28 acres on the Tucannon River with multiple tenting locations across the property - each with their own feel and environment and all within earshot of the river. There are currently two designated campsites you can choose from, The Flat, and The Quarry. Each has a picnic table and spot for a tent and we'll be adding food lockers soon. All sites are walk-in with parking about 50-100 yards away. A third site, The Overlook, is coming soon.
The Flat (1) - On the main garden flat, closest to the river. This campsite is a little larger than the other with room for multiple tents and has a hammock nearby. Out of the three sites, this is the most open and you might see a neighbor across the river or the A-Frame next door, but its rare.
The Quarry (2) - Our most secluded campsite at the end of its own wooded trail surrounded by a maple and choke cherry thicket. It's quite rocky (hence the name), but there's a flattened area large enough for a 4 person tent across a little footbridge . This spot sits on a cliff above the river which is accessible by a short scramble trail and some careful maneuvering. Those brave enough to make the trek will find a private river island with mature cottonwoods and a small beach to take enjoy the river. And by beach we mean rocks. But its cute.
The Overlook (3)- (coming soon) Perched a short hike up the hill, this spot offers some sweet views of the valley and Blue Mountain foothills. The site is also quite private and offers quick access to the Wooten Wildlife area and our hillside above.
The center of the property is a log cabin where we live and are slowly renovating. We open it up on weekends and weeknights for showers and bathroom use. We'll be about, working on projects or clearing brush. Interact with us as much as you want - this is our home and we like to host, but not necessary. Just do your thing.
The cabin flat is a pocket of green with mature cottonwood, ponderosa pines, and sections of choke cherry and elder scrub. Our property borders the Wooten Wildlife area which then leads into the Umatilla National Forest, so that's 1.4 million acres of public lands directly to our South. There are some really great hiking trails and access points to the Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness, or if you prefer to stay close, our property gains 1000' from river to property line. An afternoon trek to the top is challenging but provides a spectacular panoramic view of the Tucannon River valley. Pack some beer and some snacks and hang out for a wicked sunset.
During your stay you'll probably see some wild turkey, quail, and some white tailed or mule deer. The area is known to have cougars (we find scat on our property occasionally) bighorn sheep, black bears, bobcats, and even the occasional moose! There is no shortage of wildlife in the area, and we enjoy when they come to visit us. Be on the lookout at dusk for the nightly bat show!
The property is pretty rural, but not isolated. Depending on where you stake your tent you might see some neighbors, but we can direct you to the right spot if you want to avoid it. We're about 20 miles from the towns of Dayton and Pomeroy. Both have their own charm and offer a grocery store, a couple bars, gas, and supplies. There's an RV park and general store about a mile up the road if you need some quick essentials.
*More about the bathroom situation - We're in the process of building a composting toilet for campers to use 24/7. In the meantime, the cabin bathroom is open for use all day Friday, Saturday, and through checkout Sunday. The rest of the days of the week the cabin bathroom is only available in the evenings from about 5-10pm. If you book on one of those days, there's an automatic 25% discount for those nights.*
We have two cats that roam the property during the day, and they're both called in at night. The cabin is their domain, so no dogs inside. We love dogs and they're welcome on the property so long as they're on-leash and don't bother the cats. A dog that likes to chase, is prone to barking, or doesn't follow commands is not for our place unfortunately. If the cats feel threatened they won't come home at night and our area is very dangerous for a night roaming feline.
- Check in: After 2PM
- Check out: Before 12PM
- Cancellation policy: Flexible
- On arrival: Meet and greet
- Minimum nights: 1 night
- Accepts bookings: 6 months out
The vibe at Tucannon River Camping
If you stayed here and have some insider info for us, let us know!
My family and I have stayed at the McGovern Residence twice now, once with our newborn daughter and again this summer with her as a toddler. It's been really cool to see all the work around the property and renovations on the cabin progress over the last year -- we can't wait to see what fun projects these guys come up with once the heavy lifting of updating the homestead is done. They've already established a number of gardens around the property and cut several of new trails. Without revealing too much, I've heard that future plans include some new structures and a lot of trail work.
The cabin itself and the land close by is a total dreamscape for young kids to explore and learn about nature, bugs and plants. It's also stocked to the gills with hidden details, oddities and shiny things. The cabin is pretty much an eye candy shop, and the surrounding grounds are just asking for a magic wand and some hide and seek. The top of the property is definitely an earned view of the blue mountains. It took us close to an hour to cut our way through tall grass and zig zag up to the ridge line, but the views from up there were well worth it. Maybe next summer our daughter will be big enough to camp up there.
The drive from Seattle is supposed to be just shy of 4.5 hours, but with a baby and summer Gorge traffic, it took us closer to 6 one way. Derrick and Steven know the route blindfolded and gave us better directions than Google Maps both times we've visited. They were very helpful with local pro tips like the last stop for groceries, booze, ice, take-out, etc., and were even more helpful with helping us with alternate directions when traffic got real hairy. The turn for McGovern Rd can be tricky to find because there's no street sign, but these guys have gone out of their way to add their own signage. All good things when your cell service cuts out 30 minutes before your destination!
**While there's no cell or wifi at the property, they do have a landline in case of emergencies.
Steven and Derrick are awesome hosts who provide an amazing opportunity to be at peace in nature, hangout over a campfire, learn about all their cool projects, or simply just be alone to do your own thing, it's entirely up to you! McGovern Residence is a beautiful spot. Choose from camping on The Flat, which is closest to the river, has the most space and comes with a sweet hammock! Or choose the more private and secluded Quarry site, nestled among the luscious greenery. Soon there will be a third site up on the hill to choose from too! On the weekends the bathroom will be available for camper's use as well. They also have a communal fire pit and the sink and kitchen with drinking water is available for use. Overall, I would highly recommend taking some time to visit this little gem hosted by two good people and tucked into a beautiful little valley!
My girl and I found this hidden gem to be more amazing than expected! The architecture of this place is stunning & beautiful. The owners are very nice and welcoming, they might even make a bonfire for you if you ask:) I would recommend this place to anyone who wants a romantic get away.
Steven & Derek offer explorers a quiet, restful and fabulously unique hollow at the door steps to the Blue Mountains. We were warmly greeted when we arrived and enjoyed a thoughtful review of the McGovern Residence history and offerings. We appreciated hearing the babble of the Tucannon River, chatting turkeys and the crack of an inviting community fire. We hope to return to this funky, private and well-appointed property!