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Author Topic: Eastern Sierra Owens River  (Read 782 times)

Endlesssummer

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Eastern Sierra Owens River
« on: December 08, 2020, 11:26:52 PM »
Hello
We are thinking about going to Browns Campground at the Owens River around opening day next year.
Reservation are available after April 1st. Any advise from those that have been there? Best camp site etc. We will be in our motorhome with no toad so will be confined to that specific site.
Thanks
2007 Fleetwood Jamboree 31M

Old_Crow

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2020, 06:57:14 AM »
I'm going to be managing the 14 Forest Service campgrounds up Rock Creek Canyon, Mcgee Creek, and Convict Lake next year for Recreation Resource Management. 
In October we were out there to check out the area and drove past that Owens River campground. 
Might want to check it out on Google Earth...not a lot of shade(or anything else)out there.  I think I'd go to the Pleasant Valley campground, closer to Bishop.  Seems like a much nicer campground.
Wally Crow
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Lynx0849

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2020, 03:56:00 PM »
Hello
We are thinking about going to Browns Campground at the Owens River around opening day next year.
Reservation are available after April 1st. Any advise from those that have been there? Best camp site etc. We will be in our motorhome with no toad so will be confined to that specific site.
Thanks

Hmm, that brings up a question on opening days. Are campgrounds really ready on day one? I have no experience on this but have booked activities on day 2 and discovered that day 1 didn’t happen and day 2 is late too.
Rob & Deryl, Nettle & Tigger
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Tom

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2020, 06:15:55 PM »
Browns is my all-time favorite campground (location). First went there before there was a campground and folks were boondocking streamside. Here's one of my reports of being at Browns. Early in the year, they don't open the entire campground but, when we were there in April, we were almost alone, and we were camped streamside. See this topic and attached pics.

Another of my reports of the Eastern Sierras.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2020, 01:54:09 PM by Tom »
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garyb1st

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2020, 07:43:12 PM »
Haven't stayed there but drove through the campground area about 2 years ago.  Looks like a popular spot for fishing.  Other than that, not sure what you're getting for the price.  IIRC it was about $30-35.00 a night for a grass site with very few amenities.   
Gary B1st

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Tom

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2020, 08:25:06 PM »
Quote from: garyb1st
... not sure what you're getting for the price.

Apart from the fishing, there are great views of Mammoth, and it's not far to numerous other local sights.If you prefer a concrete jungle, you can keep going on Hwy 395 and get to Reno or Sparks.
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Old_Crow

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2020, 05:12:29 AM »
Haven't stayed there but drove through the campground area about 2 years ago.  Looks like a popular spot for fishing.  Other than that, not sure what you're getting for the price.  IIRC it was about $30-35.00 a night for a grass site with very few amenities.

That's what I'm talking about.  Brown's has several commercial campgrounds in the Bishop area.  Last year, when we managed along Bishop Creek, we got into the area before the snow was melted in our campgrounds and ended  up staying at Brown's Town on the south end of Bishop.  $30/night.  I asked about weekly and monthly rates...$30/night.  And then, they have the nerve to charge you an extra $5 every time you want to dump your holding tanks(electric and water hookups only).
I don't mind paying to dump if that's all I'm doing, but I feel like if I'm paying $30/night, dumping ought to be included.  It is in the FS campgrounds I manage.

Wally Crow
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Endlesssummer

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2020, 08:18:04 AM »
Great articles Tom. We have been going to the Mammoth Lakes area for vacation during the summer for a long time. We would stay in a condo in town and drive all over during the day.
Now that we have our Motor Home it gives us opportunities that we never had and very much looking forward to it. Thanks for your comments!!
2007 Fleetwood Jamboree 31M

garyb1st

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2020, 11:55:17 AM »
Apart from the fishing, there are great views of Mammoth, and it's not far to numerous other local sights.If you prefer a concrete jungle, you can keep going on Hwy 395 and get to Reno or Sparks.
Sorry.  Didn't mean to dump on your favorite fishing hole.  We love the Sierras.  Can't remember all the times we've traveled and stayed at various campgrounds between Lone Pine and beyond.  One of our favorites is a small US Forest Service campground in Walker on the banks of the Little Walker River.  The picture of Twin Lakes is gorgeous.  We've driven through and the campground at the end of the road was so full it was a challenging getting out.  But it's also a bit of a drive from Browns Owens River.   

