THEN, I just saw a Twitter report on MSNBC.com that says that California's budget woes could mean "closing down 220 state parks, including scenic attractions that draw millions of visitors." Yikes! That could be a disaster for family camping vacations (though a park spokesperson admitted that the plan is a "worst case scenario").
Still, I'm going. My plans are inspired by Sunset Magazine's May issue and its epic story on the West's best camping spots (plus, full disclosure, I helped a little bit with the story). So where can we happy campers and our families go?
For a list of 94 Cailfornia state parks that allow camping, like Jedediah Smith Redwoods (shown above), and take reservations, click here. Several of my fave parks show up on the supposed hit list, including Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay and Humboldt Redwoods State Park, along with non-camping parks like Will Rogers' Southern California ranch and Bodie State Historic Park (which is a beautifully preserved ghost town and a photographer's dream-shown at right; no camping here). Best advice? Call your park and check before setting out.
Details: For complete camping info in the state parks, call 800-444-PARK (7275) or click here.
PHOTO CREDIT: Both Courtesy of California State Parks, 2009.