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“Spots too small” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Lake Skinner State Park

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Lake Skinner State Park
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Rancho California Road, Temecula, CA   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Temecula
Menifee, California
16 reviews 16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Spots too small”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2012

We stayed here a couple of years ago and it was awful. Decided to give it another try and they have improved in many areas. The staff was much nicer this time around and the bug problem we experienced last time was gone. They have added a nice amphitheater, newer bathroom facilities, newer playgrounds and a splash park which is great for the kids (although it only runs April-October). My husband fished one day while we were here and all he caught was a sunburn! As far as the campspot, they are way too close together. The layout of the site was also strange. Our firepit was right up against our neighbors trailer. And if you had neighbors like we did, you'll be getting eyeballed all night through the blinds. This is camping right? Isn't the purpose to be outdoors? Anyway, the best spots are on the ends of the rows but of course are hard to come by unless you reserve way in advance.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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30 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2012

Unsure if it was the season, weather and or location, but this camping trip went much better.

Last time it was very loud at night and a lot more drinking went on, this time everything seems to have quieted down and overall it was peaceful after dark, unlike our last camping trip.

Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Temecula, California, United States
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2012 via mobile

The best time to go is winter- less people, less noise. I've never had a problem with staff but I've never run into anyone but front gate. I do think 6 bucks on the weekend for day use is high. The waterpark is fun in summer but it gets way too crowded on the weekend. In winter, its closed. Fishing is not good. It does get hot in summer. Balloons aglow in the summer is fun- its around the fourth of july. By far the best thing to do is have a picnic and walk around the lake in the dead of winter!

  • Stayed January 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Riverside, California
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2011

My family and I come to Lake Skinner a few times a year to relax and enjoy the park. This past August we were camping next to some people who very rude and drinking. They were playing some kind of toss game right in front of the camp site next to them and it wasnt even their site. They were drinking during the day and then late at night and being loud. They would be quiet when the rangers were close by and then would be loud and laugh about it. Two of the campers next to us had to call and complain because these campers were threatening to kick people's a$$ if they called the rangers on them. The rangers were called the next day and even then were treated badly by these campers yelling and cussing at the one ranger who showed up. I do not understand why these kind of people are allowed to stay and camp in the park. They should have been kicked out. It looks like the park is only interested in money and not the safety and enjoyment of the campers. I love to go camping but this was not a very good weekend and it sounds like the review from menifee is the people that other campers were complaining about. I will go back, but I will stay next to a camp host in the future.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2011

First off, we are avid campers. We have camped all over California and Arizona. We decided to camp at Skinner because it was close to home and we wanted to form our own opinion. We have children ages 8 & 10 and camp with 5 other groups. The only positive thing about Skinner is the park is clean. The biggest complaint I have which left an awful taste in my mouth was the RUDE staff! From the moment we arrived till the time we left, the camp host, the gate attendants and the Ranger were unbelievably rude. They definitely need to teach a class on customer service and how to approach people.
It started when we decided to drop our children off a day early with their grandparents before we came in. We showed up at 9pm to drop them off and the front gate charged us $3 just to come in to drop them off! I had no cash and they still swiped my credit card. Ridiculous I thought, but those are their rules so I kept my mouth shut. Next, the rangers came by our camp spot multiple times and were extremely rude every time. I mean, extremely rude. I was dumbfounded at the way they approached us. They wouldn't let you talk and treated us like we were children. Also, there is nothing to do in the summer time there. It was extremely hot and all they have is a little baby water splash area that is packed with outside guests because they only charge $5 a car load. Totally trashy people. I also thought it was ridiculous that they lock you in after 10pm. You cannot exit the park from 10pm to 6am. This is a first because usually a park will not allow entry after a certain hour, but will still allow you to exit. I asked the staff, "what if I have an emergency?" Their response was to call 911. I said by the time I wait for the ambulance to come all the way out to Skinner then drive all the way into the park, it could be a matter of life and death. They said we could wake up a camp host and they would unlock the gate. I didn't like the fact that I could get out with my son's asthma. My parents as well as ourselves ended up leaving a day early because we felt uncomfortable there. All of our friends that were camping had the same experience and said they will never come back. I'm filing a complaint on their Ranger as well. Do yourself a favor and stay somewhere else!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Whittier, California
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2010

