Donner Memorial State Park Campground: A Lakeside Haven in the Sierra Nevada

Situated on the shores of Donner Lake, Donner Memorial State Park Campground stands as one of California’s premier camping destinations. With 154 campsites, offering a mix of RV, trailer, and tent-friendly options, the campground provides an excellent base for exploring the region’s rich history and enjoying the recreational opportunities surrounding the picturesque lake. From swimming and fishing to boating and paddleboarding, Donner Lake offers a myriad of activities for visitors of all ages.

Map & Reservations

Top Tips for Campers Camping Here the First Time

  • Reserve your favorite spot: Take advantage of the reservation system to secure a spot at this popular campground, especially during peak season. Donner Memorial State Park Campground has 154 sites, including tent-only spaces.
  • Explore the High Sierra Crossing Museum: Immerse yourself in the history of Native Americans, pioneers, and the transcontinental railroad at the nearby High Sierra Crossing Museum, offering informative exhibits.
  • Accessible sites for added convenience: If you have specific accessibility needs, consider choosing one of the designated accessible sites to enhance your camping experience.
  • Enjoy water activities: Donner Lake is a haven for water enthusiasts. Engage in swimming, fishing, boating, waterskiing, paddleboarding, and more, making the most of the beautiful surroundings.

Top Strategies and Tactics to Get the Most Out of Camping Here

  • Optimal camping season: Plan your visit during the camping season, which typically runs from late May to early October, weather permitting, for the best outdoor experience.
  • Day trips to nearby attractions: Take short drives to explore the High Sierra Crossing Museum, hike the Nature Trail, visit historical monuments, and venture to nearby Lake Tahoe for a comprehensive outdoor adventure.
  • Participate in interpretive programs: Enhance your understanding of the region’s history and natural features by joining interpretive programs offered at the park.
  • Drive up Donner Pass: Explore the scenic surroundings by driving up Donner Pass, providing stunning views of the area.
  • Engage in Junior Rangers program: If you’re camping with children, encourage them to participate in the Junior Rangers program for an educational and entertaining experience.

Recommendations on Camping Gear

  • Portable water gear: Given the variety of water activities available, bring portable gear for swimming, paddleboarding, and boating to make the most of Donner Lake.
  • Camping essentials: Pack camping essentials, including a tent, sleeping bags, and cooking gear, for a comfortable and enjoyable stay.
  • Outdoor recreation gear: Depending on your interests, bring gear for fishing, hiking, and exploring the nearby trails and attractions.
  • Binoculars for birdwatching: Enhance your camping experience by bringing binoculars for birdwatching, especially around the lakeside area.
  • Explore our gearlist: Check our gearlist account for specific recommendations on camping essentials to optimize your stay at Donner Memorial State Park Campground.

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.

Nestled in the Sierra Nevada, Donner Memorial State Park Campground beckons campers with its serene lakeside setting and a wealth of outdoor activities. Follow the provided tips, explore the region’s history, and make the most of your stay at this beautiful lakeside haven.