Due to operational challenges associated with winter storm impacts, Devils Postpile National Monument will not reopen its 20-site campground in 2019. There are five U.S. Forest Service campgrounds in the immediate area that can accommodate several hundred campers a night.
The monument has limited day-use facilities that do not meet the demands of the 150,000 annual visitors. The existing day-use area is congested and cramped, due to the campground and parking occupying much of the usable space. This continued closure will provide greater access and a higher quality recreation experience for day-use visitors along the riverfront for fishing and picnicking. Visitors of all abilities will have access to the river and more opportunities to enjoy the natural sights and sounds of the area without the more strenuous hiking required by the monument’s other destinations.
In addition, extensive parking congestion occurs in the monument after Labor Day when the mandatory shuttle operations cease and, at times, visitors are turned away due to lack of parking. Often, the current parking capacity of 65 spaces cannot accommodate fall shoulder season visitors, when, on average, 300-500 cars arrive daily. By using the campsites for overflow parking in 2019, many more vehicles can park and fewer vehicles will be turned away.
With visitors finding new ways to enjoy this riverfront area during recent closures, the benefits of permanently converting the campground to a day-use area have become more apparent. The monument is interested to hear whether you think the 20-unit campground is the best use of this space or if it should be reimagined for day-use activities. Comment cards are available at the ranger station.