Crowley Lake, California (near Mammoth Lakes)
Today was moving day. But not too far. About 75 miles. We had decided to stay a total of 3 days at Boulder Creek RV Resort (park), just south of Lone Pine, California. Why 3 days? Who knows? Chock it up to retirement, and not really being in a hurry. It worked out well. We were able to visit the Museum of Western Film, check out Movie Rd. and the various locations where scenes were filmed in the Alabama Hills as well as checking out future boondocking spots there, and took a drive up the Whitney Portal Road that takes you on a switchback up to the Mt. Whitney trailhead deep in a granite and heavily forested canyon at some 9,000 ft. Just beautiful, for a relatively short drive from Lone Pine.
So anyway, today we moseyed up 395 to Crowley Lake, just south of Mammoth Lakes, about 10 miles further up the road . We could have stayed in Mammoth Lakes at Mammoth Mountain RV Park. But at $59 per night, we thought we could do better. So, we’re sitting on the slope of the Sierras at a BLM campground known as Crowley Lake Campground. It is dispersed camping, but we don’t mind. We have an unbelievable view in nearly every direction. Directly in front of us is Crowley Lake, about a mile distant and several hundred feet lower than our site. Crowley’s claim to fame is that it is “Mecca” to folks coming up from L.A. for “opening day” of trout fishing on the lake in April of each year. The lake itself is a dam’d up portion of the famed Owens River, one of the best trout fishing areas in the world. Today, in early August, the lake has nary a boat on it. But come back in April and the lake will look like a parking lot, what with the sheer number of boats on the water.
For $2.50 per day with our Senior Pass, staying here was a no-brainer. And although we were worried whether there would be any campsites in the middle of summer, we should not have been concerned. The campground has 47 sites, and ALL of them are first come-first served. So, arriving in the early afternoon in the middle of the week allowed us to select from half the sites. Even though our new “coach” is nearly 37 feet long, even with our former 32 foot Bounder, we have always intended to spend a good deal of our time boondocking. So we were glad to find several sites that were deep enough to accommodate us. It’s hard to believe that we could stay here the entire 14 day limit for a total of $35 with our Senior Pass. No electrical, no sewer, no water at the site. But who cares? We’re equipped. Woohoo!!
I mentioned that our front view overlooks the lake. Our backyard is the Sierras, with gradual upslopes of green sage brush evolving into pine forest and granite peaks at higher elevations. Combine all this with the limitless views across large expanses of open high country and beautiful cumulus clouds in all directions, and it’s…priceless.
The one downside is that we have no internet nor any cell service. So, I’m writing this in my Open Office “Word” program, for further transfer when we once again can go online. Stay tuned.
In the meantime, no sooner were we settled in than a fire broke out up near Mono Lake to our north. They reported that it started at about 2:30 in the afternoon. By the time I took this photo toward evening, it was well underway. Interestingly, another fire broke out the next day, much closer to the south of us. It wasn’t too long before we had a front row seat as helicopters and flying cranes began using Crowley Lake to get water to be used in fighting both fires.
While staying at this campground, we took several day trips with the Jeep. On one of those trips, we came across these guys up in the Mammoth area on the road that takes you to the Mammoth Mountain Main (Ski) Lodge.
The Mammoth area is well-known to us, having lived just about 250 miles south for the past 25+ years. So, we wanted to revisit some places, and explore some new places. One of those new places was the campground at Crowley Lake. It’s not the most developed campground we have stayed in, but the location was right, the price was unbelievable with our Geezer pass, and the view from our frontyard was priceless.