Hipcamp host Blake R.,
Hosted by
Blake has self-certified that Hipcamp’s COVID-19 Safety Standards have been implemented at this listing. See what’s being done here.

Waterfall and river views from your bed! 5 minute drive to restaurants. Perfect place for road trip stop-over or weekend getaway.

Waterfall Camp features a large cabin tent equipped with a queen sized Coleman camping cot and air mattress, carpet, lanterns, folding chairs and basics to help you feel like you have everything you need for a rustic yet comfortable experie


Waterfall and river views from your bed! 5 minute drive to restaurants. Perfect place for road trip stop-over or weekend getaway.

Waterfall Camp features a large cabin tent equipped with a queen sized Coleman camping cot and air mattress, carpet, lanterns, folding chairs and basics to help you feel like you have everything you need for a rustic yet comfortable experience. We include a camp battery/power station to recharge phones and laptops. We provide pillows, sheets and throw blankets but we recommend bringing your own sleeping bags for added warmth depending on the weather and your personal preference. No shoes in the house please :D

The site has a small bistro table and chairs and we will also provide a propane camp stove and kettle for boiling water, as well as a water cooler jug and dispenser for drinking water.

The camp site is about 150 paces (yards) from the parking area, along a path through a redwood grove, past the garden gate and through a fern meadow.  There is an incline equivalent to 2 flights of stairs going downhill from the parking area to the camp.  We will provide a sturdy wheelbarrow for toting luggage and Blake is happy to assist with loading / unloading and getting you settled. The path is marked with reflectors for night-time but it is not artificially lit.

A stones-throw from camp are easy access points to get your feet wet and play in the river if you so choose!  

In terms of privacy, there are neighbors uphill across the river who have a view of parts of the campsite. The campsite is also partially visible from our house about 100 yards away. We have a senior citizen neighbor who quietly walks her dog along the river path each morning, and occasionally a fly-fisherman passes by while wading the river during fishing season. The path from the car to the campsite is laid out to maximize privacy for campers - you will not have to walk right by our house.


The River Retreat in Brookdale is on a 6 acre property with expansive river frontage and an incredible diversity of mature redwoods, oaks, sycamores, and bay trees.  There are amazing views of a large cascade formed by Alba Creek as it tumbles down the steep rocky hillside before it merges with the San Lorenzo.  When the weather is warm you will want to hop onto one of our tubes or kayaks and float around with a cold drink in your hand.  Guests can also enjoy the garden, orchard, hiking trails, and disc golf baskets on the property.  Unique site for birdwatching - we regularly see a variety of ducks, kingfisher, heron, hawks, and more.

The property is about 6 blocks walk to the Brookdale Lodge and associated businesses.  Under 10 minutes drive to the quaint towns of Ben Lomond and Boulder Creek which each offer basic services and numerous restaurants.  35 minutes to downtown Santa Cruz, the Santa Cruz Boardwalk, and beaches.  50 minutes to San Jose International (SJC).

We get some road noise from Highway 9 which is uphill and across the river valley from our property.  When motorcycles go by it is very noticeable, other times you will notice the bird sounds and white noise of the waterfall more than the road.  The road noise is the downside of being so close to town. Noise more noticeable during rush hours on weekdays.  Currently there is nearby roadwork on weekdays creating excess noise, causing us to not book guests on weekdays.  

Ask Blake for availability of extras like coffee/tea/breakfast service, property tours and nature walks, music lessons, garden workshops, history tour the other structures on the property including our tree house which was once a train station!

Lodging provided
1 site
Up to 6 guests per site
Up to 2 vehicles
2WD Accessible
No wheelchair access
Campfires allowed
Toilet available
No pets
Potable water available
Kitchen available
Showers available
Picnic table available
Wifi available
Bins available
Laundry absent
No hot tub
Have a question? Send Blake a message!
  • Check in: After 2PM
  • Check out: Before 12PM
  • Cancellation policy: Moderate
  • On arrival: Meet and greet
  • Minimum nights: 1 night
  • Accepts bookings: 12 months out
  • Weeknight discount: 20% off


Offered on the Host's property or nearby.

Whitewater paddling
Wildlife watching


Natural features you'll find at Waterfall Camp in California.

River, stream, or...
Swimming hole

Places to see near River Retreat in Brookdale

6 Reviews

This listing has no reviews yet.
If you stayed here and have some insider info for us, let us know!
Hipcamper Nikki

Roll up and camp - no prep needed!

Nikki E.
recommends this listing.
June 28th, 2022

The space was great! Well set up tent, fire pit, table, cooker, and all the bits to make this a nice camping experience. We had a nice time relaxing and playing around in the water. We used the kayaks for a bit but mostly enjoyed being away. This space isn't 100% private (few neighbors and houses) but it's definitely a great spot to unwind and have some peace. Not too much noise from the highway, the waterfall mostly drowned it out in a peaceful way. Blake was super helpful and even brought us morning coffee! Would definitely stay again if we were in the area.

Hipcamper Elyssa
Elyssa P.
recommends this listing.
June 11th, 2022

Blake went above and beyond to make us feel comfortable. The space is even better in person - the perfect way to camp with minimal effort. Would definitely come back

Hipcamper Emma
Emma K.
recommends this listing.
June 6th, 2022

Blake's place was awesome! He was an exceptional host - extremely accommodating and generous. His property was just as advertised and very comfortable. Would absolutely stay there again.

Hipcamper Pulla

An awesome waterfall glamping

Pulla S.
recommends this listing.
June 5th, 2022

Blake is an excellent friendly host. Upon arrival, he welcomed us to the site and walked us around. Blake followed up with us on arrival time to meet and greet. He is very passionate about nature, and he is working hard to preserve and provide the best possible nature experience at this site.

The glamping site has all the comforts needed. The tent is big and maintained well. The river and the waterfall are the main attractions. We loved the sounds of the waterfall while enjoying the warmness of the campfire. A small trail would give a unique experience in exploring nature.
Waterfall Camp is the best glamping site that one must experience.

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Hipcamper Maya

Front row waterfall vibes

Maya C.
recommends this listing.
May 22nd, 2022

Blake (host) and the waterfall campsite were so welcoming! The space itself is dreamt, right along an ambling creek. There were kayaks and tubs for putzing around the water nearby… a fire pit, camping table and chairs, a propane stove… it one of the most thoroughly set up campsites I’ve stayed at through hipcamp. Blake was a very hospitable host :) one small thing of note was that there was a bit of road noise. But my whole crew loved this spot!

Hipcamper Brett

11/10 host and land!

Brett K.
recommends this listing.
May 16th, 2022

Blake is an incredibly gracious host and has put lots of intention into making his guest's stay comfortable. The site itself is lovely - tucked into the forest and sits right next to a river with a waterfall across the site (it is much more impressive in person!). You can walk up and down the river along a bit of path he's cleared out, as well as coast up and down the water in two kayaks he's shared. So fun!

He has a fire pit set up, along with firewood, stove + fuel, some kitchen supplies, and plenty of water for drinking and hand washing. Felt like I overpacked because of how much he provides!

Would definitely recommend if you are passing through the area or just want a few nights away in the forest.

The highway noise, as Blake mentions in the description, is noticeable but quieted down enough at night IMO to not be bothersome.

River Retreat in Brookdale
United States
1 Site