Tahoe National ForestLeave review
About Tahoe National Forest
Campgrounds in Tahoe
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Ramshorn is an absolutely incredible place to check out if you're into mountain biking! Downieville is 5 and a half miles down the road and has some of the most incredible downhill biking in California (I think!). Yuba Expeditions in Downieville has a great staff and a shuttle to take you up the hill so you can zoom down.
Yuba Pass campground is located very close to Sardine Lake and has 20 campsites among large pine trees. Only a handful of sites would accommodate very large rigs, however, most will take your average trailer or camper.
Amenities & Services include:
Cross Country Skiing
Season: Reservations: July through Sep 6.
Yuba Pass Campground Best Campsites: 6 and 12.
LOCATION – DIRECTIONS
Yuba Pass Campground
Sierraville CA 96126
11 miles south of Sierraville on HWY 49. Turn left at snow park entrance. Campground located approximately mile on right hand side.
We stayed here a couple of weeks ago, love the campground, the river runs along many of the sites, and there is a nice beach and swimming area near site #1. We showed up without reservations hoping that since school started they would have an open space, just barely, we took the last one and that was first thing Friday Morning. It's a popular campground so book your reservations at www.recreation.gov. There are a lot of good sites to pick, we have our favorites, but depending on whether you want a quiet tucked back site, an open site by the river, or share space with fellow campers, the campground has what your looking for. And Pete the campground host was very helpful and welcoming.
There are historical lookout towers that are up for rental; currently it seems the only one available is the Calpine Lookout, but two others are being renovated.
See the history behind the town of Boca in Boca Historic Townsite Interpretive trail. A former railroad construction camp, the town became a mill and brewery, AKA really awesome and worth checking out.
This place definitely takes some effort to get to. Stayed here overnight with my friend and our dogs. 4 wheel drive and high clearance are a must to make it the last 5 miles. Didn't see anyone else camping and only a few cars passed on the "main road" during our entire stay. Quiet and off the grid for sure!
"A bit of noise from the nearby road?" Seriously, Highway 80 is louder than my obnoxious apartment neighbors. Incessant roar all night, punctuated with occasional train racket (with whistle). Not my idea of a peaceful weekend.
That said, the swimming hole and waterfalls are really special and the campground is decent and not crowded, even on Labor Day weekend. Site #9 was private and prettier than a lot of the others, though near the road (not that it matters--it's deafening everywhere).
There are amazing hikes nearby, so if you can stand the noise it's totally worth it. We lit a fire, put on some tunes, opened a bottle of wine, and felt glad our laughter was drowned out by semis. For a night of rest, be sure to bring good earplugs.
Nothing wrong with this campground...certainly beats paying summer rates at Tahoe hotels. It's about 30 minutes to Kings Beach!
The campsite is sandwiched between the road and the river, neither of which are too loud. Fellow campers were respectful of one-another, despite very few distinctions between sites. Flat tentsites, but most people had RVs. Accessible by any car (our MINI did fine).
This is definitely a site geared more towards RVs and people wanting to explore the nearby OHV trails on 4wheelers and dirtbikes. I'm sure it could get rowdy, but our time there was pleasant.
Suggestion: If you drive up the road 1/2 mile and park at the trailhead, you can get a nice spot along the river all to yourself after a 5 minute hike.
We rolled into Salmon Creek Campground at 7:30 PM the Sunday before Memorial Day and grabbed the first open site we saw, grateful to find one at all, though it turned out there were more in the other loop. I'd hoped to stay at one of the lakes further up the Gold Lake Highway but even though it was 82 degrees out, they were snowed in!
The campground has two loops. The left loop (sites 1-18?) is more treed and full of the sound of the rushing creek, which helped mute the noises of kids, dogs etc. (NB it looked like at least one site near the creek was damp at this time of year though.) Sites 19+ are more spread out and have stupendous views of the Sierra Buttes, but are further from the creek. There are bear lockers. Can't wait to return.
Great campground on the edge of cute gold rush town, Sierra City. Situated about 5,000 foot level in the Sierras. Some great sites along the creek with wonderful views. Vault toilets, no showers. Potable water available. Camp host on site. No cell phone coverage at campsite so you'll need to head to the local country store in town for free wifi. If you need a little luxury while there, check out Harrington's resort in town for very nice dinners. Great hike about a 2 mile loop out of the campground with perfect resting spot by huge boulders at half-way point for a snack and rest. Great for younger kids.
This is a beautiful campground but the road is VERY undeveloped. It was possible to drive in my Subaru Forester but very rough and slow. As of July 15 there is still some snow at the campsite. There was a large snow patch on the road that makes it impossible to access the campsites by car. You can still camp here by parking and walking for about 5-10 mins into the campsites. PS you may want to bring your own toilet paper for the vault toilets, it was empty when we arrived.
History of Tahoe National Forest
Transportation routes and development are major factors in the cultural history of the Tahoe National Forest. To some people, the history of the area begins with the wagons of pioneer emigrants, crossing Donner Pass on their way to California. However, human use and occupancy of what is now the Tahoe National Forest goes back many thousands of years. Peoples of the Washoe and Nisenan tribes and their predecessors utilized these lands for food, water, and recreation. Many of the routes we travel today across the Forest have been used for thousands of years.
The first large influx of emigrants from the United States came into the area began in the 1840s, crossing the mountains in covered wagons toward a better life in Mexican California. Donner Pass, the main emigrant route, was named after the ill-fated Donner Party, who wintered in 1846-47 at camps near the present day Truckee.
The Gold Rush of 1849 resulted in a veritable flood of emigrants seeking their fortunes in California, and many of them prospected the lands of the Tahoe. Many of the foothill towns, such as Foresthill, Nevada City, Downieville, Sierra City, and others, date from Gold Rush days, and there are many reminders of those times throughout the Forest. All historic and archaeological sites are protected under federal and state law.
Between 1862 and 1868, the western portion of the first transcontinental railroad was constructed over the Sierra Nevada at Donner Pass by the Central Pacific Railroad, meeting the tracks of the Union Pacific on May 10, 1869, at Promontory Point Utah. The trans-Sierra route remains a remarkable engineering feat, with roadbed built into granite walls, bridges that cross deep gorges, and tracks that pass through a series of tunnels and snow sheds as they cross the mountains. This rail link with the rest of the United States enabled gold and agricultural products from California to be easily shipped east, as well as bringing manufactured goods and even more settlers west, which fueled the rapid growth of the Golden State. Products such as lumber, agricultural goods, automobiles, imports from overseas and products destined for export continue to be shipped over this route today.
The rugged beauty of this route makes it one of the most scenic passenger routes in the United States, and the towns of Truckee and Colfax have Amtrak stops adjacent to the National Forest. Today's Interstate 80 is roughly parallel to the railroad, and travels the same basic route that people have taken for thousands of years.