Discovering Tranquility: Iris Meadow Campground in the Eastern Sierra

Iris Meadow Campground, located along Rock Creek Road in the Southern Eastern Sierra, stands as a serene oasis for outdoor enthusiasts seeking a tranquil escape amidst nature’s splendor. Surrounded by towering aspens, majestic pines, and graceful willows, this campground offers a picturesque retreat just 4 miles west of Highway 395 at Toms Place. With a history rooted in quietude and the vibrant bloom of wildflowers, Iris Meadow beckons campers with its 14 first-come, first-served sites, each a gateway to the breathtaking beauty of Rock Creek and the nearby Little Lakes Valley.

Map & Reservations

Situated at an elevation of 8,300 feet, Iris Meadow Campground invites visitors to explore the wonders of Rock Creek Lake while indulging in a variety of outdoor activities such as fishing, boating, and hiking. Whether you’re casting a line into the crystal-clear waters of Rock Creek or embarking on a scenic hike through the pristine wilderness of Little Lakes Valley, Iris Meadow offers the perfect setting for outdoor adventure in the heart of the Eastern Sierra.

For first-time campers venturing into the realm of Iris Meadow, a few strategic tips can enhance the camping experience. Arriving early is key, allowing campers to secure their ideal spot amidst the tranquil meadow and along the banks of Rock Creek. Embracing the pet-friendly atmosphere of the campground while respecting leash requirements ensures a harmonious environment for all campers and their furry companions. With an extended stay limit of 7 days, visitors have ample time to explore the diverse attractions of the area, from the inviting waters of Crowley Lake to the scenic trails of Little Lakes Valley.

To further enhance the camping experience, strategic tactics and essential gear recommendations can prove invaluable. Starting the day with breakfast at Rock Creek Lodge offers a delightful dining experience against the stunning backdrop of the Sierra Nevada. Fishing enthusiasts can embark on exciting escapades to nearby lakes such as Convict Lake and Crowley Lake, while those craving baked delights can indulge in treats from McGee Creek Lodge. Scenic hiking trails leading to destinations like Little Lakes Valley and Hilton Lakes promise breathtaking landscapes and memorable adventures.

Equipping oneself with essential camping gear such as bear-proof storage lockers, comfortable camping essentials, and hydration supplies ensures a secure and enjoyable camping experience in the Eastern Sierra. For pet owners, bringing along necessities like leashes and water bowls ensures the comfort and well-being of furry companions throughout the camping adventure.

In conclusion, Iris Meadow Campground offers a sanctuary for outdoor enthusiasts seeking solace amidst nature’s beauty. With strategic tips, essential gear recommendations, and a spirit of adventure, visitors can embark on a memorable camping journey in the captivating landscapes of the Southern Eastern Sierra.

Top Tips for Campers Camping Here for the First Time

  • Arrive Early: Given the first-come, first-served nature of the campsites, arriving early ensures securing the ideal spot amidst the picturesque meadow and along Rock Creek.
  • Pet-Friendly Vibes: Embrace the pet-friendly atmosphere but remember to keep furry companions on a leash, respecting the tranquil environment and fellow campers.
  • Extended Stay: Maximize your stay to 7 days, allowing ample time to explore the diverse attractions, from the nearby Crowley Lake to the scenic trails of Little Lakes Valley.
  • Seasonal Timing: Aim for a visit between late May and early September to take advantage of favorable weather conditions, allowing you to relish the full spectrum of outdoor activities.
  • Explore Nearby Lakes: Extend your adventure beyond Rock Creek by exploring the neighboring lakes, including the pristine Crowley Lake and the inviting Rock Creek Lake.