I booked a group spot for New Years Eve about 1.5 months ago for 12 spaces with full hookups and was charged the full amount for 3 nights ($690). Keep in mind this is for New Years and I have people committed to the celebration, time off work, and my money is on the line due to cancellation policies. So two days ago, I get a call from Lake Skinner saying sorry we had a computer issue and your spaces were booked long before your reservation so you need to be moved. I get moved to spaces with water only and they are doing me a favor? SAY WHAT? I tell them no way and ask them to do me a solid either now or in the future. Keep in mind, I have to call the other people in my group and say "Sorry, you are screwed. Hope you find something else to do last minute for New Years." ARE YOU KIDDING? So, I get a call later from Skinner saying, "As a courtesy, we will book your spot next year for New Years." Do I get a discount NOPE. I just get a courtesy booking and my party is screwed for NEW YEARS. Thanks a lot. Long story short, reservations were made in advance and confirmed for a major weekend, money was spent by parties involved, time was taken off from work or other plans, and families with children were looking forward to another camping trip. UNBELIEVABLE. Never been to Lake Skinner campground and never will after this experience. The rest of the group has visited before and will never return per their frustration. You have to think that maybe they think I screwed this up, but I told them to call Bridgett at Lake Skinner and give them their opinion. I hope they do. In the end, I found another spot last minute and they were super accomodating with my group. I havent been there yet but they have far exceeded Lake Skinner with customer service and my group is looking forward to a new place to visit as a replacement to Lake Skinner. Maybe I am wrong, but if I cancel a reservation for a group two weeks prior to arrival, don't I get charged a cancellation fee? But, when they cancel on me it's not a big deal and they don't owe me anything? PRICELESS!!!! By the way, Vail Lake Resort is a very nice place, but they need to stop charging prices for the Ritz. Nice, but not that nice. $110 for a night of camping for New Years? Look for the hidden places that make camping what is used to be with your family. Good Luck.

  • Stayed December 2010
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Altadena, California, USA
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2010

Just returned ffrom a 3-day stay at Lake Skinner. There were six adults and two young children in our group. We stayed in Camp ground 'C'. It has been about 28 years since I was last at Lake Skinner. At that time the trees were no taller than 6-7 feet tall and I only remember the place being very hot and having little shade. Fast forward 28 years later and a lot has changed. The trees are grown though many of the perimeter camp sites seem to have taller and more filled out trees than the interior sites in each camping area. There are several huge grassy areas perfetct for frisbee, kite flying, and a relatively new water park. There is also a walking/running path around the camp sites that does not appear to be completed. There are also two large play areas with slides for the kids. That much has changed. What has not changed are the following: It is HOT here. granted, we had great breezes from11am to 6pm for two days but our last day provided little or no breeze and the temp was 104, in the shade.That memory is burned in my mind from my stay 30 years ago!! The hills and area immediately surrounding the campsite are off limits because it is a wildlife protection area. Ther is one horse/hiking trail at the entrance of the park which is about 3 miles long and open from 8am to 4pm. We didn't hike this because it was over 100 degrees all three days of our stay. As this lake is a domestic water supply there is no human or animal contact allowed with the water, only fishing, kayaking, canoeing are allowed.. Lastly, the pool that I remembered using as a young boy has been removed and replaced with a small but nice waterpark called splash zone. However, splashzone was closed this incredibly hot weekend because of a few construction issues. This would be a good place for a weekend picnic if the water park was working.
Anyway, the camp sites are small but clean. bathrooms are very clean and the showers worked well. The campers surrounding us were generally quite and respectfull but many of them did make a good deal of noise until 11:30 or 12:00am. As a tent camper, I really didn't sleep all that well because of the air conditioner noise at night but most people were asleep or inside their RV's after 11:00am in our area.
Overall, there wasn't much to do at this camp site since the surrounding areas are off-limits, there is really no water sports to speak of in the lake except fishing. Kids will like the large grassy areas and large play areas with slides. Would have had a much better time if the water park was operating. and possibly if that particular weeked wasn't the hottest of the entire 2010 summer!.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lake Skinner State Park

Address: Rancho California Road, Temecula, CA
Location: United States > California > Temecula
Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Temecula
Number of rooms: 10
Also Known As:
Lake Skinner State Park Hotel Temecula
Lake Skinner State Park Temecula

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