What Can I See and Do on My Way to Clear Lake Campground?
Whether you want to hike, visit a winery, shop, or just enjoy a scenic drive, routes to or from Lake County offer several options. Most wineries are currently open by reservation only so be sure to call ahead. Other places suggested may also be closed or have limited hours so we advise you to check in advance.
These are our suggestions for your drive to Clear Lake Campground, depending on which direction you'll be coming from - or on your drive home (just reverse the directions).
From Sacramento area:
Instead of taking I5 to Hwy 20, take the Hwy 16 exit near Woodland and follow the slightly longer but more scenic route through the Capay Valley. Along Hwy 16 you'll pass small farms, olive groves, and almond and fruit orchards as you drive through the tiny towns of Esparto, Capay, Brooks, and Guinda. Just before Brooks is the huge Cache Creek Casino Resort, the only big development in this rural area. In Brooks, stop at Seka Hills Olive Mill for olive oil and other local products. Capay Valley Vineyards, also in Brooks offers visits by appointment (530- 796-4110). The historic Commons Farm Kitchen in Guinda is a roadside eatery dating from 1926 with outdoor dining or food to go. Cache Creek runs through the valley along Hwy 16 to Cache Creek Regional Park, a good spot for a picnic. It's also a popular place for inner tubing on the creek. When you get to Hwy 20, turn left.
Along Hwy 20 from I5:
Coming from either south or north, take Hwy 20 west. The exit is near the town of Williams where you can stop at the historic Granzella's Restaurant for take-out or food shopping in their store. Continuing on Hwy 20, or if you're joining Hwy 20 from the scenic Hwy 16 route, hikers can stop at the Redbud Trail hiking area in the Cache Creek Management Area on the left side of the highway as you're heading toward Lake County. You'll get great views and may even see Tule Elk. Two wineries are along this route (call ahead for reservations to visit): Cache Creek Vineyards and Brassfield.
* Note: If you like these options, you can also take this route to/from Fairfield, Concord, or Oakland although it's longer.
From San Francisco and the South Bay on the 101 Freeway:
From 101, you have several options depending on how much extra time you have. But if you want to spend the day on your road trip, you could visit some places along the coast on your way (note that traffic may be bad along the coast on weekends though). Popular coast destinations include Point Reyes National Seashore, Bodega Bay, or Jenner. But here are more convenient options, depending on how long you want to spend on the road:
From the East Bay and San Francisco through the Napa Valley:
From Highway 80, exit at Highway 37 in Vallejo. You'll pass Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, a place the kids might enjoy. Turn right onto Highway 29 toward Napa, then you have 2 options:
Whichever way you decide to drive, we look forward to welcoming you at Clear Lake Campground:
Calling all northern Californian campers:
It's always a good time to dream about your ideal vacation in your RV or camper even if you're not ready to travel yet. Are you dreaming of a great place to fish right at camp? Do you want to kayak or launch your boat? How about bird-watching or access to nearby hiking trails. Or maybe you just want a convenient, relaxing place to escape for the weekend with your family.
Clear Lake Campground, on the shore of Cache Creek in Lake County, is the perfect place for any of these activities. We're a small, friendly vintage RV park with full hook-ups that's easy to access from the Bay Area, Sacramento, and many places in northern California.
Anderson Marsh State Park is across the creek from us, so from the waterfront camp sites you'll have a great view of nature. From our shore you can fish for catfish, crappie, and blue gill and if you have a boat, you can easily get to Clear Lake, known as the best lake for bass fishing west of the Mississippi. Anderson Marsh has hiking trails and is a good place for bird watching. The entrance is just a few minutes drive from camp.
Planning your vacation can be a fun activity itself and research shows that it can be good for your mental health. So browse our web site and blog posts to fuel your camping dream and plan to visit us when we reopen:
This summer plan a vacation close to home and discover new places and things to do in northern California. Bring your RV or camper to Clear Lake Campground and explore the natural beauty of Lake County.
Sign up for Clear Lake Campground's newsletter
to get more ideas for your camping vacation. We look forward to seeing you soon!
January 30 is National Plan Your Vacation Day and it's the perfect time to book a camp site at Clear Lake Campground. If you like to camp, why not plan a camping vacation each month? Clear Lake Campground is now open all year so if you have a small RV (up to 30 feet) you can even come up in winter.
Clear Lake is a top place for fishing and has been rated as the second best lake in the United States for bass fishing. It's a prime location for birding, kayaking, or just relaxing. Lake County also has live music, special events and activities year round. Monthly events include the Fiddlers Jam at Ely Stage Stop the first Sunday of the month and guided walks at Anderson Marsh most months on the second Saturday morning.
Here's a sampling of top events for each month:
Start the year with a guided walk at Anderson Marsh State Park, across the creek from the campground. Join the First Day Hike on January 1, usually starting at noon.
February is a great month for a wine weekend. Several wineries have special weekend events in February and most tasting rooms are open too. Barrels & Verticals Tasting is usually held the last Saturday of the month.
March is when fishing really starts picking up. The Clear Lake Bass Tournament is held in mid-March.
April is usually a top month for kayaking and boating. Kayak rentals can be arranged right at the campground. Spring break is a great time to come to Clear Lake Campground.
In May one of the top events is Heron Days, sponsored by the Lake County Audubon Society. Held right at Clear Lake Campground, activities include pontoon boat tours in Anderson Marsh. The Catfish Derby, held in Clearlake Oaks, is billed as the largest catfish tournament west of the Mississippi. Wine Adventure Weekend is held later in May, with more than 25 wineries participating. Mother's Day is in May so if your mom likes to camp, treat her to a weekend at Clear Lake Campground. There's a special Mother's Day concert at Soper Reese Theater in Lakeport and several restaurants have a special Mother's Day brunch.
June is the month to relive the wild west. Upper Lake Wild West Day is usually held the first Saturday of the month, with a parade, ice cream social, BBQ, live music, and activities for kids. Mid-month is Middletown Days, with a parade, BBQ, horseshoe tournament, chili cook off, hay rides, and even Cowboy Church on Sunday. A camping weekend makes a good Father's Day gift, too.
4th of July is a great time to come to Clear Lake Campground. Fireworks are spread out over several nights at different locations around the lake and there's a street fair in Lakeport. In Clearlake there's a small parade followed by the International Worm Races. The CDFW usually schedules a free fishing day on the weekend before July 4 and you can fish right at the campground.
August events include free Friday night concerts in Lakeport's Library Park and the Lakeside Car and Boat Show in mid-August with music, vendors, food, and high-performance boats making passes by Library Park.
The first weekend in September is the Lake County Fair held in Lakeport with lots of fun events for the whole family. The Kelseyville Pear Festival, a huge street fair and parade celebrating Lake County's agricultural heritage, is the last weekend of the month.
The first Saturday in October is the Konocti Challenge Cycling Race. Participants can sign up for one of 4 different bicycling routes around Clear Lake, ranging from a 20 mile family fun ride to a century ride. Steele Winery usually holds a Harvest Festival the second weekend of October, with lots of fun activities for the whole family.
In November there are several arts and crafts fairs including the Dickens' Faire, the last Saturday of the month in downtown Lakeport.
Clearlake's Christmas parade is held the first Saturday of December. Anderson Marsh holds Christmas at the Ranch in December also.
For more special events and the live music schedule, see the Lake County Chamber of Commerce Events Calendar.
More about when to visit Clear Lake Campground:
Martha Bakerjian is a travel writer who divides her time between Clearlake and northern Tuscany. She writes about Italy on her site, Martha's Italy.