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Camping within an hour of Disneyland..
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timbo
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 5:31 am    Post subject: Camping within an hour of Disneyland.. Reply with quote

Hi all ! We're heading to the wonderful world of Disney this coming August.....in order to afford Disney Passes we plan to camp.Return trip will be tripping up the Oregon Coast.

I've been checking out some spots in the San Gabriel mtns which seem pretty sweet. We plan to hit Universal Studios, La Brea, and a few other spots too, and the SG mtns seem pretty close to where we want to visit.

Any suggestions??

We're 2 adults and 4 kids, camping veterans.

cheers !
tim
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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, it is hard to get a lot of privacy in SoCal but I have camped at Prado Regional Park in Chino.

http://cms.sbcounty.gov/parks/Parks/PradoRegionalPark.aspx

Better than an RV park inasmuch as the sites a spaced in more a campground style. Sometimes you can smell the cows at the dairy.

I have also 'camped' at Orangeland:

http://www.orangeland.com/

That really is an RV park -- cheek-to-jowl with big motorhomes. But it is clean and convenient.


Last edited by Ahwahnee on Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:19 am; edited 1 time in total
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0to60in6min
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

do you like to camp near the beach? it's summer, a swim in the ocean before Disneyland would be nice..

on PCH in Huntington Beach there's a section of beach parking for RV and camper to stay overnight...
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jacklndn
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Something to know about Southern California is the way that distance is expressed: in time. It's been like this since at least the 1960's.

The density of cars, and the traffic patterns mean that something 60 miles away on a clear freeway would be sixty minutes. That same trip at a different time of day could be three or even four hours. Same thing applies for travel on main thoroughfares. If you ask an Angeleno, or almost any coastal Southern Californian how far away something is they'll either look at their watch first, or ask you "When?", and then answer with the amount of time it will take to get there.

So, what looks like an easy trip on a map from a camp site to Disneyland could be a half day of travel, in reality.

When you're planning to hit Disney, Universal, Knotts, etc., it may be worth biting the bullet and buying a space in a campsite adjacent the park. They have terrific facilities for hundreds of RVs at all of these parks, they're really experienced at this stuff, even more so than the casinos, and parks cater to families and want you to come back. In all likelihood after a day at an amusement park in August you're all just going to collapse and sleep like logs anyway. The setting wont be as important as it is when you're really camping.

If you've not been to LA before or even in the last few years you may find it beneficial to go online and check out the live morning commute maps on the Los Angeles television station websites (KNXT, KNBC, KCAL, KABC, KTTV). That will give you a realistic idea of the travel times per distance and help you decide how far you're willing travel in stop and go traffic in a loaded Westy full of eager kids and possibly with a clutch!

If you've kept four kids alive you probably already know this. You may want to keep some real food in the Westy. While good, fresh, real food is very plentiful in nearly all So Cal supermarkets, amusement parks are nutrition-free zones. The surrounding available food options (chain restaurants) won't be much better, and after a day of walking and running and screaming on rollercoasters in the sun you won't feel like unhooking and driving anywhere.

And, not to burst any bubbles or alienate my former brethren and sistern in the travel business, check out the live weather cams on those websites while you're there online. They will have long distance view-shots of the mointain horizons. Camping on the west side of the San Gabriel mountains in August could be an excercise in aerobic stamina and will to live. The smog for the entire LA basin rolls up along the mountains there like a giant horizontal gray and brown jelly roll. Other parts of the San Gabriels, and at other times of the year can be stunningly beautiful.

Plan to hit the La Brea Tar pits mid-morning. (I used to work in the highrise across the street, back when cars had chrome horn rings and fresh dinosaurs were still getting stuck there every night). In the morning the tar is exposed, and a little more creepy for added effect. By late afternoon the water table has risen and it just looks like a pond. That's how the poor creatures got stuck there, they would wade in to drink in what they thought was a pond, and one or more feet would get stuck. The more they struggled the more stuck they became.

Please leave time to scoot sideways to Santa Monica and the beaches (it's a straight shot down Wilshire from the Tar Pits), they're some of the most enjoyable parts of urban LA, and experiencing them will answer that question you'll know doubt come away with: Why would anybody want to live here?

Sorry for the long winded post. I was in the travel industry for twenty years, based out of Santa Barbara, and know that this can be one of the memorable trips of a lifetime with some advance information. Take lots of pictures, and please post some of them here.

Enjoy!
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GoWestyYoungMan
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The San Gab mtns were nice about six years ago, but wildfires have distroyed everything. The illegals have streun litter everywhere like they do in Mexico's mountains.
The only option is Malibu coast on PCH it will crowded in August so a reservationis best. Try Topanga State Beach campground an hour from downtown LA.
For the Disneyland leg either Trabuco Cyn campground or Doheney State Beach campground one hour Disneyland.
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bitingspider
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

These are south of Disneyland, but O'Neil at least is within an hour. I've been there- it's decent- never camped though. One thing I couldn't tell you is whether these are prone to the incessant black flies which interior California gets in the summer (especially in the Los Padres).

