This Week's Picks
Lots more great lists!
Top 5s & 10s From
1) Prettiest drive-to camps on lakes -
Mary Smith, Lewiston Lake: One of the prettiest spots you'll ever see, set on the southwest shore of Lewiston Lake, close to the water, with nearby hiking, good fishing and great views.
Emerald Bay State Park, Lake Tahoe: This is the prettiest spot on the prettiest lake, with excellent lakeside hikes; the only way this can be improved is by boat (with boat-in sites available).
June Lake, Inyo National Forest: This camp is set near the northeast shore of June Lake, 7,600 foot elevation, at the foot of the East Sierra, with good hiking, fishing and horseback riding nearby.
2) Best drive-to camps on streams -
Agnew Meadows, Inyo National Forest: Agnew Meadows is adjacent to the headwaters of the San Joaquin River, a pristine trout stream that extends south into the Ansel Adams Wilderness for excellent hiking, flyfishing and sight-seeing.
Ah-Di-Na Camp, Shasta-Trinity National Forest: Ah-Di-Na is best known as the camp for flyfishers working the historic section of the McCloud River operated by the Nature Conservancy.
Chapman Creek, Tahoe National Forest: This camp is set near where little Chapman Creek pours into the Yuba River, with fishing and swimming, and an ambitious tromp available that is routed up along the stream, then branches off up to Haskell Peak (8,107 feet).
3) Best walk-in camps -
Union Reservoir, Stanislaus National Forest: This is a small, gorgeous lake is set in Sierra granite, 6,850 feet elevation, with small campsites set near the lake, an easy walk to the sites, with a lake ideal for a canoe or raft.
Angel Island State Park: It takes a two-mile walk, backpack-style, to reach the campsites, but once the last ferry boat leaves for the day, you practically have the island all to yourself.
Panther Meadows, Shasta-Trinity National Forest: A two-minute walk on the south flank of Mount Shasta, 7,400 feet, takes you to this camp along a pristine meadow, with nearby hikes available to Gray Butte for eye-popping, long-distance views.
4) Best easy wilderness backpack camps -
Deadfall Lakes, Shasta-Trinity National Forest: An easy three-mile walk from the Parks Creek Trailhead will deliver you to beautiful Deadfall Lake, set at 7,300 foot, at the foot of the summit trail to Mount Eddy (9,025 feet).
Glen Aulin High Sierra Camp, Yosemite National Park: Starting from Tuolumne Meadows, it's an easy five-mile, mostly-level walk along the Tuolumne River to pretty Glen Aulin -- with waterfall galore nearby.
Winnemucca Lake, Eldorado National Forest: Winnemucca Lake is set just two miles by trail from Carson Pass, with nearby Round Top Lake and Fourth of July Lake providing easy side trips. (530) 644-6048.
5) Best camps for hiking -
Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite National Park: Take your pick: Hike to the south up Lyell Fork, a beautiful trout stream, or tromp north along the Tuolumne River to Tuolumne Falls. Both routes are near flat.
Big Basin Redwoods State Park, Santa Cruz Mountains: This is the Bay Area's best hiking park, crowned by the all-day trip to Berry Creek Falls, Silver Falls and Golden Falls.
Lakes Basin, Plumas National Forest: Set at 6,400 below Mount Elwell, there are some 15 lakes within reach of a day's hike; known as the Gold Lakes Basin.
6) Best camps on coast -
Surfwood Walk-In, MacKerricher State Park: A three-minute walk provides access to beautiful sites set in lush greenery and forest, with trailheads nearby for great coastal walks and bike trips.
Wildcat Hike-in, Point Reyes National Seashore: This is best of the camps on the Coast Trail, providing access to miles of untouched beach as well as beautiful Alamere Falls and miles of interior wildlands. It takes a 5.1-mile hike from the Palomarin Trailhead to get here.
Environmental Cabins, Mt. Tamalpais State Park: These primitive cabins are set on a coastal overlook at Rocky Point on the Marin Coast, adjacent to private beaches, and near a trailhead (across Highway 1) for the climb up beautiful Steep Ravine.
TOP TEN TRIPS INTO THE REDWOODS IN THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
TOP TEN CAVE EXPLORATIONS
TOP FIVE AREAS TO MOUNTAIN BIKE IN THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
TOP TEN SCENIC BACKROADS IN THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
TOP FIVE PLACES TO BEACH CAMP IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
TOP TEN PLACES TO VIEW WILDLIFE IN THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
TOP TEN EASY BACKPACK TRIPS
TOP 7 LAKES IN THE GOLD LAKES BASIN
TOP 3 PEAKS TO CLIMB IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
BEST CABINS FOR FISHING
BEST CABINS FOR HIKING
BEST FAMILY DESTINATIONS
BEST SCENIC DESTINATIONS
BEST BOAT-IN CAMPING
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