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Idyllwild Thousand Trails

24400 Canyon Trail Drive
Idyllwild, CA 92549

Ranger Station: (951) 659-4137


Verizon Internet card works reliably here, but the park internet not so good, but does work

Super Walmart 30 miles away in San Jacinto

GO Through Banning when you drive up or down, don’t go through Palm Desert route if you are over 30′ and don’t want to hold up traffic for 2 hours, we scouted it out, not good for large RV’s or new drivers, Banning is mild in comparison.

Legal Notes

Check legal RV limits for this highway – Riverside San Bernardina county Legal RV Map

RV Restrictions for all California – know your length limits before you tread in California. In California your RV weight limit is  20,500 pounds on any one axle. National weight code for Motorhomes on the Interstates: U.S. Code, Title 23, Section 127 allows buses and motorhomes a maximum single-axle weight of 24,000.

California Weigh Station or scales are for commercial vehicles and rental trucks, RV’s only have to stop if flagged down somehow.

California Rest areas allow parking for eight hours, some have dump stations.

Does California require I have a special license to drive an RV? Your state drivers license if it allows you to drive you RV is good in California for same type of RV use as permitted to you in your state. California drivers need an endorsement and meet medical requirements.

Winter time driving and chain requirement in California. – Please refer to this document in the section labled RV’s they say they may require both out and inner duals to be chained together under some circumstances. Use the document in the link above to get all the details. Too complicated for my brain, as my CPU is out of date, and I am shy on memory.

California Tolls suck but they are the law, and this is how you deal with them if you are wealthy enough to California. Gees with all these fees, it’s no wonder every one is said to be on government assistance.

Everyone needs fuel – List of California Truck Stops – Note: Riverside, Barstow and Palm Springs areas have the closest known truck stops to this park.

Points of Interest:


There are four important things to know about this park:

1. The road from Banning we are told is the best road to idyllwild, the road is narrow, steep, and windy. There is a sign at the bottom stating that rigs over 30′ in length are not recommended. We were 32′ on the RV and 53′ with the car attached, we drove the road slowly and used every turn out for passers by and got here with no trouble. The Banning to hwy 243 exit off I-10 are noteable as well, our RV scraped bottom by the school as the drainage dip was too steep for or towing system.

2. There are no sewer hookups in the park available to members without an annual site lease, in the summer months Memorial day to labor day there is a fee based honey wagon.

3. The campsites are not level, 90% of them we would not have been able to get the rig into due to clearance issues, and many others were just too tight.

4.  If you need full hookups, good level sites, and do not like steep grades, there are other parks more suitable to you. One can get a big rig in here, but it takes skill and patients, but the park in our minds worth the trouble.

Putting the important notes aside, the scenery here is great, and this park is probably a welcome relief from the summer heat, for a weekend outing; the park is  great, especially if you use a cabin, or have a leased site so the RV does not have to be drug up here each time. Those of us who are just passing through should stay down in the valley some place, there is a KOA at the bottom of the hill in Banning or another TT park in Palm Dessert just a few miles up I-10. It is a considerable effort to get parking up here with the RV, especially if the RV is over 30′

Park Pictures:

Road to heaven is narrow

Road out of banning

Leads through the clouds

clouds in roadway

Then you’re really high

Reached the top of Idyllwild hwy

Turn at the fire department, drive up a road that looks like it is going no where, then turn left and drive some more, the park is actually at the end of the street with all the houses.

Idyllwild park entrance

Playground, leans hard to the right, just like me.

Play equipment Idyllwild

Nice little park store, we can’t see it this trip as it is only open weekends until mid may.

Community room

Community room

Nice room in the lodge.

rustic bench

Adult area up stairs to get away from high needs young people

11 10 9

Getaway cabins

Cabins in the woods


Laundry room, and showers

laundry buillding

Laundry. There are other laundry rooms in the park, but all closed for the winter. This room has 2 washers, 2 dryers, and every thing works well.  No Bleach or Formaldehyde allowed.

Laundry 16

Another view of a getaway cabin, wish it were my house.


Main park road

road in Idyllwild

Nice Pool. It looks like a real resort area in here.


Hot tub is closed for winter. This is a real shame, nothing beats sitting in a bubbling hot tub catching snow flakes on the tongue all night long by yourself, or ten of your best friends.

hot tub

Rest rooms and laundry room, closed right now. Looks like the place Billy the Kid shot Henry Hill when it was still a tavern. ref:(Young Guns”) movie probably should not hang here if you have a viscous bounty hunter on your tail. Take it from Henry, the bathroom is bad luck!

Rest rooms and laundry room, closed right now.

What a wonderful view of the pool. Summer has to be awesome here

Lonely poor

A more noble play ground stands straight and tall

play structure

27 28 29

Horse shoes


Full hookups, but only for annual leased members

Sewer site Idyllwild

Horse area, local company rents horse rides

tack room

Horse Corral

Idyllwild corral

These are protected, but there is a sign in the community center that says this variety is especially venomous and is often fatal to humans and animals. Look before stepping, use a flashlight at night, and look before sitting or grabbing something. Get away from the snake and get the ranger, he will remove it. Glad I am not a ranger, I hate snakes!



Snow in mid April


A site

camp site

Don’t bother bringing bikes, they are allowed, but lots of hills that can be dangerous to kids. People get nervous, and complain to the rangers.



Big pine cones

Giant pine cone


They came off this tree. The trees are are really neat here. Don’t stand under the tree

Pine tree

Raised indoor fire pit, can be rented for $15

Fire pit


Little amphitheater, they do church here on Sundays. If you like the light, camp in site 226, the lights are on all the time, and keep the RV well lit. We prefer darkness, and camped here in this site accidentally.



Again, this campground is nice, it is just a tough drive up,  30′ plus rigs do make it in, but they are a menace to traffic, and may not be officially legal since the signs at the bottom of the hill state vehicles over 30′ not advised. I am at 34′ and do not plan to return in this rig due to the fact that other options exist in the area.

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