Welcome to our (very personal) reviews of the campsites we have visited. If you arrived here from a link on our travel blog, Semi-True Tales of Our Life On the Road, you can click here to read all of our campground reviews.

If you would like to know more about me, or contact us, click on "Who are We?" (to the right). For more information about what you can expect to find in these reviews, click on "About These Reviews". Finally, a note about the photos: hover your cursor over a photo to read the caption, or click the photo to enlarge it.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Site 9 ElksOur Opinion: Recommend.  This is a newer lodge with large, level RV parking in an appealing, hilly setting.

Date of Stay: October 20 through 26, 2010.

Weather During Stay: Pleasant fall weather with balmy days and cool nights (70‘s and 40‘s) - and one huge rain storm over the weekend.

Sites: Eight 30 amp E and water sites, one 50 amp and W site.  Sites are graveled, wide, and level.  All sites are back-ins. Space available for dry camping, but it is quite sloped. NEW: As of 2012, there is now a working, on-site dump.

Placerville LodgeRate: Recently raised from $15 to $17, with W and E at sites. 

Phone/radio/TV: Strong Verizon signal for phones and internet.  Tall oaks may obstruct TV satellite in west-facing sites.  Several TV stations on antenna, including the three major networks and PBS.  Local NPR on 90.9 and 91.3.

Elevation/Landscape/Terrain: Flat, level parking area in a hilly landscape at 1,390’ elevation.  Views of large oaks, lodge and local light commercial businesses.

Lighting/Noise: Light road noise.  A dog-grooming and pet-boarding facility next door is sometimes noisy during the day.  Night time lighting is moderate,  high, bright “streetlight” type lighting that is more or less intrusive depending on where you are parked.

Site 9, Placerville Elks, with lodge in the background.Favorite Sites: Most sites are the same, though site 6, facing west, has 50 amps.  Site 7 is shorter than most of the other sites, the only site not suitable for a big rig

Hiking/Walking: Head south over the hill to access little used paved roads in an undeveloped area.  A California state park, Folsom Lake, is 10-15 miles away with good hiking and biking. 

Comments: A much-better-than-average Elks RV parking area convenient to shopping and services, to Sacramento, and to small, historic, Placerville. Very friendly and active lodge.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


Approaching from the east Our Opinion: Rave, if you don’t want/need services.  Free, convenient, quiet spot to overnight or visit Great Basin National Park.

Date of Stay: October 15, 2010.

Weather During Stay:  In the 70’s when we arrived as the sun set, dropping to 40 for an overnight low.

Site Description:  This very large, scenic BLM pullout does triple duty as a picnic area, informal campground, and the trailhead for the Sacramento Pass trail, open to hikers, bikers, and horses.  It is located around 8 miles west of Hwy 487, the road that heads south to Baker and to Great Basin National Park from Hwy 50.  Our GPS shows the coordinates as N 39.12105, W 114.30559.  The pullout is on the south side of the highway, at Osceola Road (CR-35, gravel).

The pullout and loop roads are dirt/gravel.  A pit toilet and trash cans are located near the entrance, along with a couple of picnic tables and shade trees.  From there, a loop road climbs uphill, with large pullouts equipped with heavy, old picnic tables and sloped shade/wind shelters - 5 in all - against the very scenic backdrop of Wheeler Peak in an area of sage and evergreens. 

Our site as the sun set. Roads are wide, well-graded, and easily negotiated with a big rig. Besides the sites with picnic tables, there is additional space available for parking that could be used if the shelter areas were all occupied.   In addition, a slightly more primitive road continues uphill from the back of the upper level, with another set of pit toilets and additional parking around 1/2 mile farther (better for smaller rigs).

Rate:   Free.  No hookups.  No potable water.  No dump station.

Phone/radio/TV:  No Verizon service for phone or aircard.  No obstacles for satellite TV dish.  No NPR stations, or any other radio stations!

Elevation/landscape/terrain: This scenic pullout is located along Hwy 50, “The Loneliest Highway in America”, at 6,720 feet - a few miles east of the summit of Sacramento Pass.  As I write this, looking south towards Wheeler Peak (in Great Basin National Park) in mid-October, there is a blanket of snow on the mountaintop (13,000+ feet).  We are in rocky, rolling foothills, with a fairly thick covering of short, chubby pines, junipers and sagebrush.  Very, very appealing.

Lighting/noise:  VERY dark once the half-moon set.  The extreme quiet was broken very infrequently by a passing vehicle on Hwy 50.

Looking west across the central pond to our site. Favorite Sites:  They’re all good!  We’d pick whichever open site was most level.

Hiking/Walking:  The Sacramento Pass trail made a wonderful walk in the morning.  Easy to moderate.  Several loops provide hikes of varying lengths; we hiked 4 miles.

Comments:  We’ve visited remote Great Basin National Park twice before and have found that sites suitable for big motor homes are very limited.  After we almost torqued our windshield out on our last visit, we decided this Scenic Pullout looked like a better alternative (it is a 15 mile drive to the national park from here).  It looks like the other campers have the same idea – 3 sites were occupied when we arrived.  Though we are moving on after an overnight, this would be a fine place for longer stay while exploring the park.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Sites along the entrance road face west Our Opinion: Recommend, if you have Passport America or CCUSA.  At the discounted price, it is a real bargain for this area.

Date of Stay: October 7 through 14 , 2010.

Weather During Stay:  Perfect!  Sunny, with highs between 70 and 75 degrees; lows in the upper 40’s.

Site Description:  The 76 sites in this mellow park come in a huge variety of configurations, including many suitable for big rigs (and many NOT).  Fifty-five of the sites are pull-throughs.  The section of sites in front is comprised of two long rows running parallel to the entrance drive, facing west; past the office halfway back, the rows run east and west, with most of the sites facing north.  It appears that all sites are FHU (30/50 amps), with cable TV included. 

