Humboldt Redwoods’ environmental campgrounds require a short walk to your site and don’t have showers or flush toilets, but in exchange they provide a much more peaceful, natural experience than the drive-in campgrounds. It’s like a backpacking camp but you don't need a backpack.
The two camps are on Bull Creek about a mile past the end of the old-growth redwoods. Each camp has an outhouse and non-potable water, and each site has a picnic table, fire ring, and food locker. The sites are really far apart and offer a lot of privacy. There are no showers or flush toilets, although you could always drive 5 minutes down the road to Albee Creek Campground.
A drawback of the environmental camps is that they’re a bit of a walk from the closest old-growth redwood trails: Hamilton Barn is about a mile from the old growth, Baxter about two miles. There’s a trail that follows Bull Creek to the old growth (requiring a lot of wading through the creek), but especially from Baxter Camp it makes more sense to just drive to the Grasshopper Multi-Use Trail trailhead.
Each camp has its own parking area accessed by by a dirt road with a locked gate. You have to check in at one of the drive-in campgrounds to get the combination to the gate.
The camps are open from May through September. The cost is $20/night. Reservations are only available from Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend
Baxter is the nicer of the two camps; it’s more shady with lusher, nicer-looking woods.
Site 1 is in the deep shade of a very open, attractive grove of small redwoods. It’s only 60 yards from the parking area, making it practically a drive-in site. The site is huge, with plenty of space for tents. Although the redwoods are clearly second-growth, there aren’t any stumps or other obvious signs that this area has been logged.
Site 2 is about 200 yards from the parking area. It’s also in the redwoods, but it’s in a much less open area at the edge of the woods, so it’s not quite as attractive as site 1. On the other hand, it’s right on Bull Creek, and there’s a little trail that leads about 10 yards from the campsite to the creek.
Site 3 is in a heavily-logged redwood grove; huge stumps and cut logs surround the site. However, it’s big, level, and close to the parking area.
Site 4 is at the edge of a second-growth redwood grove, about 150 yards from the parking area. It doesn't have a lot of level space, but it does have a lot of slightly sloped space on a hillside. The site is under the redwoods with a lot of sunlight streaming in from the neighboring meadow. The Homestead Trail (which is little-used, but mainly intended for equestrians) runs along the edge of the site; from the site you can easily step onto the trail. It’s about a mile to Albee Creek Campground and the beginning of the old-growth redwoods.
Site 5 is in an open meadow next to Bull Creek. A line of small trees provides some shade. It’s a 250 yard walk from the parking area; the trail is a little rough and not good if you want to bring rolling luggage (which a lot of people do). The site itself is rather lumpy and not super level.
© 2019 David Baselt