The campgrounds in this region are scattered along a portion of Highway 108 from Beardsley Reservoir to Niagara Creek. Some are primitive campgrounds popular with people who simply want a place to park their RV; others offer more thickly forested settings with more complete facilities.
Stanislaus National Forest news release:
Sonora, Calif. (February 14, 2014)… Now in the final stage of improvements associated with a hydro re-licensing that only happens once every 40 years, the Stanislaus National Forest (NF) is opening Beardsley Day Use Area today.
There may be additional closures this spring for asphalt pouring and completion of the road, trail and parking surfaces. The closures will be brief and intermittent.
Boaters will note changes at the bottom of the boat ramp. Although the ramp has been extended an additional 250 feet, the drought has taken the reservoir far below the bottom of the ramp. The bottom of the boat ramp is closed to the low reservoir levels because of rocky and deep sandy conditions hazardous to launching. Water levels would need to raise approx. 12 to 15 ft. before the ramp could be opened.
Beardsley Dam Campground is on the north bank of the reservoir. In 2013 the campground was "re-constructed" with all new amenties and a campground host. To reach the campground, drive 4 miles east of Strawberry and turn onto the paved road to Beardsley Reservoir. Follow it 9 miles down to the lake, across the dam, and around to the far side.
Details about the renovated campground have not been released yet. The campground is scheduled to open on May 17, 2014.
Black Oak Campground is a new campground near Beardsley Reservoir. It is scheduled to open on May 17, 2014. Details about the campground will be posted as they become available.
Cascade Creek Campground is located adjacent to Highway 108 at an elevation of 6,000'. It is 9 miles east of Strawberry.
It makes a good place to park an RV when you are more interested in OHV-ing or hunting, but it lacks much scenic appeal as a camping place. Vault toilets are primitive. There is no garbage collection here, so you have to pack out your garbage. It is more open than other campgrounds, making it one of the first in the area to be open in the spring. The campground is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Mill Creek Campground is located at Mill Creek along Highway 108 at an elevation of 6,300'. To reach the campground drive east from Strawberry 11.5 miles and turn right onto the Mill Creek Road. In less than half a mile you will arrive at the campground on the bank of Mill Creek. The campground has enough open space to maneuver RVs and trailers. It is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Niagara Creek Campground is 14 miles east of Strawberry. Turn right onto Eagle Meadow Road. Go .7 miles to the campground, keeping to the left when the roads split. The campground is situated at an elevation of 6,600'. The campground is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Niagara Creek OHV Campground is on Eagle Meadow Road. Drive 14 miles east of Strawberry and turn right onto Eagle Meadow Road. Go 2.7 miles to the campground, keeping to the right whenever the road split. The campground is situated at an elevation of 7,000'. There is no garbage collection here, so you have to pack out your garbage. The campground is on a first-come, first-served basis.