Saturday, February 13, 2010

Napa Valley Campgrounds, California

The coastal region of California is dark and gloomy for boondockers. There is little public land and on that land campers are generally herded in to formal campgrounds. Take heart, as we move north in a month or so we will highlight places far from campgrounds.
Getting around the Napa Valley can be an exercise is traffic frustation. If you come in summer this will be true and it might even happen some sunny weekends in the spring.
However, there is an alternative to Highway 29 which runs up the and that is the Silvarado Trail which runs on the east side of the valley. Break out your map and find it. It will save you time if you need to avoid traffic.

As noted in earlier posts, the food rather than the wine is the attraction in the Napa Valley for many people. We ate at Angele in Napa City and had a great bouilabase. There is a walking trail next to the Napa River to help walk off those calories. The Mustard Cafe is also a good place to eat just off Highway 29. Find your own favorite spot by checking the web and be sure to post here on the comment section so others can enjoy your find.
If you are into the wine experience you will want to camp in the valley so you can bicycle to and from your campsite. You still can get cited for riding a bicycle under the influence so be careful!
If you are only going to make a short stop in the Napa Valley you can find campgrounds just east and west at Lake Berryessa and Sonoma County. From these areas it is just a short drive to the valley on winding roads. Lake Berryessa is a Bureau of Reclamation lake, but unfortunately all campgrounds appear to be private on the lake.

There is a campground in a residential neighborhood in Calistoga run by the Napa County Fairgrounds. Here is a couple of pictures from the campground. Water and Electric for $33/night plus an additional $2 for a dog. You can walk into town from this campground.

Down lower in the Valley is a campground just opening to the general public. This is the Veterans Home Campground  run by the state of California. The campground is being resurfaced and is open to the general public. Water, electric, and I believe sewer hookups are $20/night.

Please call the following number before arriving as conditions are subject to change through this spring and summer: 707 944 4600.

It is an interesting site to drive in and visit. The Napa County museum is also located on the grounds as well as a golf course.

This finishes the postings about the Napa Valley. We are headed further south. The Santa Cruz-Montery Area on the Central Coast of California.

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