Moon Pacific Northwest Camping

The Complete Guide to Tent and RV Camping in Washington and Oregon

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By Tom Stienstra

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This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around June 26, 2018. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

Pristine mountain lakes, dramatic coastlines, and unforgettable national forests: Moon Pacific Northwest Camping has a spot for you. Inside you’ll find:
  • A Campsite for Everyone: A variety of campgrounds and RV parks, from family-friendly car camping to secluded hike-ins, plus dog-friendly and wheelchair-accessible options
  • Ratings and Essentials: Campsites are rated on a helpful scenic scale and marked with amenities like restrooms, trailhead access, picnic areas, laundry, piped water, showers, and playgrounds
  • Recreation Highlights: Discover nearby hiking, swimming, fishing, water-skiing, whitewater rafting, hot springs, and options for winter sports
  • Maps and Directions: Easy-to-use maps and detailed driving directions for each campground
  • Trusted Advice: Expert outdoorsman Tom Stienstra is always on the move, having traveled thousands of miles across Washington and Oregon over the past 25 years
  • Tips and Tools: Information on equipment, food and cooking, first aid, and insect protection, as well as background information on the climate, landscape, and history of the campsites
  • In-Depth Coverage: Moon Pacific Northwest Camping covers Oregon and Washington, including: the Olympic Peninsula and the Washington Coast, Seattle and Puget Sound, the Northern and Southern Cascades, Northeastern Washington, the Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, Southeastern Washington, the Oregon Coast, Portland and the Willamette Valley, Mount Hood, and Northeastern and Southeastern Oregon
Whether you’re a veteran camper or pitching a tent for the first time, with Moon’s comprehensive coverage and strategic advice you’ll be ready for your next adventure.

Sticking to the RV? Try Moon West Coast RV Camping. Can’t get enough of the Northwest? Try Moon Washington Camping or Moon Oregon Camping.

Excerpt

How to Use This Book

ABOUT THE CAMPGROUND PROFILES

The campgrounds are listed in a consistent, easy-to-read format to help you choose the ideal camping spot. If you already know the name of the specific campground you want to visit, or the name of the surrounding geological area or nearby feature (town, national or state park, forest, mountain, lake, river, etc.), look it up in the index and turn to the corresponding page. Here is a sample profile:

ABOUT THE ICONS

The icons in this book are designed to provide at-a-glance information on activities, facilities, and services available on-site or within walking distance of each campground.

Hiking trails
Biking trails
Swimming
Fishing
Boating
Canoeing and/or kayaking
Winter sports
Hot springs
Pets permitted
Playground
Wheelchair accessible
RV sites
Tent sites
5 Percent Club

ABOUT THE SCENIC RATING

Each campground profile employs a scenic rating on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the least scenic and 10 being the most scenic. A scenic rating measures only the overall beauty of the campground and environs; it does not take into account noise level, facilities, maintenance, recreation options, or campground management. The setting of a campground with a lower scenic rating may simply not be as picturesque that of as a higher rated campground, however other factors that can influence a trip, such as noise or recreation access, can still affect or enhance your camping trip. Consider both the scenic rating and the profile description before deciding which campground is perfect for you.

MAP SYMBOLS

ABOUT THE MAPS

This book is divided into chapters based on major regions in the state; an overview map of these regions precedes the table of contents. Each chapter begins with a map of the region, which is further broken down into detail maps. Campgrounds are noted on the detail maps by number.




