Camping on the Lake Cachuma Reservoir in the Santa Ynez Valley

Anne Bonfert

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The lakekatie Bonilla/ Unsplash

As we are approaching the holiday season it is time to plan and book your vacation. Another amazing nature adventure can be experienced in Santa Barbara County in California. The Cachuma Lake in the Santa Ynez Valley is a popular destination for adventure lovers, hikers, and campers alike.

The reservoir located in the Santa Ynez Valley was created by building the Bradbury dam in 1953. The artificial lake has varying water levels throughout the seasons and years. Depending on the rainfall the area and the mountains receive the dam is flowing over or can be as low as 10 percent of its capacity.

The recreation area around the lake has various activities to offer and campgrounds available for overnight stays. Countless hiking trails lead through the mountains surrounding the lake and kayak and boat rentals are available onshore.

Fishing is another popular activity and fish like bass, rainbow trout, and others are popular to be pulled out. Swimming is not allowed in the lake but swimming pools are available for swimming activities.

Cachuma Lake Campgrounds have a huge variety of campsites throughout the park. In total, one can choose from over 400 campsites. Many of those are premium campsites located right on the waterfront. Amenities available at the campsites include drinking water, flush toilets and hot showers, laundry facilities, and a dump station. Furthermore, can you find playgrounds, a general store, a nature center, a swimming pool, and trailer storage.

For those not having a van or trailer and not being interested in staying in a tent, a few Yurts are available which makes the camping experience more comfortable. Yurts can sleep up to 5 or 6 people and cost between 65$ and 90$ per night.

At all of the Cachuma Lake Campgrounds, is a minimum stay of 2-nights on Friday and Saturday and a minimum of a 3-night stay on holiday weekends. Being one of Santa Barbara County's most popular recreation areas a pre-booking is mandatory if you don't want to end up without a site for the night.

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I am a traveler. Photographer. Writer. Teacher. Skydiving instructor. Adventure enthusiast. Nature lover. And fell in love with the African continent. My stories go around travel, nature and all kinds of adventurous activities.

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