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Old 07-10-2012, 08:01 PM   #1
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Boon-docking in Mammoth?

We'll be taking the new (to us) Sportsmobile up to Mammoth this weekend. All of the campgrounds are either full-up or on a first-come first-served basis. Looking for any suggestions for boon-docking locations in the area, hopefully not too far off the beaten path since this will be a getting-to-know-you trip with the new vehicle.
On or near the water preferred?

Thanks, been pulling great info off of this site for several months now. Very happy we finally pulled the trigger!

-Mark & Mary...
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:05 PM   #2
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

It's not boondocking, but have you tried Convict Lake campground?


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Old 07-10-2012, 08:09 PM   #3
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
It's not boondocking, but have you tried Convict Lake campground?


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All full up... Too bad, that was one of my grandparents favorite spots. It's definitely on the must hit list, thanks!
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:28 PM   #4
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

Try the area called Deadman creek campground by Obsidian dome. 3743'19.25"N,119 0'29.60"W
It is primitive first come. The road starts off 395 left to the west just past the rest area north of Mamouth turn off, and before you get to the caltrans yard on the right. 3744'46.44"N,11858'48.94"W. Has a nice creek that usualy has water, some nice campsites further up the road also.

Enjoy
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:32 PM   #5
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

Also not boondocking, but Devil's Postpile is always one of my favorites. Unfortunately, summertime is not conducive to spontaneous camping in most of Calif.


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Old 07-10-2012, 10:22 PM   #6
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DosMars
We'll be taking the new (to us) Sportsmobile up to Mammoth this weekend. All of the campgrounds are either full-up or on a first-come first-served basis. Looking for any suggestions for boon-docking locations in the area, hopefully not too far off the beaten path since this will be a getting-to-know-you trip with the new vehicle.
On or near the water preferred?

Thanks, been pulling great info off of this site for several months now. Very happy we finally pulled the trigger!

-Mark & Mary...
You can boondock anywhere in the national forest as long as you're some specified distance from the main road. What that distance is I have no clue and is likely irrelevant.

The area between Mammoth and June has many good places to boondock camp. Ditto for the atea north of Benton Crossing Road and south of the 395. There is also a semi developed campground on DWP land west of the 395 near the airport at the base of the mountains.

Good luck and have fun.

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Old 07-10-2012, 10:25 PM   #7
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

I'd say Laurel Lakes but that's not actually a novice trail. There is a CG (Sherwin cr) on the trail in but its probably packed.

If you want to head toward Mono Lake, you can go east on 120 and there are several trails that lead into the southern hills. Many of these start off in shrub but there are a few spots that are in the pines. You can boon dock wherever it looks good but the camps are usually located in the nicer spots.
1S17 is the first road and is a steady climb to a nice meadow where a rough camp with forest service heads and tables.

Another further east on 120 is Taylor canyon similar to above but in aspens.

The best is Sawmill/Kelty meadow via Black Canyon road 1S01. Like the others there are tables and a head. The meadow is nice.

No running water at any of these. I'm getting the forest service road numbers off the Northern cal backcountry adventures book. I'm not sure the numbers are correct as I don't use the book to get into these places. I suggest grabbing a forest service map of the area but the new backcountry adventures is worth buying if you can find one. All the trails are doable in 2WD.

Good Luck
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Old 07-11-2012, 09:51 AM   #8
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

R is correct, so is Dave. There is plenty of boondocking if you look around. Get a topo or forest service map. Campgrounds are not boon docking, people. There are vast networks of dirt roads in that area.
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Old 07-11-2012, 10:07 AM   #9
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

We nearly always boon-dock on weekends while in Mammoth since our favorite campground, Convict Lake, fills up with too many generators and loud campers on weekends.

Here is where we typically go. Head north on Highway 395 about 5 miles (just past the left turn to the rest stop) and turn right onto Owens River Road. I've seen large RVs camped on the right side of the road (south side) many times just after the turn onto Owens River Road. This is all forest service and you can camp anywhere you want...there are a lot of dirt roads here.

There is forest service campground a little ways up the road on the left. However, it tends to fill up with ATV and motorcross owners who use those same dirt roads for their riding their ATVs and motor bikes. We now prefer to continue east on Convict River Road up and over the ridge and then turn right on the first dirt road after you get back down to the open valley...this road comes into Owens River Road on a shallow angle so you might need to swing wide to turn into it. The road is about 3 miles from Highway 395. Go about 1/4 mile and turn left on the first dirt road you come to. There is a nice level campsite just beyond the turn. There are several area levels sites here too if you continue straight and try some of the other spurs.

No water, etc. but lots of trees and shade and you're only about 10-15 minutes from Mammoth Lakes...
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Old 07-12-2012, 04:50 AM   #10
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Re: Boon-docking in Mammoth?

Thanks for all the great info everyone. We'll be printing this out and bringing it with us to refer back to as we play it by ear. Were 'staying' with a group of friends who are renting a condo so we want to be reasonably close. A campground where we can have everyone over for a campfire with bathroom facilities nearby would be our first choice (next to a lake with fish so thick and hungry you get bored with the monotony of pulling them in would be a nice bonus ). Summer being what it is, we'll take what we can get.

I'll be hitting REI and the bookstore tomorrow, any specific topo maps or forest service maps, other than general Mammoth, Eastern Sieras area I should keep an eye out for? I was looking through my copy of Backcountry Adventures, but my copy is for the Southern California region and cuts off just at the edges of where I'm researching. I'll be putting in an Amazon order for the book on the Northern region; both will have a prominent spot on the Sportmobile's bookshelf.

When the little ones get older, I want to tell them we have a three day weekend coming up: Here's a map, find someplace within an x-mile radius from home...
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