Primitive Campgrounds

Whiskeytown National Recreation Area

Whiskeytown Lake

Peltier Bridge Campground, Whiskeytown Lake, CA

Peltier Bridge Campground

Whiskeytown National
Recreation Area
Attractions and Activities

The Primitive Campground are located at various remote spots away from Whiskeytown Lake.

  • Whiskeytown Lake is popular destination for fishing, swimming, boating, waterskiing, and scuba diving.
  • Wildlife viewing, mountain biking, hiking and horseback riding are favorite activities along the surrounding trails.
  • Tour the historic Tower House Historic District, pan for gold, and view the 1852 Camden House.
  • Hike to waterfalls and mountain tops with great vistas. Take the Whiskeytown Waterfall Challenge and hike to all 4 waterfalls.
  • Head to the Visitor Center for interpretive exhibits and a park overview.
  • Join ranger-led interpretive programs offered during the summer.
  • Children can participate in a variety of exciting Junior Ranger Programs, such as the Kayak Program and Junior Firefighter.
  • Join a ranger-led kayak tour.

Key Primitive Campground Regulations

  1. Entrance Passes to the Recreation Area are required in addition to camping fees. ($10 for 7 days)
  2. Avoid problems with bears by securing all food and similar items in bear-proof lockers.
  3. Generators are not permitted in tent-only campgrounds such as Peltier Bridge, Sheep Camp, and Crystal Creek.
  4. Generators may only be operated from 6 AM to 10 PM in campgrounds approved for RVs.
  5. Jet Skis are not allowed on the lake.
  6. Dogs must be on leash and are not permitted on beaches.

Primitive Campgrounds

Six primitive campgrounds with a total of 20 campsites are located at least one mile from Whiskeytown Lake in the Whiskeytown National Recreation Area. Primitive campgrounds have no potable water or flush toilets. They do have vault toilets and other campground amenities.

Visitors to the campgrounds enjoy hiking and horseback riding to nearby waterfalls and through old-growth forests. A short drive leads campers to beaches at Oak Bottom, Brandy Creek and East Beach. Whiskeytown Lake is popular for fishing, boating, waterskiing, sailing, kayaking, and canoeing.

  • Peltier Bridge: Tents only - Off Paige Bar Road near the dam, beside a creek
  • Horse Camp: RVs, trailers or tents, lots of parking space. May have potable water. For reservations call (530) 242-3412. Fee based on group size. No corrals available. Off Paige Bar Road.
  • Brandy Creek: RVs, trailers or tents - short drive to Brandy Creek Beach
  • Sheep Camp: Tents only - 3-mile drive to Brandy Creek Beach
  • Crystal Creek: Tents only, by Crystal Creek Falls
  • Coggins Park: RVs, trailers or tents - most remote campground, about 20 miles from the lake

Primitive Campground Basics
Primitive Campground Locations: Just beyond Brandy Creek Maria off Kennedy Memorial Dr., off Hwy. 299 at Whiskeytown Lake, 15 miles west of I-5 in Redding
Elevation: 1,000 - 3,900 feet
Nearby Cities: 14 - 20 miles from Redding
Number of Sites: 20
Open - Closed: most open year-round, but some sites may be closed in winter
Max. People per Site: 6 (including children) - 2 tents maximum
Vehicles per Site: 2
Pets: On leash, always attended
Whiskeytown Visitor Center: (530) 246-1225

No Reservations The sites are available only on a first-come-first-served basis. Permits available at the Visitor Center (no advanced reservations accepted).
Camping Limit: 14 days from May 15 to September 15 and 30 days total for the calendar year.
Maximum RV/trailer length 25 feet total length of vehicles
Wheelchair accessible Sites: None designated
Camping Fees: $15 per night per site
does not include daily entrance fee
Check-in, check-out: Noon, Noon

Primitive Campground Amenities
Campsites: Picnic table, bear-proof storage locker, a fire pit with a swing-arm BBQ grill, and a pole for hanging your lantern.
Campground: Vault toilets, no potable water
Showers: Outdoor showers at Brandy Creek Campground
Dump station: Nearby
Attractions near Primitive Campgrounds: Visit Brandy Creek Falls and Crystal Creek Falls. Horseback ride out the Salt Gulch Loop Trail. From Peltier Bridge hike up the Logging Camp trail. Swim at Brandy Creek Beach when lifeguards are on duty. Take advantage of the marina and launch ramp. Hike the Monarch Mountain Trail and the Brandy Creek Trail.

Campgrounds without Potable Water

The lack of drinking water at a campground can be an inconvenience, especially for those without an RV or travel trailer. The obvious solution is to bring along a 5 or 7 gallon water canister to use for drinking water, dish washing, and even teeth brushing.

Another solution to consider is to use a quality water filter to filter water from a nearby stream or lake, a process backpackers use all the time. While hand pump filters work well, they can become tiresome. A gravity flow filter is really the best solution for campground use. Simply fill the reservoir with water, hang it from a tree limb, and enjoy clean water filling your water jug at a rate of almost ½ gallon a minute.

Whiskeytown Horse Campground, Whiskeytown Lake, CA

Whiskeytown Horse Campground

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