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Overview of Trapper Springs PG&E Campground
Last Price Paid: $24
Reported by DawnOfTheDez on 8/5/2019
Number of Sites 70
Open Seasonally May - Oct.
Elevation 8,431 ft / 2,569 m
Max Stay 14
Tent Camping Yes
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To ask questions of the owner or manager please contact the campground directly. 916-386-5164
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Reviews of Trapper Springs PG&E Campground 1 person has reviewed this location.
“Clean campsite, but has some negatives...”
Campground is nice and well kept. Tons of tall trees and shade available. It's a stunning area. If you use Google Maps for directions, it will tell you that you have arrived before you reach the actual campsite entrance. Don't fret - just head up the road another 1/4 mile and you'll see the big brown sign.
Beware - if you want to stay more than one night, I would suggest reserving a site. Per the website it was first come first served, however, that's only if there are unreserved spots available. It didn't appear that there was an option to reserve when I looked at the website so I am hoping they update that. If you don't reserve, they say you can stay 1 night, and then you have to check with the camp host every day to make sure no one has reserved it. We were lucky to pick a spot that no one had reserved from Weds through Sunday and weren't forced to find somewhere else to camp after driving 2.5+ hours. The camp host let me pay through Sunday to secure our spot. It didn't seem like that's something they do regularly, though. Play it safe and reserve ahead of time.
Fees are $24/night, $2 per dog per night, $5 per extra car per night (1st car is free). With our 2 dogs, 3 vehicles, and 4 night's stay - we paid about $130. We were able to fit 2 full sized trucks and 1 BMW station wagon in the parking spot at camp. Any more than that, they will have to park either at the lake (which I think is no overnight parking) or on the road somewhere.
There are water faucets all over camp which is nice to have for non-potable water. We didn't figure that out until we walked around the camp. You only need to worry about bringing cooking, drinking, and bathing water. Also note that the campsite does not have showers.
You aren't supposed to bring your own firewood, but it was a challenge to find pieces burn-worthy around the campsite. One of our friends brought a battery powered skill saw which worked out perfect for cutting fallen trees or longer branches. If you head down to the designated fishing spot, you can find some firewood. Grab what you can when you're wandering around.
The weather was amazing. I don't think it hit 70 degrees during the day, and it was in the mid-40s at night. With a sleeping bag under me and 2 blankets on top, I was comfortable and warm, even with the rain-fly off the tent.
Even though the signs say courtesy hours are from 10pm to 8am, no one follows those rules and people were screaming and howling until the wee hours of the morning with no intervention from the camp host. I'm not a negative Nelly - but after setting up camp and wanting to rest, hearing people scream and yell and howl until 3am was kind of annoying.
The pit toilets are gross. Not that I expected a 5 Star Hotel type bathroom, but I've been in more tolerable pit stalls. I saw a maggot climbing out of one of the toilets one evening. Do yourself a favor and bring some Febreeze spray and disinfectant wipes with you when you go. I guess after a night of drinking, actually aiming for the toilet becomes impossible. Maybe it's the elevation (8000+ft)?
TONS of mosquitoes this time of year (July 31 - Aug 4) - bring as many cans of OFF as you can handle. Bring a ton of Citronella candles, OFF Camp Fogging Spray, long sleeves, and pants. If you have a hat with mosquito netting, bring that too. And if you bring your pet(s), make sure you have some kind of mosquito repellent for them too. My poor dogs were getting eaten as much as we were.
We were in campsite 59 which happens to have main trails from the lake to the campground and tons of traffic walking around your stuff. We didn't have issues leaving our stuff out - but I can't say that will be the case for everyone.
Absolutely NO cell service anywhere - even down at Wishon. If you need to make a call you will have to use the $1 per call payphone at the store in Wishon - otherwise, be ready to drive back to Shaver for cell service - which is over an hour drive one way.
Courtwright Lake is amazing. Crystal clear, the weather is amazing. Great for boating or water activities. Didn't seem like the fishing was any good. We fished for 4 days and not only did we not catch anything, the other folks around didn't appear to be reeling anything in either. Maybe just a bad weekend?
All in all it was a pleasant experience. It was just too crowded and loud for that "peaceful mountain camping" experience we were looking for. Next time we will just find some spot off the road or stick to beach camping.
DawnOfTheDez would stay here again
This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of Campendium.com
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- dry camping
- fire ring
- picnic table
- ADA Accessible
- restrooms: vault
- water available
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