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“Green Valley Camping at Cuyamaca”

Cuyamaca Rancho State Park
Ranked #1 of 3 things to do in Descanso
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Owner description: This park's beautiful pine and oak forests, meadows and streams are unusual in this part of the country.
Reviewed 27 May 2013

What a great place to take our kids camping! We have four kids, from age 13 down to 6. We camp a few times a year and were looking for a new spot. Cuyamaca was a beautiful getaway.

A bit of a drive for us, but not far from San Diego, Green Valley Campground at Cuyamaca Rancho State Park feels like you have gone far away. At about 4000 ft there are a lot more trees than closer to the ocean and the climate was much cooler.

When we first arrived, the Ranger was super nice and helpful. We bought our firewood right there for $6/bundle. Also, trail maps are available for $2.

As we drove around the campground, we noticed MOST of the sites were private with lots of trees and shade. It is a rolling hill type of campground with loop roads all around.

We stayed on site 81, which was at the end of the road. It was a pretty good site, but had shade in the morning and sun at noon. It was also hard to find a flat spot for the tent. As we observed other sites, it seems to be the topography of this campground in general. Not very flat sights.

We took a hike and found a wonderful river to play around. Large rocks and waterfalls and a place to jump in a pool. Even for Memorial weekend, it didn't feel overcrowded. There were several hikes to choose from and all different distances.

The bathrooms were pretty good for a campground. It did run out of TP some of the time, but we always bring some with us. The showers were 2 minutes for a quarter. I showered at peak time and had plenty of hot water. I think it was pretty clean and well maintained for a busy weekend.

Overall, this was a really great place to camp and I would highly recommend it.

13  Thank Tasiadoo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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49 - 53 of 58 reviews

Reviewed 27 April 2013

I recently had my first "legit" camping experience at Cuyamaca State Park, in the Paso Pichacho campground. It's a great site for people who are new to camping that may want to ease into it, as it has running taps, restrooms, and even warm showers (bring quarters). There are also some camp spots within the grounds where the car parking spot is paved, so your car doesn't even have to go "off-road" for a second. Firewood is available for purchase, too.

There are many hikes, of which I did two, both of which are very doable (just bring plenty of water, especially for Cuyamaca Peak), with several great views along the way (Stonewall peak had the better view, I thought). Make sure to bring a camera!

You'll have to bring your own food, and be aware that you are in nature, even at the campground itself, so don't leave food out unattended, or else you'll get ants and other pests.

Also, while in the area, stop by the nearby town of Julian, CA for some amazing pies!

2  Thank emcee24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2013 via mobile

Cuyamaca has so many trails, it would be difficult to get bored. One of my favorite places to hike, bike or camp.

3  Thank LDHallihan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 January 2013

Cuyamaca is Fantastic. Camping in the state park has always been a Great Experience. My wife and I have camped there for years and after we had children...we still consider it one of our favorite Camping spots.
The lake is great fun and fishing is my kids favorite thing to do. Catfish are always plentiful and great fun for my 11 and 13 year olds.
Not a ton of things to do which to us...makes it prfect! Camp, walk trails, fish, RELAX!!!!

5  Thank Dave A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 January 2013

I enjoyed the hike I did on Mt. Cuyamaca. Even though the weather was fairly poor with bad visibility and some light mist, it was an enjoyable hike. The cooler weather was refreshing and the hike itself is not too much of a challenge in terms of terrain so it's great to bring amateur hikers who are in shape (there are a few fairly steep inclines). Not many people at all were around which was also nice - made me enjoy the rural nature of it all the more.

2  Thank Danma11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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