Idaho/Oregon/Norcal Camp reccomendations


Desert Rat-Weekend Warrior
Jun 7, 2012

I'm planning a couple of weeks out with the wife of car camping and beer drinking.

It's looking like we'll loop up via Boise, spend 6-10 days in Oregon, 5-7 days in Norcal.

So far, we're looking at something like this, Craters of the Moon on the way up. Would like to hit Crater Lake, Bend, maybe something else around the Deshutes River, then down the coast.

Only thing in Norcal I have planned is Lost Coast. Might backpack a couple nights, might not.

Anyone familiar with the area, and give some good ideas on Camp spots? Primitive is best, but sites are okay, less crowded the better.



Aug 9, 2007
Me and @Smokey did a big road trip up through Oregon many years ago. I have no photos, but here's what we did...

Camped outside of Bend along the Deschutes first night. Don't recall where. Not very memorable.

Went south and then up to Crater Lake. Very cool.

Drove northwest from Crater Lake along the North Umpqua River. HIGHLY recommended! There are a handful of campgrounds in that canyon. They were deserted when we were there so we didn't even look for primitive spots. We fly fished that gorgeous river. I only caught one and it was maybe 4" long, but standing in waist deep, crystal clear water watching massive steelhead and salmon duke it out down by my legs was unforgettable.

We followed the Umpqua down to Florence and followed the coast north. Don't recall exactly where we camped, but we ended up going up through Portland, around Hood and then back down to the Deschutes out near Maupin. Another humbling experience watching real fisherman and us largely getting skunked.

I know that's not very specific, but if you find your way to Crater Lake, I can vouch for the goodness of the North Umpqua route to the coast. Get out and spend some time by that river.

I'm jealous...


Desert Rat-Weekend Warrior
Jun 7, 2012
All great info! If you and Taylor didn't have any luck, I'll certainly be leaving my pole/fishing ambitions at home.

I'll do some searching/maping of those places. Thanks.


Dec 2, 2013
If it were me I would head through Idaho, stop at craters of the moon, then head west along the Columbia River and stop in Hood River for several nights. A few days in the Columbia Gorge is highly recommended. Then I would head south through Portland and hit Silver Falls State Park. Then I would head over to the Coast. Along the coast my favorite beach is Bandon, though it's a ways south.

For the way back from there you have tons of options. Head south through the Redwoods and home through Nevada. My least favorite route, though the Redwoods are nice. Head east and visit Crater Lake.My favorite was when we headed back up towards Florence, then took the route through Eugene and then over the three sisters area. Really awesome area with really unique volcanic geology, I remember it being an incredibly scenic drive. You can then spend a night in Bend or somewhere around there. Visit the pretty epic Sparks lake. the route back through central Oregon going East is really nice for a long leisurely day. You could also stop and see the Painted Hills on your way which is another really cool area.

Super jealous man, a road trip to that area is something I haven't been able to do for a while.

Edit: I forgot you mentioned going to California. In that case going from Bandon on down would make sense. Another favorite is the rouge river from Gold Beach. They run mail boats up the river and you can get a ride up the river, really pretty river and cool area.
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