A lovely, natural BLM boondocking area on very pretty Eagle Lake in NE California.
Location: Eagle Lake, CA (info on camping HERE)
Coordinates: 40.68785,-120.747605 (approx.). Link to map location HERE . Also see HERE
Cost: FREE (2 week stay limit)
How We Found It: I initially found the developed BLM campground (North Eagle Lake) on uscampgrounds.info, but it was too small for us (and we confirmed this on arrival), but I then discovered that the BLM allows dispersed camping in two other areas (Rocky Point East & Rocky Point West) which looked like they might be a possibility. A call into the local BLM office regarding road conditions & access confirmed it was worth a try.
Nearest Dump/Water: Water is available at the BLM campground (North Eagle Lake) just past the turn-off to Country Road A-1. Several dump-stations near Susanville, CA.
- Access – 3/5
There are 2 main boondocking areas at Rocky Point -> one on the east side and one on the west of the “point”. Access is good except for short areas of each point:
-> Rocky Point East – From Hwy 139, take County Road A-1 (good, paved road) around 5 miles to the left turn-off at Lakeside drive (very wide, firm & flat dirt road). Follow Lakeside ~1/2 mile down to a smaller dirt road that turns right along the east shoreline of Rocky Point. This last road is the only “difficult” access. It is fairly narrow and bumpy in spots, but there are no trees and you need only drive ~1/2 mile to get a good, wide parking area with a view. I would not advise big-rigs to drive further than the first 2 parking spots since road conditions get much bumpier plus turn-around could be difficult after this point.
-> Rocky Point West - This area is only ~1 mile further on from Rocky Point East. So, from Hwy 139 you take County Road A-1 ~6 miles (all paved). After you’ve crested the hill at the end of a long downhill you’ll see a road go along the west shoreline of Rocky Point to the left. The only major obstacle here is the initial 50 feet of the road is a rather steep, S-shaped downhill (but do-able, I thought). After this the road is a decent dirt road with some mix of sand, but firm enough to support bigger rigs. Lots of sites along this road once you get down here, all quite large with ability to turn-around.
- Nature – 5/5
Simply beautiful nature here. You have sweeping views of Eagle Lake, with a background of hills from the “point”. Lots of space to explore and hike including all along the shoreline. Fishing on the lake available too.
- Isolation – 4/5
Very good isolation here. The only folks that seem to come down to Rocky Point are campers and fishermen. The dirt roads are off the main road and very quiet. You’ll have a distant view of the small villages on each side of Rocky Point, but nothing else man-made. While we were there no-one was in sight and only ~2 cars travelled down the road to go fishing.
- Pet Friendliness – 5/5
Great pet spot. You are right next to miles of shore-line walking by Eagle Lake including lots of space around your campground. Plenty of areas to explore and let doggie run.
Overall Rating = 4.25
Summary: Well, this spot was simply lovely! It’s the kind of boondocking spot that you (or at least I) always dream about. Lots of surrounding nature, beautiful lake views, isolation and quiet, yet you still have excellent internet signal and a space large enough to allow not just one, but two “beasts” to hang out. The BLM area at Eagle Lake covers most of the NE portion of the lake (the west side is actually covered by the Forest Service, which has camping too). The best dispersed BLM camping (in my opinion) is at Rocky Point which you can access from either side on dirt roads along the shore. There are a few small access difficulties (see above), but very decent considering the area. We found a simply lovely spot for both our rigs only ~1/2 mile down at Rocky Point East and were the only folks in sight during the time we were there. If you go I’d advise scoping out the area in your toad (or other vehicle) before bringing in the rig since the road can get bumpy in areas. This is a great spot and I’d most certainly come back.
Extra Info: No water or facilities at either boondocking location. FULL Verizon 3G signal at Rocky Point East (!) so great data & voice access.
Extra, Extra Info – EASIER BOONDOCKING? The entire NE corner of Eagle Lake is BLM land and this extends down south from Country Road A-1 along Hwy 139. So, if you’re not keen on driving to Rocky Point you can actually pull directly off Hwy 139 at several easy boondocking spots (quite easy to spot too) with decent lake views. Not as isolated as Rocky Point, but an easier alternative for those who need it.
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