Come ponder the view at Ponderosa Campground. Family campsites and a mountain stream, all under the protective canopy of Ponderosa, Pine, Oak, Madrone, and Sycamore trees. Campsites come with all the important fixings, and are both tent and RV friendly. Ponderosa Campground is situated by the Nacimiento River, making it perfect to catch a fish or swim like one. Nearby trails offer waterfalls, massive redwood groves, and open meadows. So drop your cell phone in a ditch (or a recycling bin) and get ready to unplug in the Big Sur wildlands.
Campsite area
Bring your own tents, vans and truck campers, trailers, RVs
22 sites
Up to 8 guests per site
Park at listing
No ADA access
Campfires allowed
Toilet available
Pets allowed
Potable water available
Picnic table available


Offered near the campground.


Ride along the beautiful Santa Barbara coast, the central Monterey coast, or anywhere you want in this huge forest. The recomme...Read more


You can fish in the rivers and streams located throughout the forest, and fish in the ocean on the Monterey coast at Sand Dolla...Read more


Up by Big Sur, the Ventana wilderness is a popular hiking destination, with 260 miles of hiking trails, making it a unique exp...Read more

Horseback riding

The Saint Lucia Mountains have been taken by horseback many a’ times, and the time you visit should be no exception. To truly f...Read more


Lake Cachuma in the Santa Barbara region offers some of the best kayak fishing, especially with its location admist the mountai...Read more


You can’t go wrong at Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur, but it’s no match for the Seven Falls in Santa Barbara. This hike might not be...Read more

Wildlife watching

Whether you are an avid birdwatcher (California Condor...check), or just enjoy seeing what the wilderness has to offer, Los Pad...Read more


Natural features you'll find at Ponderosa Campground.

Hot spring
River, stream, or...
Swimming hole
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The vibe at Ponderosa Campground

9 Reviews

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Drop some Ponderosa Campground knowledge on us.
Hipcamper Kianna
Kianna S.
didn't provide a recommendation.
March 29th, 2018

I came here on a solo camping trip in March 2018 for a few days. When I came to Ponderosa campground, it was $25 a night.
The campground itself is beautiful. It's pretty nicely spread out too. It is right by a creek, which was completely flowing when I visited. There were so many birds, it would be a great place for bird watching.
There is no service out here, so be aware of that. It also got below freezing at night when I stayed so make sure you have the right sleeping bag. Each campsite has a picnic table, a firepit (which you don't need a separate campfire permit for)
I will definitely be returning.

Ponderosa CampgroundPonderosa CampgroundPonderosa CampgroundPonderosa Campground
Hipcamper George
George K.
has mixed feelings towards this listing.
January 17th, 2019

Carry bug spray. A lot. Site#20 is shaded. Campfires and Nightsky is awesome!

Hipcamper Jason
Jason C.
didn't provide a recommendation.
June 28th, 2020

The problem isn’t the campsite. It’s the campground host, Michael, who blatantly threatened us with death.. Our campsite was next to his trailer and he helped himself over to our camp essentially anytime One night he was drinking with us around our campfire and at some point he just snapped, aggressively telling everybody to be quiet even though he was louder than all of us. But still, we complied and sat quietly around the campfire without saying a word. This was not good enough apparently. He pointed to my friend and said “you need to shut the fuck up.” I got up and told him that wasn’t cool and he went on a full-throated tirade which included “this is my fucking forest” and “I’ll fucking bury you out here.” Not a safe environment AT ALL

Hipcamper LILA
Lila B.
didn't provide a recommendation.
July 8th, 2020

I camped here at Site #6, near the stream over the 4th of July weekend. It was relatively quiet and while there were some flies and mosquitoes, it was a fairly low-to-normal amount for any summer camping. We kept citronella tikis and repellant and were fine.

Hipcamper Scott
Scott C.
didn't provide a recommendation.
July 21st, 2020

Hi there,

Is there's a shower in the campground?

Hipcamper Tyler H.
doesn't recommend this listing.
May 8th, 2019
Hipcamper Lila B.
recommends this listing.
July 8th, 2020
Hipcamper Kim S.
has mixed feelings towards this listing.
January 7th, 2019
Hipcamper Kianna S.
recommends this listing.
March 29th, 2018
Los Padres National Forest
United States
Phone Number
(805) 968-6640
View on Google Maps
Official Website
View Website
36.005° N, 121.376° W
Unknown price
Tent / RV / Trailer: 22 Sites
(Up to 8 people per site)