RV Road Trip: Redding & Shasta
Blog about a 2 week RV trip in May 2022 from Bay Area to North California — Redding and Mt. Shasta.
- Perry Riffle BLM. The first day was at a BLM location, because it was getting dark and we wanted a place to stop by.
- Redding Marina RV park was our home for 1 week. Central location while we explored Redding.
- Lake Siskiyou campground was our home for 2 nights, to look at the lake, visit Castle Crags, town of Mt Shasta, and drive to the top of the Mt. Shasta road- at least until Bunny Flats where the road remains closed from the winter.
- Fowlers Campground was great near McCloud waterfalls, and we drove to the McArthur-Burney falls and Hat Creek.
- Last stop in Fairfield was at a friend’s location overnight. That’s all.
Originally the idea was to do a loop from I-5 and come back on the Eastern side — but given the 2 week time constraint, this was going to be fairly tiring, and a lot of driving. With the toad SUV, it is better to slow down and enjoy a place, really “live” there and get a sense of the community, instead of the feeling of on-the-move everyday.
We wanted to see Mt. Shasta and Lassen National Park. California’s landscape is unique in US, and perhaps in the world, because there are all seasons in such a small area, and it’s all because of the geographic forces that shaped North America.
Perry Riffle BLM
Just a quick overnight stop here. Free dry camping. Lots of mountain biking trails here.
This is a city that gets pretty hot. Obviously not as scenic as the parks we are going but fairly close. And it has great bike trails on Sacramento River with great views. We spent 7 days here.
Lassen National Park
The park was closed but the roads were cleared and allowed for bike access. We biked a little just enough to see the mountain tops.
Castle Crags State Park
Scenic park with Mount Shasta views, a river for swimming & fishing, campsites & 28 miles of trails.
Pulled in at night and let me tell you, don’t bring a 28’ travel trailer and F350 long bed in here!!! — Timothy Temple
There were only a couple, maybe 3–5 campsites, that could accommodate our 32ft class A and parking for a SUV. Dry camping here, and there aren’t a lot of things to see besides hikes to do at the park. It’s a bit of a drive out from everything.
It was worth a day trip to hike this area. Good views of the waterfall, and Crags.
Actually the view of the Crags seemed better at the Railroad Park Resort, for free.
This campground was booked off and we decided to spend a couple hours. Glad we did that because although we liked the train cars, and the scene of Crags behind it, there wasn’t much to do in the town of Dunsmuir. There are couple of waterfalls and hikes but it pales in comparison of the other waterfalls we were going to visit, such as McArthur-Burney Falls.
One thing we didn’t like was the lack of public bathrooms, and a diner that only opened after 5 pm. So there are almost no facilities here, besides the gifts shop — which had no bathrooms either. Thumbs down. C’mon.
Located on the SW side of Lake Siskiyou, with panoramic views of Mt Shasta and the Shasta Trinity National Forest.
Campground at Lake Siskiyou was large and quite popular. The full hookups for $54 / night.
The idea with Starlink was to get internet where there is no cell signal. But actually at campgrounds, there are almost always usable cell signal, at least on this trip. Few exceptions are in Lassen NP, but we didn’t stay there long enough to really matter.
Campground here was pretty good.
This was a well known local trout and salmon fishing area.
Some lava tubes around here.
There was a local Vietnam Vet pilot and painter, Chuck, who told us about McCloud waterfalls, and what a great view it was there. We were lucky to find a spot at Fowler’s Campground that fit our rig, it’s usually reservation only but we were early enough in the camping season. Thank you!
Swimming hole near the campground. Still too cold! So cold it hurts.
Lots of beautiful waters to kayak. I wish I had one.
So our RV trip $833 just for RV — not including groceries, gas for the SUV, park tickets, etc..
Of the $833
- $464 for gas at approx $5.40 / gal and 8 MPG
- $369 for campground costs
- Roughly 1.5 tank of gas for our toad SUB, ~20 gal, approx $108
- Groceries and meals ~$40 / day, 15 nights ~$600
Total cost is around $1541
Works out to be ~$100/day which is decent!
Totally would come back to McCloud, Lake Siskiyou, Mt Shasta, Redding, Lassen!
- Don’t over plan your trip. Allow time and space for surprises and moments to enjoy along the way. If you are too rigid in planning, you’ll lose the ability to adapt to unexpected opportunities. All plans are made on incomplete, partial information.
- Don’t drive too much each day. For us, it’s no more than 6 hours day, usually 2–3. It’ll seriously burn out and feel tiring, making the trip experience worse.
- Don’t move camp too often. Last year before getting a toad vehicle, we would move every day because we had no “home base”. That was tiring, because it felt like we were passing through, and not soaking in the local experience. Plan to stay in a place 3 to 6 days.
- Carry paper maps and info. Don’t expect internet and battery access while hiking out.