Navigating Tranquility: Your Guide to Garden Point & Madrone Cove Campgrounds

Embark on a secluded adventure amidst the breathtaking landscapes of New Bullards Bar Reservoir’s Garden Point and Madrone Cove Campgrounds. Nestled on the serene shoreline, these boat-in campgrounds offer a unique escape, accessible only by boat. Operated by Tahoe National Forest, these campgrounds provide an unparalleled camping experience, and this guide is here to ensure you make the most of it.

Map & Reservations

Garden Point Boat-in Campground

Madrone Cove Boat-in Campground

Top Tips for First-Time Campers

  • Boat-In Access Only: Remember, both Garden Point and Madrone Cove Campgrounds are exclusively accessible by boat. Plan your boat trip carefully, ensuring you have all necessary supplies, and savor the excitement of camping near your boat for convenient access to the water.
  • Double the Pleasure: At Garden Point Campground, consider the option of double sites for a more spacious and communal camping experience. These sites can be combined to accommodate larger groups or those seeking extra privacy in nature’s embrace.
  • Self-Sufficiency Essentials: Bring essential supplies, including sufficient water, as there is no potable water at either campground. Additionally, practice Leave No Trace principles by packing out all garbage, leaving the natural beauty of the campgrounds undisturbed.
  • Reservation Wisdom: If you prefer a specific site or plan to visit during peak times, take advantage of the reservation system. Reservations can be made up to 6 months in advance, allowing you to secure your spot and streamline your camping experience.
  • Leashed Companions: If you’re camping with furry friends, ensure they are on a leash and always attended. During the night, pets must be in a tent or vehicle, adhering to regulations while ensuring a peaceful coexistence with the surrounding wildlife.

Top Strategies and Tactics for Maximum Camping Enjoyment

  • Ideal Camping Season: Optimal camping conditions prevail from mid-April through mid-October. Choose the late spring and summer months for milder weather, providing an ideal backdrop for swimming, waterskiing, and other water activities.
  • Sunset Arrival: Arrive in the late afternoon to witness the mesmerizing sunset over New Bullards Bar Reservoir. Setting up camp in the warm glow of the sinking sun adds a touch of magic to your camping experience.
  • Rustic Seclusion: Revel in the rustic charm of these boat-in campgrounds, offering a more secluded camping experience away from the crowds. Enjoy the privacy and tranquility that Garden Point and Madrone Cove provide for a serene escape.
  • Lake Exploration: Take advantage of the boat-in access to explore the various attractions of New Bullards Bar Reservoir. From wakeboarding and waterskiing to fishing for Kokanee salmon, the lake offers diverse activities to suit every camper’s preference.
  • Trail Exploration: Venture beyond the campgrounds and hike the local trails, immersing yourself in the natural beauty of the surrounding area. The Bullards Bar Trail is a great starting point for those seeking an on-foot exploration of the reservoir’s picturesque landscapes.

Recommendations on Camping Gear for an Optimal Experience

  • Portable Food Storage: As bears inhabit the area, use bear-proof storage lockers for food and similar items. These storage solutions not only ensure camper safety but also contribute to the preservation of the natural environment.
  • Comfortable Camp Setup: Pack comfortable camping gear, including sleeping essentials and chairs, to enhance your relaxation by the fire. A cozy camp setup adds to the overall enjoyment of your stay at Garden Point or Madrone Cove.
  • Local Firewood: Obtain firewood locally to prevent the spread of harmful insects. Supporting local sources contributes to the health of the forest ecosystem and aligns with responsible camping practices.
  • Leash and Bear Awareness: Keep dogs on a leash and always attended, following campground regulations. Additionally, practice bear awareness and adhere to guidelines to minimize potential conflicts and protect the wildlife.
  • Explore Our Gearlist: For precise gear recommendations on camp cooking, sleeping systems, overlanding setups, backpacks, and clothing tailored for boat-in camping, explore our gearlist account. Discover the exact gear we use to optimize our camping experiences.

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.

Embark on an unforgettable journey to Garden Point and Madrone Cove Campgrounds at New Bullards Bar Reservoir. With these tips, strategies, and gear recommendations, your boat-in camping adventure promises to be a tranquil exploration of nature’s wonders. As you navigate the waterways and soak in the beauty of the reservoir, let the seclusion of these campgrounds be the backdrop to your idyllic outdoor getaway.