, so I can't comment.
    Never camped near Revy but will look at those. Usually if we are in Revy we are up near the Glacier House so we can dirt bike on the trails.
    Interested in something close enough to town if we need to grab groceries or beer. Ideally I'd like to find a site that we can stay at all day with entertainment for the kiddo. This way day can get into the beers in the early afternoon.

    Quote Originally Posted by ExtraSlow View Post
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    Anyone have favourite rec site camping anywhere between Waiprous and Nordegg? Like legit campgrounds with outhouses, but out of the way. How busy are places like James-Wilson and Red Deer River? Or Pembina Forks? I like how places south like Dutch creek are pretty quiet even on long weekends.
    We've camped near Dutch Creek many of times but only on crown land. Never been to the camp site specifically. There are a ton of great spots in the meadows near the river.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nzwasp View Post
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    Going to take 3 weeks in July to drive over to vancouver and down to san francisco, any recommendations of us campgrounds would be great? want to come back up via koocanusa.
    We did the West Coast Highway almost a decade ago. I wish I could remember any of the campgrounds for you, but it's vague now. The only three that stood out for me was the Canon Beach RV resort, because we were literally the 2nd to last people to get a spot, and there was about 20 people behind us who didn't get in, also the campground sucked. FULL of assholes with yappy dogs that would not shut the fuck up. I'd avoid it. Another was a really nice private campground somewhere in northern Cali. Sweetest old couple in the world, and it was kind of religous (they did bible camps), but it was the most peaceful and serene spot we've ever camped at. Can't remember the name, or exact location, but it's likely closed by now as that couple was likely in their 80's a decade ago.

    The last is more south and inland, but was my favorite of the trip, but also my wife's most hated. Eureka Dunes, California.

    Eq4EKqb.jpg

    7RzbwoX.jpg

    (for the record, we didn't actually stay there, my wife refused after the outside air temp got to 48*C)
    Last edited by Tik-Tok; 01-02-2020 at 06:53 PM.

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    My rule of thumb is anywhere with the words "RV resort" is to be avoided at all costs. I'd rather camp at wal-mart if I have no other options, because the class people will be better. Also anywhere that asks what type of RV you are bringing, because that's often a sign of pretentious assholes. I prefer my assholes to be low-class, like me.
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    I used to go to the walk-in sites at Lower Lake back in the day. I remember if you went Friday on a non long weekend you would always get a spot. Assuming these are still FCFS, would that still be the case?

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    Quote Originally Posted by holden View Post
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    I used to go to the walk-in sites at Lower Lake back in the day. I remember if you went Friday on a non long weekend you would always get a spot. Assuming these are still FCFS, would that still be the case?
    The Mt Sarrail campsite? It was always quiet when biking by it, other then long weekends.

    Odd to note that it looks like all of Lower Lake is going to be reservable this year, versus just A loop

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    Just a heads up that the Transcanada around Golden is reportedly going to be closed for up to 15 weeks in Summer this year.

    I cant find any details of dates for this closure but its really going to throw a wrench in my travel plans - highway 3 is quite slow.

    This is our travel plan for our US trip:

    Date Day Where Distance From Previous Stop
    7/3/2020 Friday Kelowna or Nelson 7/8
    7/4/2020 Saturday Vancouver 4/8
    7/5/2020 Sunday Vancouver -
    7/6/2020 Monday Vancouver -
    7/7/2020 Tuesday Vancouver -
    7/8/2020 Wednesday Seattle 2.5
    7/9/2020 Thursday Seattle -
    7/10/2020 Friday Nehalem 4
    7/11/2020 Saturday Nehalem 4
    7/12/2020 Sunday Jedediah Smith 7
    7/13/2020 Monday Jedediah Smith -
    7/14/2020 Tuesday San Fran 7
    7/15/2020 Wednesday San Fran -
    7/16/2020 Thursday San Fran -
    7/17/2020 Friday San Fran -
    7/18/2020 Saturday somewhere to portland 5
    7/19/2020 Sunday Portland 5
    7/20/2020 Monday Portland -
    7/21/2020 Tuesday Spokane 5.5
    7/22/2020 Wednesday spokane -
    7/23/2020 Thursday Calgary ?

    Alot of driving but we are also planning on staying 2+ nights at all but one stop so that we can actually do things.
    Last edited by nzwasp; 01-08-2020 at 02:10 PM.

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