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Ponderosa  Thousand Trails

7291 Hwy. 49 Lotus, Ca. 95651

Ranger Station: (530) 642-5830 ext. 6

Internet note:

Family lodge has internet that works well when it is working, some sites can connect to the lodge internet. We have not recently tested cell service at this park.

Legal Notes

Check legal RV limits for this highway –  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 Too complicated for my brain, as my CPU is out of date, and I am shy on memory.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

Points of Interest:

The American River

Marshall Gold State Park – Gold Discovery village (1 Mile)

Wakamatsu Tea and Silk Colony Farm – 272-acre Gold Hill Ranch, located just a few miles from where gold was discovered in Coloma (6 Miles)

Eldorado County Historical Museum – Museum and historical western railroad (9 Miles)

Gold Bug Mine – My first experience with claustrophobia, but what an education (10 Miles)

Apple Hill – Great fun in September (15 Miles)

Directory of places – you and your dog will enjoy. Mileage may vary based on the places you choose from this list.


Park Description

Ponderosa Thousand Trails is on the American River. There are about six sites that are right on the river and about 8 more that are across the driveway from the river and have an unobstructed view of the river, these sites are all 50 amp sites and have an additional fee. There are about 12 Sewer sites in Section “B” by the family lodge. The rest of the sites are electric and water only. There is no mini golf, no laundry facilities, no adult lodge. The river, and the scenery are what one really comes to this park for.

Park Pictures

Park Store and offices on the right as you enter the park. 

Park store

Entrance to the park

Ponderosa Thousand Trails Entrance

This is the first road on the right after you enter the park. The road goes between the back of the store (The white building) and a shop (The brown building). The road is also the exit from the park, and has the Dump Station in the exit gate. When using the dump station, one is forced to block the exit.  We found some members get rather contentious when forced to wait for another member to evacuate two hundred gallons of liquid and semi solid waste. It would seem that if one has to wait 5 minutes for the other member to dump, that it would not be a big deal. What if the guy is late to Sunday morning bridge club and he is sitting in his car behind six rigs all in line to dump. There is no way, they can move and let him through, so he has to wait. The only real solution would be for him to move his bridge club to Ponderosa Thousand Trails I guess.

Ponderosa dump station



Getaway Cabin

Ponderosa Thousand Trails Getaway Cabin rustic in nature.

Rental trailers.

If you want to rv, but don’t have one, this could be an option.

Inner roads

Ponderosa Thousand Trails roads

Camp sites

shaded camp site

Family lodge

LodgePool Table TV Room Wet Bar  Computer room  fooze ball

Sites on the hill just to the left of the ranger station. The sites are on the edge of Hwy 49 and require the ability to turn off your hearing aids. There are nice quiet sites in the loops down the hill from the family lodge.

 sites along hwy 49

One of Two cabinscabin in the woods


 Pool With Umbrellas Swimming pool

Outdoor pool shower with a gauge of some kind on top. I forgot my glasses, so you will have to look for yourself. 31

Road to the river and some lower sites

river road

American River

American River

Dog Park

Dog Park

River view 50A sites!  Get down here, unless of course you are suffering from phengophobia or are dealing with Potamophobia; in which case I will be happy to occupy a river site so you do no have to.River view sites

Enjoy Ponderosa Thousand Trails – Lotus, Ca.


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