Tent camping in Southern California is a fun, affordable way to spend time with the whole family. A variety of areas are located throughout Southern California which are ideal for camping. Some families even enjoy Southern California beach camping.
Tent Camping in Southern California Locations
Tent camping in this region is ideal. The weather is mild to hot. Much of the region of the Sierra Nevada is filled with pine woods and running streams. Some more experienced campers may wish to move closer to the desert regions of Death Valley. Throughout most of the area there are state parks and campgrounds perfect for tent camping.
Andrew Molera State Park Campground: Located just one mile away from the ocean, Andrew Molera State Park Campground is an ideal location for tent camping. Most of the region is a grassy meadow but it does have vaulted toilets and piped in water. A number of campsites are located here to be used, though there is a three day limit.
Big Pine and Independence Area Campgrounds: Those who wish to take in the scenery of towering sequoia groves may wish to go tent camping in Big Pine and Independent Area Campgrounds, located just east of Kings Canyon National Park. Here, you will find plenty of terrain to hike and enjoy horseback riding in this area as well.
Kern County Campgrounds: Those visiting Kern County may wish to stay at any of the location’s best tent camping areas including Kern River County ark, Mount Pinos, Campo Alto, or Valle Vista. Many of these facilities offer locations for water sports, fishing and hiking.
William Heise County Park Campground: Those in Los Angeles or San Diego are only a few minutes to some of the best campgrounds located in this region. William Heise Couty Park Campground offers rolling meadows and forested landscapes. In this region, the Forty Niners found the first gold in the state of California.
Cleveland National Forest: The Cleveland National Forest is a large park with more than 567,000 acres located in San Diego County. This is a densely forested region, though campgrounds are located throughout it. Some of the campgrounds here include Los Caballos, Horse Heaven, Fry Creek, Dripping Springs and El Prado.
Any of these Southern California parks can be a good place to tent camp. Most areas do not require license or registration, but you should check with the local parks and recreations department prior to visiting.
Things to Do on Southern California Tent Camping Trips
Tent camping in Southern California offers many outdoor activities. Most parks offer hiking trails throughout them. Many come to hike through this guarded, untouched wilderness. For those who wish to hike, visit the California State Parks website to learn more about particular parks and regions ideal for hiking.
Some areas are protected as wildlife preserves and sanctuaries. For example, in Cleveland National Forest, there are four designated areas as wildlife sanctuaries and while visitors may walk through them, no vehicles or bicycles may be taken through them. Be respectful of posted signs detailing what is allowed.
Backpacking, fishing, bird watching, and water sports may be found in some of these regions as well. Keep in mind that fishing may require a license from the state parks division. There may be a limit on how many fish you can remove from the streams or lakes. There may also be restrictions on which areas may be fished in.
Other activities to do while tent camping may include biking, boating or canoeing in rivers, lakes and streams and climbing. Some areas do allow horseback riding. Hunting is allowed in a few designated areas depending on the time of year. Swimming is possible in most areas.
There are a number of great parks located throughout Southern California and many of them offer tent camping, either through designated campsites or in the open wilderness. It is important to locate potential areas ahead of time and ensure that all rules and regulations are followed. To view all Southern California state parks, visit the National Park Service website.