Top Strategies and Tactics for an Enhanced Camping Experience

  • Morning Serenity: Start your day with breakfast at Rock Creek Lodge, offering a delightful dining experience from 8 AM to 10 AM against the stunning backdrop of the Sierra Nevada.
  • Fishing Escapades: Embark on fishing escapades to Convict Lake, Rock Creek Lake, and Crowley Lake, reveling in the abundance of trout and the tranquil ambiance of the Eastern Sierra waters.
  • Bakery Indulgence: Treat yourself to baked goodies and satisfying meals at McGee Creek Lodge, a perfect stop on your way out for a delightful culinary experience.
  • Scenic Hiking Trails: Immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscapes by hiking the trails leading to Little Lakes Valley, Hilton Lakes, and other John Muir Wilderness destinations.
  • Beach Day at Rock Creek Lake: Enjoy a leisurely day at Rock Creek Lake’s beach area, perfect for swimming and basking in the natural beauty of the surrounding scenery.

Recommendations on Essential Camping Gear

  • Bear-Proof Storage: Equip yourself with bear-proof food storage lockers to ensure a secure camping experience while respecting the natural habitat of the area.
  • Comfortable Camping Gear: Pack comfortable camping essentials, including picnic table-friendly cookware, reliable sleeping gear, and layered clothing suitable for varying temperatures.
  • Hydration Essentials: Given the high elevation, stay well-hydrated with a supply of tap water available at the campground, ensuring you’re prepared for the demands of outdoor exploration.
  • Pet Necessities: For pet owners, bring essentials like a leash, water bowls, and comfortable bedding to ensure your pets are at ease during the camping adventure.
  • Explore Our Gearlist: Dive into our gearlist account for specific recommendations on camp cooking, sleeping systems, overlanding setups, backpacks, and clothing, guaranteeing a well-prepared and enjoyable camping experience.

Check out our Gearlist for the gear we use for trips like this

Our Gearlist account lists all of the gear we use. Discover our top picks, where to snag them, and stay informed with our regular updates.


Iris Meadow Campground encapsulates the essence of tranquility and adventure in the heart of the Eastern Sierra. As campers bid farewell to this picturesque retreat, they carry with them cherished memories of serene meadows, crystal-clear waters, and towering mountain vistas. Whether it’s the gentle rustle of aspens, the vibrant hues of wildflowers, or the invigorating scent of pine, Iris Meadow leaves an indelible mark on all who visit.

For those venturing into Iris Meadow for the first time, the experience is one of discovery and wonder. The strategic tips provided, from arriving early to securing the perfect campsite to embracing the pet-friendly atmosphere while respecting campground regulations, ensure a seamless and enjoyable stay. With an extended stay limit allowing for ample exploration, campers have the opportunity to immerse themselves fully in the natural splendor of the Eastern Sierra.

Throughout their stay, campers are met with a wealth of outdoor activities, each offering its own unique allure. Whether it’s casting a line into the glistening waters of Rock Creek, embarking on a scenic hike through Little Lakes Valley, or indulging in baked delights at McGee Creek Lodge, there’s no shortage of adventure to be had. And as the day draws to a close, campers can gather around crackling campfires, sharing stories and laughter under the star-studded sky.

The campground’s proximity to a myriad of attractions, from Crowley Lake to Convict Lake, further enhances the camping experience, offering endless opportunities for exploration and adventure. And with essential gear recommendations ensuring campers are well-equipped for their outdoor pursuits, every moment spent in Iris Meadow is one of comfort and enjoyment.

But perhaps the most lasting impression of Iris Meadow is the sense of peace and rejuvenation it instills in its visitors. Amidst the hustle and bustle of everyday life, this tranquil retreat serves as a sanctuary for weary souls, offering a respite from the chaos of the modern world. Here, amidst the towering peaks and whispering pines, campers find solace, inspiration, and a renewed appreciation for the beauty of the natural world.

As campers bid adieu to Iris Meadow Campground, they carry with them not only memories of scenic landscapes and outdoor adventures but also a deep sense of gratitude for the opportunity to connect with nature in its purest form. And though their time in this idyllic oasis may be fleeting, the impact of their experience will last a lifetime, serving as a reminder of the beauty and wonder that await in the great outdoors.