We've only been camping since 2008.  But the changes we've seen over the past 12 years has been eye opening.  I can't imagine what it's like today with all the Covid Campers.  But I'd guess Browns Owens has also undergone some changes since the time you were there with two other campers.  When we were there two years ago, it was maybe 75 - 80% full and had none of the appeal of your pix.  No hookups and generators going from 8AM to 10PM and off road toys going at all hours.  Just isn't my idea of an area where I can get away from the insanity of the big city.  Across the highway is a BLM site with views of Crowley Lake one the one side and the mountains on the others.  Large open sites with a picnic table.  A few water spigots and a dump station. 
Gary B1st

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Tom

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2020, 12:16:58 PM »
Quote from: garyb1st
Didn't mean to dump on your favorite fishing hole.

You didn't, or at least I didn't take it that way. 

Quote
We've driven through and the campground at the end of the road was so full it was a challenging getting out.  But it's also a bit of a drive from Browns Owens River.

I vaguely recall there's another lake up there. We drove up there to check it out one time when we were staying in a motel at Mammoth, and later taking my FIL fishing around June Lake Loop. Wasn't impressed with that campground up there by the lake; As you say, it was a bit of a zoo.

Quote
But the changes we've seen over the past 12 years has been eye opening.


Agreed. When we first "discovered" the Owens River in the early 80's, the only things in the area where Browns now is were cows grazing. We were exploring the Eastern Sierras in Chris' Triumph Spitfire. It was July, I donned my swim trunks, and "waded" in the Owens River to fish. I was looking at Mammoth mountain with lots of snow on the peak.

Quote
"discovered"

More correctly, I'd read about it in a fishing magazine just before we left on our motel-hopping trip. The article included the directions to "turn off Hwy 395 at the little green church towards Benton Crossing/Tom's Place". The church was still painted green the last time we were there.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2020, 05:04:14 PM by Tom »
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Endlesssummer

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #10 on: December 11, 2020, 08:23:03 AM »
We took our motorhome in October and stayed at Bishop RV park at the fairgrounds. We rented a car and drove up to Mammoth Lakes and the June Loop area and it was great!
That iconic church you mention at Benton crossing is still green. I took a picture of it. (See attached) We did drive to Browns campground and it was closed up for the season. Years ago we bought a picture of that church at a art show in Mammoth and it hangs on our wall at home. Great memories.
Thanks
2007 Fleetwood Jamboree 31M

Tom

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2020, 09:59:51 AM »
Looks like you images didn't get attached (file sizes '0")
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Endlesssummer

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2020, 08:41:23 AM »
I took these pictures in October 2020.
Hopefully they post correctly.
Thanks
2007 Fleetwood Jamboree 31M

Endlesssummer

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #13 on: December 12, 2020, 08:43:47 AM »
When I previewed the pictures showed fine. When I post they show “0”
I will send in different format.
2007 Fleetwood Jamboree 31M

Ernie n Tara

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #14 on: December 13, 2020, 08:39:47 AM »
It is much preferred to just reduce the size and attach to the post. People with limited data or download speed will avoid downloading pictures necaus they often are really large!

Ernie
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Endlesssummer

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2020, 08:08:54 AM »

Here's the pictures I took in October 2020 of the church landmark at Benton Crossing and 395 and a snap shot of the Owens River in all its glory! Come April 1st I will reserve a spot at Browns Owens River for the fishing experience!
Thanks
2007 Fleetwood Jamboree 31M

Tom

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Re: Eastern Sierra Owens River
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2020, 10:27:02 AM »
Be aware that the short section of the Owens River immediately alongside the campground has special rules v the stretches above and below the campground. I don't recall what the differences are.
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