INTRODUCTION

Author’s Note

Best Campgrounds

B Most Scenic

B Families

B Fishing

B Hiking

B Waterfalls

B Waterfront Campgrounds

B Wildlife-Viewing

Camping Tips

SLEEPING GEAR

HIKING AND FOOT CARE

CLOTHING AND WEATHER PROTECTION

FOOD AND COOKING GEAR

FIRST AID AND INSECT PROTECTION

CATCHING FISH, AVOIDING BEARS, AND HAVING FUN

CAMPING OPTIONS

CAMP ETHICS AND POLITICS

OUTDOORS WITH KIDS

PREDICTING WEATHER

Author’s Note

When my family and friends throughout the Pacific Northwest heard I was writing this book, they all instantly hated me! They figured their favorite spots would be revealed to all. But after reading the book, they don’t hate me anymore (except for this one cousin). That is because they have discovered, as I have, that Oregon and Washington are filled with beautiful, little-used campgrounds that are perfect jump-off points for adventure—and there are hundreds of outstanding destinations, in addition to their sprinkling of personal favorites.

Looking for mystery? There are hundreds of hidden, rarely used campgrounds listed and mapped in this book that most people have never dreamed of. Excitement? At many of them, you’ll find the sizzle with the steak: the hike to a great lookout or the big fish at the end of your line. Fun? The Camping Tips section of this book can help you take the futility out of your trips and put the fun back in. Add it up, put it in your cash register, and you can turn a camping trip into the satisfying adventure it’s meant to be, whether it’s just an overnight quickie or a month-long expedition.

Going on a camping trip can be like trying to put hiking boots on an octopus. You’ve tried it too, eh? Instead of a relaxing and fun trip full of adventure, it turns into a scenario called “You Against the World.” You might as well try to fight a volcano. But it doesn’t have to be that way, and that’s what this book is all about. If you give it a chance, the information herein can remove the snarls, confusion, and occasional, volcanic temper explosions that keep people at home, locked away from the action.

It’s estimated that 95 percent of American vacationers use only 5 percent of the country’s available recreation areas. With this book, you can leave the herd, wander, and be free. You can join the inner circle, the Five Percenters who know the great hidden areas used by so few people. To join the Five Percent Club, take a hard look at the maps for the areas you wish to visit and the corresponding campground listings. As you study the camps, you’ll start to feel a sense of excitement building, a feeling that you are about to unlock a door and venture into a world that is rarely viewed. When you feel that excitement, act on it. Parlay that energy into a great trip.

The campground maps and listings can serve in two ways: 1) If you’re on the road late in the day and you’re stuck for a spot for the night, you can likely find one nearby; or 2) if you are planning a trip, you can tailor a vacation to fit exactly into your plans rather than heading off and hoping—maybe praying—it turns out all right.

For the latter, you may wish to obtain additional maps, particularly if you are venturing into areas governed by the U.S. Forest Service or Bureau of Land Management. Both are federal agencies that offer low-cost maps detailing all hiking trails, lakes, streams, and backcountry camps reached via logging roads. The Resource Guide at the back of this book details how to obtain these and other maps.

Backcountry camps listed in this book are often in primitive and rugged settings but provide the sense of isolation that you may want from a trip. They also provide good jump-off points for backpacking trips, if that’s your calling. These camps are often free, and I have listed hundreds of them.

At the other end of the spectrum are the developed parks for RVs. They offer a home away from home, with everything from full hookups to a grocery store and laundry room. Instead of isolation, an RV park provides a place to shower and get outfitted for food and clean clothes. For RV cruisers, it’s a place to stay in high style while touring the area. RV parks range in price, depending on location, and an advance deposit may be necessary in summer.

Somewhere between the two extremes are hundreds and hundreds of campgrounds that provide a compromise: beautiful settings and some facilities, with a small overnight fee. Piped water, vault toilets, and picnic tables tend to come with the territory. Fees for these sites are usually in the $10-35 range, with the higher-priced sites located near population centers. Because they offer a bit of both worlds, they are in high demand. Reservations are usually advised, and at state parks, particularly during the summer season, you can expect company. This doesn’t mean you need to forgo them in hopes of a less confined environment. For one thing, most state parks have set up quotas so that visitors don’t feel as if they’ve been squeezed in with a shoehorn. For another, the same parks are often uncrowded during the off-season and on weekdays.

