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Monday, October 12, 2009


Typical view at Collier Memorial State Park Our Opinion: Recommend.  This makes an excellent base camp for visits to Crater Lake.

Date of Stay: October 9 through 11, 2009.  Updated October 2011.

Weather During Stay:  Mostly sunny, cool days and COLD (mid-20’s) nights.

Sites: 50 FHU sites (30/50 amp) in two loops tucked among huge pine trees, heavily shaded.   Most sites are reasonably level and large enough to accommodate big rigs. Nine of the sites are pull-outs - quite close to the narrow campground road - while the rest are back ins.  The campground road and all the FHU sites are paved; an additional 18 dry camping sites are gravel with tent pads.  All sites are first-come, first-served - and were full each of the 3 nights we stayed there.  (Edit: plenty of space available in October of 2011, though early arrivals had a far better selection.)

Site 23, Collier Memorial State ParkOnsite facilities include restrooms with flush toilets and hot showers, laundry facilities, and pay phone.  Four sets of campground hosts kept the campground well-groomed and sold firewood.

Rate: We paid $13 per night (Oregon’s “Discovery season” rate) for 50 amp FHU.  The in-season rate is $17, still a bargain - but we heard the fees would be increasing by $4/night next year due to budget problems.  (Edit: Paid $17/night for FHU October 2011, Discovery Season rate.)

Phone/radio/TV: Good Verizon phone and aircard signals.  Our roof-top mounted TV satellite couldn’t find a signal through all the trees, though there were a few sites (very few) that might work.  No TV stations on the over-the-air antenna.  No radio stations - hurray for Sirius satellite radio!  (Edit: Jefferson Public Radio, an NPR station, available on 90.9 in October 2011.)

Clear blue water of Spring Creek, a short walk from the campground.Elevation/Landscape/Terrain: Flat, level parking at about 4,000 ft.  Views are of neighbors and tall pines.  A few of the sites on the south side of the campground had views of the Williamson River.

Lighting/Noise: Very dark and very quiet at night - lots of stars. 

Favorite Sites: We probably would opt for a site near the river next time - until we explored the campground on foot, we didn’t realize there is a river nearby.  We didn’t like any of the pull-outs along side the campground road, but they were snapped up by those who don’t like backing in.

Hiking/Walking: Though it was not immediately apparent, this campground has GREAT walking.  Beautiful, clear Spring Creek joins the Williamson River very close to the campground, and trails along the riverbanks are a real treat. 

Spacious sites, but no privacyThe state park is also home to the interesting Collier Memorial Logging Museum and Pioneer Village, a short walk away along the river.

Comments: This campground would rate a RAVE but for one thing: lack of privacy in the sites.  The sites are roomy and very well maintained, but have no bushes to provide any privacy at all… that’s how it is in a pine forest.  We certainly will return, though.  Only 25 beautiful miles from the campground to the southern entrance to Crater Lake National Park.

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