Here are some photos and GPS coordinates some of my favorite boondock RV spots I have been fortunate to find since I got my Roadtrek six years ago, and particularly over the past three years that I have been fulltiming around the country. Because I have set my Roadtrek up so that I can camp pretty much any place the police won’t run me off, I have found and stayed overnight in some really beautiful locations. Here are some for your consideration as you plan your own travels. Ignore the cat -she gets into every photo somehow.
Witless Bay, Newfoundland – 47.19213 N, 52.8448 W – This is the easternmost point on the North American landmass. Ireland is 1800 miles across the water – perhaps closer than your home back on the mainland. Those islands are puffin colonies. Newfoundland is a beautiful province, and they don’t even have a word for boondocking – they just call it camping. Friendliest people you ever met.
Goosenecks State Park, Utah – 37.17073 N, 109.92380 W – the San Juan River cut entrenched meanders into the Colorado Plateau here. It’s 1000 feet down to the river. The “state park” consists of a parking lot, water fountain, plaque, and bathroom. Just drive along the canyon rim (not too close, and watch for cracks in the ground – those are bad luck) and pick a spot. There’s never anyone here.
Heceta Head, Oregon – 44.12601 N, 124.1262 W – a pullout across the cove from a posh lighthouse B&B. You have to make your own breakfast on our side of the cove, but it’s $250 a night cheaper. It’s at the top of a 400 foot cliff and waves pound its base all night long. The ocean here is breathtakingly beautiful. Oregon state law says you can park for 12 hours at any pullout not otherwise posted. We parked.
BLM Land South of Joshua Tree NP, California – 33.6701 N, 115.806 W – out in the Mojave Desert and away from the turistas in the park. You can sneak in for water and dumpsite access, though. Groceries are 15 miles away in Indio. Just hang out in the desert, enjoy the flora and fauna, and work on your tan. Keep your clothes on if there are any nearby campers, otherwise no rules.
Vista Point at Golden Gate Bridge, CA – 37.8324 N, 122.4795 W – I have stretched the 8 hour limit on parking in CA rest stops a bit here once or twice, but never been hassled. Watch huge cargo ships, listen to foghorns, give wedding parties dropping by for a great photo background good wishes, cook dinner, look across San Francisco Bay at the Giardelli factory. Nice break from all the rural isolation.
Government Springs, Big Bend NP, Texas – 29.3705, -103.295 – technically not boondocking, because it’s dispersed camping ($5 for 14 days), but it’s assigned spots – nobody can camp near you. Pick a campsite with clear horizons devoid of all human activity. Javelinas, the Milky Way, and no other company for two weeks. Paradise. There’s a bear box to get into if you have unwelcome visitors 😉
Pistol River, Oregon – 42.2792 N, 124.4052 W – this is more of a five-mile stretch than a spot – Oregon law says you can park for 12 hours, so we had day spots and night spots, and stayed for two weeks. Water, groceries and a dumpsite in Gold Beach right up the road. Sea otters, deer, and giant seastacks of chert scraped off the Pacific Plate as it dove under the North American Plate. Beautiful sunsets.
Lupine Meadows, Mount Hood NF, Oregon – 45.3221 N, 121.6356 W – dispersed camping down a logging spur in a field of lupines, with Mount Hood peeking through the trees and mountain streams running nearby. Deer, gray jays, owls big enough to scare Fiona. This is a traditional native American berry picking area, so hands off the huckleberries, palefaces. Fourteen days can go by in a hurry out here.
Gamble Rogers State Recreational Area, Florida – 29.4374 N, 81.1062 W – this is DEFINITELY not a boondocking site – I was paying an exorbitant $15.54 a night with my FL senior discount, but hey, it’s Christmas in Florida so I had to cheat a bit. Oceanside camping just north of Daytona – with hookups. Rapturous Yankees walking around in a daze. Sea turtles, shrimp boats, dolphins, … and tourists. I forgot the tourists.
Mineral Creek, San Juan NF near Silverton, CO – 37.81670 N, 107.72759 W – The tenth spot is dispersed camping along a creek 9600 feet up in the Colorado Rockies. Beautiful Engelmann spruce and other alpine trees, cool clear water, brilliant sunshine, and spectacular views of Kendall Mountain, elevation over 13,000 feet. It’s so high we got snowed on for midsummer’s eve, but 70ish during the day. Hummingbirds were our only visitors.
Want more? Go hit these ten and come back and then we’ll talk. Chances are you won’t be back for a long time.
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