Before your trip, you’ll want to get organized, and that’s when you must start putting boots on that giant octopus. The trick to organization for any task is breaking it down to its key components and then solving each element independent of the others. Remember the octopus. Grab a moving leg, jam on a boot, and make sure it’s on tight before reaching for another leg. Do one thing at a time, in order, and all will get done quickly and efficiently.

Now you can become completely organized for your trip in just one week, spending just a little time each evening on a given component. Getting organized is an unnatural act for many. By splitting up the tasks, you take the pressure out of planning and put the fun back in.

As you might figure, this is not a hobby for me, as it is for some part-time writers who publish books. This is my full-time job. Because I spend up to 200 days a year in the field, I understand how seriously people take their fun, what they need to know to make their trips work, as well as their underlying fears that they might get stuck for the night without a spot. I get tons of emails and letters, and I read each one carefully. These have been of great benefit. In the process, I have incorporated dozen of suggestions from readers to make this the book they want it to be. Your comments and questions are always welcome and appreciated. As a full-tome outdoors writer, the question I am asked more than any other is: “Where are you going this week?”

All of the answers are in this book.

Best Campgrounds

Can’t decide where to stay? Here are my picks for the best campgrounds in seven different categories.

B Most Scenic

Fort Flagler State Park, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Kalaloch, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Pacific Beach State Park, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Fay Bainbridge Park, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Moran State Park Ferry-In, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Turn Island Marine State Park Boat-In, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Camano Island State Park, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Panorama Point, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Harts Pass Walk-In, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Kamloops Island, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Honey Bear Campground & RV Resort, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Long Bow Group, Portland and the Willamette Valley, tap here.

Piety Island Boat-In, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Cove Creek, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Paul Dennis, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Anthony Lakes, Northeastern Oregon, tap here.

Scott Lake Walk-In, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

North Waldo, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Lava Lake, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Squaw Lake Hike-In, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

B Families

Lena Lake Hike-In, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Kitsap Memorial State Park, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

KOA Lynden/Bellingham, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Bay View State Park, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Leavenworth/Pine Village KOA, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Ellensburg KOA, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Curlew Lake State Park, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Shore Acres Resort, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Henley’s Silver Lake Resort, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Yakima Sportsman State Park, Southeastern Washington, tap here.

Fort Stevens State Park, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Honey Bear Campground & RV Resort, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Cascade Locks Marine Park, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Hoover and Hoover Group, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Twin Lakes Resort, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Indian Mary Park, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Abbott Creek, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Lake of the Woods Resort, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Drews Creek, Southeastern Oregon, tap here.

B Fishing

Coppermine Bottom, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

West Beach Resort Ferry-In, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Doe Island State Park Boat-In, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Pearrygin Lake State Park, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Chopaka Lake, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Conconully State Park, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Rock Lakes, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Long Lake, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Offut Lake Resort, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Mossyrock Park, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Silver Lake Motel and Resort, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Potholes State Park, Southeastern Washington, tap here.

Waldport/Newport KOA, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Port of Siuslaw RV Park and Marina, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Carter Lake, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Trillium Lake, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Gone Creek, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Pelton, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Belknap Hot Springs Resort, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Mallard Marsh, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Trapper Creek, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Drews Creek, Southeastern Oregon, tap here.

B Hiking

Campbell Tree Grove, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Moran State Park Ferry-In, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Silver Fir, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Beaver Plant Lake Hike-In, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Harts Pass Walk-In, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Mount Spokane State Park, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Lower Falls, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Beacon Rock State Park, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Nehalem Falls, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Cape Lookout State Park, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Cape Blanco State Park, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Eagle Creek, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Toll Gate, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Belknap Hot Springs Resort, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Boulder Flat, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Natural Bridge, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Aspen Point, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

B Waterfalls

Wallace Falls State Park Walk-In, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Denny Creek, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Silver Falls, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Douglas Falls, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Ohanapecosh, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Lower Falls, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Rainier, tap here.

Palouse Falls State Park, Southeastern Washington, tap here.