Cute little office areaRoads are dirt/gravel (and dust), as are sites.  Many sites have trees that provide some shade, and most have grass and a picnic table.  Sites are reasonably roomy for a commercial park; we had plenty of space for slides and our awning, with a grassy side yard for our chairs and picnic table.  Though our site was level, others in our row were not - we saw at least a couple long MH’s with their front wheels off the ground.

The little office complex is cute, with an appealing shaded outdoor seating area and restrooms.  Friendly, helpful, mellow staff offer plenty of brochures and advice to make your visit to Moab a good one. 

Rate:  This park participates in both Passport America and CampClubUSA.  We stayed for 8 nights at PA rates ($19.06, which included a $2/night surcharge for 50 amps and tax).  I don’t know if there are restrictions on length of stay at discounted rates.

Pullthrough Site 17Phone/radio/TV:  Excellent Verizon signal here for both phones and aircard (blazing fast).  WiFi is included, but we didn’t use it.  Our site had no obstacles for our roof-mounted satellite TV dish, and the included cable TV had dozens of channels.  NPR on 91.7.

Elevation/landscape/terrain: Located at around 4,200 ft., this is one of very few commercial RV parks in Moab that is not located on the main road, Hwy 191.  Local views are of neighboring rigs or the adjacent horse stables and arena.  Distant views are of red rock cliffs.

Lighting/noise:  Our site was comfortably dark at night.  Even though the park is not on Hwy 191, road noise was still noticeable at night with the windows open… but the noise level was acceptable to us.

Favorite Sites:  Though the large sites along the entrance driveway looked appealing, they face west, right into the setting sun.  For us, that means the front curtains have to be closed much of the time - I don’t like that!  We preferred the area in the rear, where our site faced north.

Looking down our row Hiking/Walking:  No trails take off from here, but this area is FULL of great hikes.

Comments:  Though there is a lot of boondocking in this area, and BLM campgrounds in nice spots with low prices, if you want hookups, you will be at a commercial park - most of which charge between $35 and $40/night.  This park is a great deal for the (discounted) price!  The only (minor) drawback is its location 5 miles south of downtown Moab, which meant we were frequently driving through busy downtown Moab to reach Arches National Park and the Colorado River.  Just a mile or two from Moab Golf Course, though, so Odel was happy.  We will stay here when we return, thanks to the reasonable cost and mellow management.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


Our View on the patio side. Our Opinion: Neutral.  Good central location for exploring Capitol Reef National Park and the spectacular surrounding area.

Date of Stay: September 28 through October 6, 2010.

Weather During Stay:  “Unseasonably warm” (mid-80’s) for several days, cooling into the 60’s later in our stay, with a couple days of rain (flash flooding in Capitol Reef).  Lows in the 50’s and 40’s.

Site Description:  This small RV park (30+ sites) has both back-ins and large pull throughs, with a separate grassy area for tents.  All RV sites have FHU, but I’m not sure whether both 30 and 50 amps are available in all sites. 

Sites are reasonably level, though the pull throughs slant a bit from back to front (seems to be the norm in all the RV parks in Torrey).  Roads and sites are gravel.  Sites are surrounded by well manicured, green grass and each has one or more trees - including apple trees, with ripe fruit during our stay.  Each site has a picnic table.

Looking towards Site 13, with pull through sites on the right.Bath house and laundry on site, and a couple of cabins are available for rent.  There is an extra charge to use the showers (!), and our neighbors described them as lacking in privacy.

Rate:  This park participates in CampClubUSA, good for one night only.  For our first night, we paid $20.95 (cash only), the CCUSA rate (½ price, plus extra fees for 50 amp and??).  For the remaining nights, we got the 10% Good Sam discount, paying $29.77 per night (including taxes) for our 50 amp FHU site.  Might have been a weekly rate if we had been more organized about our stay. 

Phone/radio/TV:  We are on the edge of the Verizon signal here, but our phones and aircard did work.  We often used the park-provided WiFi (no extra charge) instead of our aircard; sometimes it was blazing fast, sometimes it crawled.  With just a little back-and-forth, we found a shot past a tree so our roof-mounted satellite TV dish worked.  Cable TV is provided, but we preferred using the air antenna, which brought in 20 stations far more clearly than the cable TV signal.  Local NPR on 94.5.

Site 13Elevation/landscape/terrain: Located at 6,800 ft. in a beautiful setting, this park is quite appealing.   Local views are of the green grass and trees of the park and adjacent green pasture.  Distant views are of red rock cliffs and big skies.

Lighting/noise:  Most sites are reasonably dark at night; an unlucky few are near tall night lights.  Even though the park is on the corner of the two main highways in the area (US 24 and US 12), traffic noise at night was not obtrusive for us.

Favorite Sites:  We were in what appeared to us to be the best site in the park, site #13 - which had just been vacated by its seasonal resident when we arrived.  It is a roomy back-in adjacent to the grassy common area with shade trees and beautiful views, facing east.  NICE, except that some of the trees bleed onto things below them.  We’ll see how difficult that is to clean up.   The sites backing up to Hwy 24 would be our last choice.

Grand Wash road Hiking/Walking:  No trails take off from here, but this area is FULL of great hikes.

Comments:  This is one of several RV parks in Torrey.  We like some things about the park (location, trees, small size), but had some minor annoyances (intermittent WiFi problems, poor reception on the cable TV, somewhat brusque owners).  We had no real complaints, but might give one of the other campgrounds in Torrey at try next time we come to the area.  Bring groceries, the nearest “large” grocery store is about 20 miles away.