McGill Campground and Group Campground is a first-come-first-served campground located in the Los Padres National Forest. The 78-site campground is easily accessible, paved, and accommodates tents, trailers, and RVs. It also features two group campsites that together can hold up to 140 people and 20 vehicles. Nestled among lush evergreens and surrounded by mountain views, it is the ultimate wilderness getaway. The campground is dog-friendly so make sure to pack some dog waste bags and clean up after your fur-ball. Keep your pooch leashed throughout your stay and in sight at all times.
The campsites are well-shaded and well spaced out, which allows each family or group to enjoy their personal space and outdoor freedom comfortably. All the individual campsites have their own fire rings and picnic tables, while each group site features a central barbeque that is perfect for late-night hot dogs and smores. The campgrounds are also equipped with benches, vault toilets, and relatively good cell phone reception. Although, with so many breathtaking viewpoints around, you will likely not even be tempted by your phone’s screen throughout your stay.
Since the campground is located at an elevation of approximately 7,300 feet, evenings and nights can get chilly. Make sure to pack warm clothing and blankets, even in the summer, to keep yourself nice and toasty. Packing enough water for the entire trip is also a must since there is no running water. In case you do run out, there is a general store 10 miles away from the campground.
Wake up to the sound of the booming hummingbird population, hike your way through miles of scenic trails running through the conifer forest of Los Padres -- from the McGill Hiking Trail starting directly at the campground to the nearby Exploration Trail that is fully paved -- and end your night by falling asleep under the starlit night sky after some stargazing.