O'Neil Regional Park in Mission Viejo
http://www.ocparks.com/oneillpark/

Looks like there's camping off the 74 - Ortega Hwy - part Cleveland Nat'l Forest part local parks.
http://www.theortegahighway.com/Fun/camping.html
I've done a couple of hikes from the top- nice in late fall,winter,spring.

The Hwy 2 San Gabes are quite a bit away, but I believe the Station Fire missed the really high country which would be best regardless. Buckhorn campground, if spared, is pretty nice, but it's about 1.5 hours (easily 2 Westy hours) from Foothill, let alone Disneyland.

There is probably camping up near Mt Baldy but I'm unfamiliar with it.
Manker Flats is the name. Looks decent.
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sub-hatchtim
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the pamona fairplex is nice
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AZ-Nick
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check out a day or two at Crystal Cove State Park. This is about 45 minutes South of Disney if you leave after 9 or so. Lots to do nearby and miles of beach for the kids to unwind on. Depending on the ages of your kids you could also head about an hour South for Legoland. You will be too far South for the LA portion of your trip(unless you don't mind about 1 to 1.5 hrs each way) but I would highly recommend this for a day or two.

http://www.crystalcovestatepark.com/camping.htm
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70coupyel
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Calif State Parks would be your best bet for real camping. Almost all weekends are booked for any state campground by the beach.
You should be able to reservations for mid week stays.
Bolsa Chica is the closest. I did not see online if non self-contained campers are permitted at Bolsa Chica. Call them.
A quick check and mid week res. for BCSB are showing for in Aug right now. Weekends start showing up in the 3rd week in Oct.

Also check RV parks around Disneyland. Make sure shower are available. Non self-contained camper also.
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timbo
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the spots to check out.....! Very Happy

We did this trip a few years back and hotelled it right across from the park.Want to mix it up a bit this time around.

Last time we missed Santa Monica, the kids want to see the Hollywood sign up close, and I've talked about the TarPits and Petersen museum. Nice to know the SM Pier is just down the road too!!

CrystalCove definitley sounds like a place we want to check out too. 3 weeks or so tripping around, can't wait to be on the beaches again....
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whafalia
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We just rolled back last night, did 3 nights at the Anaheim RV Village 10 minute walk from the park. Yes it is a parking lot with palm trees, but you get showers a pool and you get to plug in and so on, clean, nice. Fireworks look good from there too. Also took more than 2 1/2 hours to get there from Santa Monica on a friday evening so really appreciated a few days without driving. Cost after aaa discount was about $60 a night. Just parking at disney is $15, $20 if they charge you as an rv. Lots of good choices for you, Have Fun!
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GoWestyYoungMan
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Regarding Cyrstal Cove, the best access road is Laguna Cyn Rd from the 405-5 Y in Irvine...PCH has a lot of signals and slowness up and down the coast more senic though.
Has good hiking, mountain biking trails too, be aware of coyotes around the northern section of the park.
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singler3360
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

whafalia wrote:
We just rolled back last night, did 3 nights at the Anaheim RV Village 10 minute walk from the park. Yes it is a parking lot with palm trees, but you get showers a pool and you get to plug in and so on, clean, nice. Fireworks look good from there too. Also took more than 2 1/2 hours to get there from Santa Monica on a friday evening so really appreciated a few days without driving. Cost after aaa discount was about $60 a night. Just parking at disney is $15, $20 if they charge you as an rv. Lots of good choices for you, Have Fun!


x2. The fireworks from the Westy luggage rack was truly great. The road noise takes some getting used to but this is true all over southern CA.

EDIT:
New Years midnight show
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Borrowed an Add-a-Room since we had two teenagers and were staying 3 nights in each place we camped. We will put the BD Ezy Awning system on our wish list since its lighter and modular.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Last edited by singler3360 on Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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dkoesyncro
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We just did this same thing last spring, camped at Point Mougue (moo-goo) for about 20 a night, had showers fire pits, developed primitive camping. It's about .5 south of Malibu on highway 1. Also alot of road side camping in malibu along the ocean, Its a first come first serve mostly dominated by surfers.

We did this in the Passat wagon, family of four. also did the Santa Monica Pier thats worth while to do, Keep clear of Hollywood It's a dive.

Its an expensive place! I would crash at truck stops and stay out all day and into the late eve. and retreat to the truckers lounge when ready to sleep-
Thats my plan for the family this next spring when we take the van. Lots of fun ahead for your family.
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