Nehalem Falls, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Alsea Falls, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Ainsworth State Park, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Salmon Creek Falls, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Susan Creek, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Steamboat Falls, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Hemlock Lake, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

B Waterfront Campgrounds

Lena Lake Hike-In, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Coho, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Skokomish Park at Lake Cushman, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Lake Sylvia State Park, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Birch Bay State Park, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Larrabee State Park, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Maple Grove, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Pearrygin Lake State Park, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Twenty-Five Mile Creek State Park, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Lake Chelan State Park, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Spring Canyon, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Loon Lake Recreation Area, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Laird Lake, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Lost Lake, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Trillium Lake, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Meditation Point, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Jubilee Lake, Northeastern Oregon, tap here.

Wallowa Lake State Park, Northeastern Oregon, tap here.

Bull Prairie Lake, Northeastern Oregon, tap here.

Middle Fork, Northeastern Oregon, tap here.

Driftwood, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Hemlock Lake, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Gold Lake, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Bolan Lake, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Campbell Lake, Southeastern Oregon, tap here.

Dog Lake, Southeastern Oregon, tap here.

B Wildlife-Viewing

Bear Creek, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Ocean City State Park, The Olympic Peninsula and Washington Coast, tap here.

Birch Bay State Park, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Larrabee State Park, Seattle and the Puget Sound, tap here.

Pearrygin Lake State Park, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Napeequa Crossing, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Lake Wenatchee State Park, The Northern Cascades, tap here.

Palmer Lake, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Haag Cove, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Big Meadow Lake, Northeastern Washington, tap here.

Cape Lookout State Park, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Seal Rocks RV Cove, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Port of Siuslaw RV Park and Marina, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Harris Beach State Park, The Oregon Coast, tap here.

Pelton, The Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, tap here.

Penland Lake, Northeastern Oregon, tap here.

Crooked River Ranch RV Park, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Bolan Lake, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Mount Ashland, The Southern Cascades, tap here.

Jackson Creek, Southeastern Oregon, tap here.

Camping Tips

SLEEPING GEAR

On an eve long ago in the mountain pines, my dad, brother, and I had rolled out our sleeping bags and were bedded down for the night. After the pre-trip excitement, a long drive, an evening of trout fishing and a barbecue, we were like three tired doggies who had played too much.

But as I looked up at the stars, I was suddenly wide awake. I was still wired. A half hour later? No change. Wide awake.

And as little kids can do, I had to wake up ol’ Dad to tell him about it. “Hey, Dad, I can’t sleep.”

After the initial grimace, he said: “This is what you do. Watch the sky for a shooting star and tell yourself that you cannot go to sleep until you see at least one shooting star. As you wait and watch, you will start getting tired, and it will be difficult to keep your eyes open. But tell yourself, you must keep watching. Then you’ll start to really feel tired. When you finally see a shooting star, you’ll go to sleep so fast you won’t know what hit you.”

Well, I tried it that night and I don’t even remember seeing a shooting star, I went to sleep so fast.

Genre:

On Sale
Jun 26, 2018
Page Count
704 pages
Publisher
Moon Travel
ISBN-13
9781640498273

Tom Stienstra

About the Author

For over 30 years, Tom Stienstra’s full-time job has been to capture and communicate the outdoor experience. This has led him across California – fishing, hiking, camping, boating, biking, and flying – searching for the best of the outdoors and then writing about it.

Tom is the nation’s top-selling author of outdoors guidebooks. His documentary on the Tuolumne River received an Emmy in 2017. He has been inducted into the California Outdoor Hall of Fame and has twice been awarded National Outdoor Writer of the Year, newspaper division, by the Outdoor Writers Association of America. He has also been named California Outdoor Writer of the Year five times. Tom is the outdoors columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle; his articles appear on sfgate.com and in newspapers around the country. He also broadcasts a weekly radio show on KCBS-San Francisco.

Tom lives in Northern California. You can contact him directly via the website tomstienstra.com.

Learn more about this author