Just to get this out of the way: if you like your camping holiday to come with swimming pool, wifi, and other comfort, then this might not be for you. The toilets have no light, for the showers ($3/10 minutes) you have to go to the Lodgepole Village Centre, 5 minutes from the entrance to the camp ground. The village shop is ok, but if you like to cook decent dinners, you should shop in advance, before coming here.
If you care more for quiet nights, proximity to nature, good air, and beautiful scenery, then this is the paradise on earth.
The camp ground is very close to the Giant Sequoias, you can either reach the trails by foot within an hour, or by car or free and frequent shuttle bus within 5-15 minutes. Our tent was at the very back of the camp ground (site 126), wedged between the forest and the river cascading down large stones and creating a beautiful background noise. The sites are spacious and fairly spaced out, and all the neighbours were extremely considerate, so the only sounds one could hear between 10pm and 8am were the river, and the squeaking chipmunks in the morning.
We had originally booked one night here, intending it to be a stepping stone towards Yosemite. But once we got here, we managed to extend our stay to 4 nights, and so glad we did (you have to be extremely fortunate to be able to do that - better reserve well in advance)! One evening, a bear mum with two babies passed through the camp ground, completely ignoring humans, and we watched these beautiful creatures from a distance of 40 feet for about 15 minutes. The next morning, a deer came out of the woods and looked at us curiously for several minutes, while we were having breakfast. During one 3 hour hike amidst the Giant Sequoias, we encountered 2 people and 6 deer, two of them being tiny fawns.
Also worth mentioning: the Crystal Cave is one of the most beautiful caves I have seen, and the guides are very nice and knowledgeable. The nearby Wusachi Lodge offers free wifi, and a spot with one of the best, least light polluted star skies in North America (we were told). You can see the Milky Way, and if you come at the right time of year, lots and lots of shooting stars. And of course there are the Giant Sequoias, which defy any verbal description.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Lodgepole Campground has 214 sites. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Lodgepole Campground Hotel Sequoia And Kings Canyon National Park
- Lodgepole Campground Ca