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Old 03-22-2018, 09:05 PM   #1
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California Highway 395. Your thoughts...

In June we are going to be spending three weeks in the Bambi along 395 between Lake Tahoe and Big Pine. Got any ideas? The funkier the better for our 10-year-old boy.
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Old 03-22-2018, 09:45 PM   #2
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We liked Keough's Hot Springs just north of Big Pine. It's far enough off of 395 that you can't hear the traffic. It has a nice old fashioned resort feel with hot pools, snack bars, and it's convenient for anything you want to do in the area.
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Old 03-23-2018, 12:18 AM   #3
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We liked Keough's Hot Springs just north of Big Pine. It's far enough off of 395 that you can't hear the traffic. It has a nice old fashioned resort feel with hot pools, snack bars, and it's convenient for anything you want to do in the area.
How was the cell phone signal at Keough's (and what carrier do you use)? Thanks!
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Old 03-23-2018, 08:39 AM   #4
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I had to drive a (very) short way back down towards 395 to get a signal, but it was fine once I got down there. I have Verizon.
Keough's only has water and electric hookups (and dry camping spots) but the bathrooms and showers are easy enough to deal with that that's not an issue.
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Old 03-23-2018, 09:07 AM   #5
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Leave Your Cell At Home

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Originally Posted by rjbrown99 View Post
How was the cell phone signal at Keough's (and what carrier do you use)? Thanks!
I know cell phones are important conveniences, we don't turn ours on when we're camping. We also have not really figured out the two TVs and DVD player in our 28' Serenity. We've rediscovered board games, cribbage and books. We can't wait for it to warm up again so we can get back to real relaxation. JMHO.
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Old 03-23-2018, 09:27 AM   #6
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Consider traveling a few more miles south to see the town of Lone Pine, they have an amazing western film museum, not to mention that hundreds of movies have been filmed in the areas surrounding hills. Well worth the trip even if it is a day excursion out of Big Pine.
Verizon Wireless works the best in this part of the country.
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Old 03-23-2018, 09:45 AM   #7
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The ghost town of Bodie and the maybe Manzanar National Historic site.
Do some reading ahead to be sure that Manzanar is appropriate for your 10 year old.

Its an emotionally "heavy" place. We were very moved to learn more about this dark time in our history.
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Old 03-23-2018, 09:52 AM   #8
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Devils Postpile near Mammoth mountain, Bristlecone pine forest, Mono Lake, Bodie. Look them up, you will be amazed at each one. All just off 395. If looking for a great day hike, check out Glacier lodge area. Last I heard lodge burned down, but there is camping there. Many turquoise lakes a day hike away, mule rides, Lon Chaney’s cabin, now a ranger station.
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Old 03-23-2018, 09:59 AM   #9
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Mammoth Lakes!!! You can rent Kayak, row boats, canoes on the lakes. Fabulous hiking! Rent mountain bikes and ride the ski mountain! Hiking and boating are all dog friendly too.

Edit: hasn’t been a great year for snow, but u can usually ski/board until July 4 at Mammoth.
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Old 03-23-2018, 10:12 AM   #10
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Might consider a day trip to Panamint Valley and Death Valley. Scotty’s Castle, and lots of cool scenery there.
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Old 03-23-2018, 10:48 AM   #11
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Meadowcliff KOA near topaz lake in Coleville, CA is a great place to stay, it has a breakfast & lunch next door. Lots to explore. we stay there at least twice a year. http://www.meadowcliff.com/resortmap.html

Willowsprings is another great little mom & pop campground near Bodie and Bridgeport and Mono Lake. It is right near the top of Conway summit very close to the road to Bodie. Also lots to see and do. We stay here at least once a year. http://willowspringsbridgeport.com/to_do.php

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Old 03-23-2018, 11:12 AM   #12
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Laws museum outside og Bishop on highway 6. An old western style town with railroad cars etc. Western movies have been filmed here. Another vote for Lone Pine Film Museum and Manzanar Relocation camp. You will recognize the Alabama Hills in many of the old westerns.
Mount Whitney fish hatchery near Independence. The grounds are a nice place for a picnic. The hatchery is closed due to an El Nino flood years back, but the main pond is maintained by Friends of the Hatchery. You can feed the six pound trout while you relax. Plenty of shade also. http://mtwhitneyfishhatchery.org/
I would avoid Death Valley any time after about April unless you enjoy hot weather. Scotty's Castle is still closed I believe due to flood damage.
Around Lee Vining you can visit Mono Lake Visitors Center. Also, you can take a day trip to Yosemite's Toulamee Meadows via Tioga Pass. I would not tow over Tioga Pass! Trailers are not recommended. About a mile off 395 on Tioga Pass Rd (SR120). grab something to eat at the Whoa Nellie Deli located inside the Mobil station. The place is always busy. It has inside and outside seating. I stay at the Mono Vista RV Park in Lee Vining. Get your reservation ASAP if you consider staying there.
Already mentioned Bodie Ghost Town State Park is interesting. The road is paved now except for the last mile.
Have a great trip.
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Old 03-23-2018, 11:26 AM   #13
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When we visit the 395 area, I'm going to do some fly fishing. It's an area that comes up over and over as premium fishing water. Upper Owens is between Bishop and Big Pine; East Walker is above Bridgeport; and Hot Creek is near the 108/395 junction. The hot water pools at Hot Creek might be interesting to the kids if fishing does not trip their trigger.

Hard to visit 395 without a trip accross 120 at Lee Vining over to YNP. If the Meadows is open you might consider a day trip. The pass was slow to open this year, so check before you go. (edit - Better info above in Greenflag's post)

At least one poster recommended June Lake. Never been there, but the area sounds like a visit worth planning.

We like 395 a lot. Bet you will too. Enjoy the trip. Pat
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Old 03-23-2018, 11:28 AM   #14
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Some favorite places

395 is my favorite highway in California. Iíll suggest that your 10-year old might love Bodieóit was a huge hit with my son when he was that same age. One of our favorite campsites is Silver Lake, a USFS facility along the June Lake Loop. I would also highly recommend the Laws Railroad Museum, previously mentioned. Same appeal as Bodie, but the museum also runs their restored Death Valley Railway rail motor car for short trips on about a mile of 3-foot gauge track. Think itís a weekends only operation. A previous poster mentioned a side-trip to Death Valley...Scottyís Castle is closed due to flood damage and wonít reopen until next year at the earliest. When you drive 395 through places like Lone Pine and Bishop, you might tell your son that this is what cross-country highway trips looked like before interstate highways.
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