Camping Shots

We are always asking ourselves, do I really need a four wheel drive?  I'll post random camp sites here and talk briefly about what vehicle I think can access these places.  Perhaps it will help someone decide on the 4x4 vs 4x2 issue.
Northern Oregon, middle of the state about 75 miles south of Washington.  Olive Lake.  You could get there in an RV up to about 32' I'd guess.
Wind farm Near Pendleton, Oregon.  Just washboard roads.  32' RV could get here.

Visiting Mother.  Does that count?  Probably not.  Mom drives a Toyota Sienna, enough said.

Middle of nowhere Oregon.  Took a short cut of over a hundred miles of dirt in the middle of the state.  I wouldn't go bigger than a 2wd sprinter van to get to this one.  Small rough dirt roads, no 4x4 though.

Washington state somewhere above the Klickitat river.  Had to use 4low to get to this spot.  Steep and rocky, high ground clearance needed.

 Olive Lake in Oregon 32' RV can get here.

Exploring Northern Oregon.  A 2wd sprinter van could get here.

This is one of the lakes at the beginning of the Rubicon trail.  We came up a back way that required serious ground clearance and at least 3wd.  3wd, you say.  Yep, that's what I said.  I did my whole summer trip with only 3x3.  When I had the gearing changed the guy didn't mount the shift forks properly in the front axle.  It meant the front left wheel never got power and only the right front did when the locker was engaged.

Middle of Nevada between Gabbs and Tonopah.  High clearance vehicle required to camp here and 50 miles of dirt road.  It was peaceful.

Right off the main road in Louisiana.  A 45' diesel pusher with a boat can get in here.  It was a boat ramp/park.  I came in at dusk and left at dawn.

Sedona, Arizona.  Camping on a mountain biking trip.  There are many spots that can be accessed by a high clearance 2wd.  Probably not a sprinter here though.

Near my home town.  Oracle, Arizona.  Easy access for careful 2wd vehicles.  Not a honda accord, but close.

My nephews photography skills showing a spot outside of Mt Reiner National Park.  You can see more of his work here.  This site required high clearance and 4x4.

Same site as the above photo.

I thought of camping at Billy Bob snow park.  Found a better option down the road.  Forest service road access.

On the road between Phoenix and Las Vegas.  Right off the highway.  Accessible by anything up to a 40 foot RV.  This is typical camping for me while traveling.  I usually start looking for a place to pull off well before dark.  If it's a more congested area I might wait for darkness.

The middle of Oregon somewhere.  High clearance and 4wd required although there were several other spots where anyone who was willing to drive 60+ miles of dirt could camp without 4x4.

Galiuro Mountains in Arizona.  A stock 4wd pickup can get in here (if they have the key).

Somewhere along the Baja Penninsula.  4x4 required to get to this one.

La Ventana, Baja, Mexico.  Accessible to all, just need to know where.

Hot Springs North of La Ventana.  Only need 4x4 for the sand on the beach.

Camping South of La Ventana in the cacti.  28' RV accessible.  Width could be an issue.

Along the trinity River in CA.  4x4 required.

In Baja along the main road somewhere near Muleage.  Just off the highway, but 4x4 and low low required.

This one is off of the porcupine rim trail.  4 low required.

When you travel the back roads there are ample opportunities to just pull off the main road and sleep for the night.  Sometimes they offer a magical surprise. 

Isn't this a great spot.  We watched a guy reel in two large bass right next to us.  This is Apache lake in Arizona.  Refreshing to still have a few places where you can drive to the waters edge near populated areas.  High clearance only required for this one.

Elk camp 2016 near Payson, AZ.  2wd only required.  Many beautiful and accessible places to be had near Payson.

 This is one of those scary camping areas.  Near Guerro Negro in Baja, this is a lagoon off of the Pacific ocean.  In the morning the tide was higher than normal and we had to drive through water to get out.  If you had camped here in your 2wd I think you may have been stuck for some time.

Required 4x4 because of the sand wash.

On the ocean near La Ventana, Baja.  2wd will work if it's not wet and you avoid the sand.

We love doing this in Mexico.  Everyone always congregates at the waters edge.  When it gets too crowded we often follow the nearest arroyo or sand wash up.  After you get through the garbage there are usually beautiful secluded camping areas to be found.  It does take 4wd and sometimes high clearance though.

But when the beach isn't crowded it can be very nice.  4x4 required here due to the soft sand.

This is the Pacific Ocean side of Baja near Todos Santos.  We love this area for camping.  To get into this spot I had to use 4x4 and both lockers.  We also had to cross a serious ditch which required significant ground clearance and some suspension flex.  Great spot.

Great spot north of La Paz in Baja on the Sea of Cortez side.  This was our first stop when driving out of Baja 2016.  4x4 required but you could make 2wd work by parking closer to the road.

This spot is between Gonzaga bay and Coco's corner in Baja.  Only 2wd necessary for this one.  You will also need to endure 20 miles of washboard dirt road to get here.

Death Valley, Ca.  Many places to call camp in Death Valley with 2wd including this one.  At least 10 miles of dirt road was all it took to get here.

Death Valley again.  This spot is a little more challenging.  Still 2wd although high clearance would be a good idea.

A really cool spot near Bishop, CA.  This was just one of many dirt roads coming off of highway 395.  There are so many amazing places to camp and see along 395.  Get out there people and explore.  Avoid campgrounds at all costs.  2wd only required.

Another perfect example of how much there is off the beaten path.  This is near Topaz Lake which sits on the border of CA and NV.  We were getting tired, it was getting late so we so we just looked at the map to see what area might be good for the night.  I know this isn't Yosemite or anything but hey it was nice.  Jack rabbits everywhere for the dog to chase, swallows nesting in the banks, ducks drifting by on the "river?".  Not another soul around.  It did end up requiring 4wd, but could have been done in 2wd if careful.

Ok, I think you get the picture.  As you can see a lot of the time we are just stopping for the night in a relatively nice spot.  Some of these places however are truly breathtaking.  I'm still convinced that I need both 4wd and high clearance.  I'm always checking my mileage so every time I go off road I think to myself, there goes my mileage again.  I soon realized that it's very rare that I don't use 4wd low once or twice with every tank of fuel.  I don't like to drive all day and usually explore some to find a suitable camp site so there you go, 4wd low with almost every tank.