Wednesday, May 26, 2010

How To Find Boondock Locations--Part 2

 Boondock Information: How to Find Boondock Locations--Part 2

Well technically, the picture above is a boondock location.  But this is not what I generally look for in a boondock location, but we did have a grand time.  I want a little more privacy and scenery in our camping locations.

Now, this is more like it!

When looking for boondock locations, the first thing I recommend is to make a list of what you want to do at your boondock location. There are lots of reasons to boondock, but they are more fun and interesting when the location matches your interests.

In our case, we wanted to go camping for a week.  I want trails to hike and bicycle, lakes for fishing, and a dark sky for astronomy.  Susie wants a place to go out for dinner.  Alex wants to go fishing, ride her bicycle and find kids.

We decided on visiting the Walla-Whitman National Forest in eastern Oregon.  The first thing I did was mark all the paved and high standard gravel roads on the forest map using a yellow highlighter.  If a road is paved or high standard gravel you can access it easily in most RV's.  Also, driving on a paved road is much better than miles and miles of washboard dirt road.  Been there, done more!  I can do it if need be, but would rather avoid it, if possible.

If you have a national forest map go ahead and look at the legend and highlight the suitable roads. I am sure you will find that there are more of them than you realize.  Now, this is where landforms become important.  By looking at landforms you can see if there will be boondocking locations when you get there!! 

While looking at the Walla-Whitman map, two areas stood out.  The first was Anthony Lakes area west of Haines, Oregon.  The second area was the Fish Lake area, about ten miles north of Pine, Oregon.   We picked Anthony Lakes area.  It had lakes and enough trails so we could hike or bicycle to fish.  It was high elevation for astronomy.  There was an outstanding steak house in Haines for that all important dinner.  There were three campgrounds in the area for Alex to find other kids.    Boondocking landforms were limited to a couple of ridges at Anthony Lakes.   Fish Lake looked better for boondocking, but probably had less kids.

We liked this area so much we came back four times in the next two years.  Alex always found new friends at the campgrounds.  A couple of times we stayed in the small three unit campground and had it all to ourselves.  Wait until the 4th of July to access Anthony Lakes, as it is high elevation.

But Fish Lake is still on our list.  I came close to the area in 2007 while working on a forest fire in the area.  Nice area.  Now that we do not have to find playmates we will be heading in that direction next time.

Here is the link to the Haines Steak House.  It was good years ago, hopefully, just as good today.  It was well worth the trip down the mountain.  Haines, Oregon Steak House

The Walla-Whitman National Forest is a lightly used areas with lots of wonderful locations to explore.  Many paved roads for bicycle riding, lots of history scattered throughout the forest, great trails for hiking, and even a short drive to a steak house!!  Next time you drive I-84 tempted to take one of those exits.


Anonymous said...

That's awesome, keep on truckin...

dogsivu said...