Locations - Mammoth Lakes, California
Free RV camping is easy to find
just a few miles north of Mammoth
Lakes, California. With dramatic views of the eastern Sierra
Nevada mountains from many campsites, this area is one of our
favorite dispersed camping (boondocking)
There are 5 camping location
maps on this page.
RV camping in
the Mammoth Lakes
area is great. Mammoth, it's nickname, is located on the
eastern side of the Sierra Nevada mountains of California 3 miles west
of US highway 395 on state highway 203. Mammoth Lakes is a
full service community with fuel, food, restaurants, private
RV park, water, RV dump, and trash facilities. There is a US
Forest Service information center, and there are numerous developed US
Forest Service campgrounds in the area.
RV Camping At Developed Campgrounds
National Forest has 3 developed campgrounds about 8 miles from Mammoth
Lakes with easy access to US 395. The Glass
Creek campground offers dry camping for a maximum of 42 days.
This campground is suitable for any size RV, and all sites
are first come, first serve. No designated sites.
Springs campground offer at least 14 days of dry camping.
These campgrounds are not suitable for large RV's, and length
of stay may be posted longer.
RV Dispersed Camping (Boondocking) Locations
To get to the
free RV camping
location, from the junction with California highway 203, go north on US
395 4.1 miles to Smokey Bear Flats. There is a wide parking
area here with a wooden Smokey Bear waving at you. At the
north end of Smokey Bear Flats, turn right onto a wide well maintained
gavel road. This is Forest Road FR 3S04. Cross
under the power lines and as the road turns north into the forest, a
large open RV camping site is on your left just inside the tree line.
If you are unlucky enough to find someone in this campsite, a
right turn will take you into a large maintenance area with piles of
gravel, but large enough for even the largest vehicle to get turned
around. We've seen people camped in this area.
This is an
easy campsite to
find. The campsite is close enough to US 395 that you can
hear and see it, but the noise is negligible as you are almost 1/2 mile
away, and you are well obscured from sight from the highway.
There are Ponderosa and Lodgepole pines surrounding the
campsite, but the view across Smokey Bear Flats to the Sierra Nevada
mountains is spectacular and makes this free RV camping location well
worth investigating. Not recommended for large RV's.
National Forest has been heavily logged for over 100 years,
and there are numerous back roads suitable for RV camping exploration.
If you are adventurous, some really great dispersed camping
sites are available in this area.
Lands near Mammoth Lakes
map shows general
areas of public lands in the Mammoth Lakes area. These areas are often
open to dispersed camping, as well as developed facilities. Green
shaded areas are managed by the USDA Forest Service, the purple shaded
areas are Bureau of Land Management (BLM). California
Resources has information and links to all public
lands websites for official information.
To find great
RV camping sites,
we feel you need a good map. We recommend DeLorme
Topo 6.0 as a great recreational topographic map program.
With almost unlimited ability to zoom in and out, add notes
and links to Internet sites, 3D, route planning, distance,
interface to Internet, add roads, find by address and much more.
We love this software to help plan camping trips so we know
what geography to expect, and to help us find roads suitable to explore
for dispersed campsites.
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