San Bernardino National Forest
Guide

Introduction

Get out of the hustle and bustle of big city life to vacation in your RV at San Bernardino National Forest. For over a hundred years, a 154,000-acre forest is a great way to spend your time outdoors. Enjoy the crisp, clean air while you hike the many trails, ride horseback, hunt, and even ski. A destination spot for the most southern California's outdoor scene, this forest offers incredible views of Los Angeles or the majestic sights of Big Bear Lake. Into rock climbing? San Bernardino National Forest is an excellent location to get your adrenaline going. Make plans to get to the summit of Bertha Park, San Bernardino Peak, or San Gorgonio Mountain. This national forest is home to 37 RV campgrounds that range in first-come, first-served or by reservations. Comprised of the wild beauty of the San Jacinto and San Bernardino Mountains, this area encompasses both Sand Berandion and Riverside counties. Come here to San Bernardino National Forest for the most awe-inspiring sunsets, hiking trails, and enjoying making memories by the campfire. What is not to like? With the lush, green forest, abundant California wildlife, and majestic vistas - your trip will be social media worthy. Don't hesitate, head to San Bernardino National Forest for your next exciting camping trip. There are over two dozen RV campground options at this National Forest, but we've highlighted some of the top choices for you below.

RV Rentals in San Bernardino National Forest

Transportation

Driving

Leave the city life behind as you head to this great outdoor spot for Southern California for your next motorhome camping trip! You’ll find that this area is a fantastic place to enjoy the ”golden state” in its natural beauty. With the national forest less than two hours from San Diego and a three-hour drive from Los Angeles, you’ll find that this is a fabulous RV destination spot. Pack some patience with you as you travel the roads. This national forest is a hot place to camp no matter the season.

Parking

When you arrive at San Bernardino National Forest, you’ll quickly see why this area is a popular place to be for the outdoors. Many of the campgrounds are reserved in advance and require back-in parking. Before you head out on the trails on anything besides your hiking boots, pick up a copy of the Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM) from the Ranger’s office.

Public Transportation

Campgrounds and parking in San Bernardino National Forest

Campsites in San Bernardino National Forest

Reservations camping

Fern Basin Campground

There is nothing like getting to the great outdoors and enjoy California’s sunshine at Fern Basin Campground. An adventure lover’s paradise, this campground has excellent access to rock climbing, hiking, and mountain biking. Open from May to November, there are 15 sites you can reserve in advance. You'll have access to potable water, restrooms, and a dumpster at the campground. You'll find a fire ring and picnic table at every site. A pet-friendly campground, you’ll want to bring Rover along for your next camping trip. Grocery stores and laundromats are available within 10 miles of the campground. This campground is suitable for smaller RVs and trailers since most sites can fit rigs up to 20 feet long.

Marion Mountain

Escape from it all as you stay at this tranquil camping spot in San Bernardino National Forest. The Marion Mountain Campground offers 25 RV spots that provide a fire ring, grill, and picnic tables. Open from May to November, the campground offers potable water and pit toilets. Most campers love the jaw-dropping mountain views they can get right from their campsite. Although there are no hookups provided, you can enjoy rock climbing and hiking just steps away from your site. Marion Mountain Campground is suitable for smaller RVs and campers with a maximum vehicle length of 20 feet. Pets are welcome. Enjoy the wild beauty of California at this great campground. 

Boulder Basin Campground

Come out and surround yourself with nature at the rustic Boulder Basin Campground. Take a deep breath of the crisp mountain air and let the stress roll off you at this calming spot. Campers will find 34 spots that provide picnic tables, fire pits, and grills. Restrooms are centrally located. Typically open from May to October, this campground is a great place to set up base camp and enjoy hiking, rock climbing, and mountain biking. If you're up for a challenge, try the 3.6-mile Black Mountain Trail. Dogs are welcome, but should be restrained when outside the rig. Keep in mind that this campground is suitable for smaller rigs up to 20 feet long, and some sites are for tent-camping only.

Seasonal activities in San Bernardino National Forest

Off-Season

The Thrill of Prospecting

Feel like you're back in the Wild Wild West by mining for gold at San Bernardino National Forest. You may find shimmering, different colors of stone and even the coveted gold. Feel like those on the great frontier did over a hundred years ago during the thrill of the hunt. You'll want to bring your camera in your camper to capture this fun family-fun activity; you'll never know what you'll find!

Horseback Riding

You'll find excitement out on your horse as you travel several miles of nature trails. See the broad landscape of the Southern California area. Connect to the Pacific Crest Trail by visiting the Spitter Peak and Forbes trails for a little adventure. New to horseback riding? Try the Big Bear Area that provides trails great for those of all experience levels. An excellent place for riding, may there be many horseback trips during your next RV vacation.

Winter Sports

There is nothing like getting out in nature during the wintertime. Enjoy exercising in the great outdoors as you choose from snowboarding, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, snowshoeing, or playing in the snow. San Bernardino National Forest is an excellent place to enjoy the winter seasons. Make sure that you have the correct licenses before you head out on your snowmobile. The winter powder awaits you, so plan your next winter RV camping trip today!

In-Season

Fishing

Take a break from your screens and cast your fishing line in the many San Bernardino National Forest's streams and reservoirs during your next RV camping trip. Get ready to catch rainbow trout, bluegill, bass, and catfish. You can cast your line spending your time out in a boat, along the banks of the rivers, or at the ADA-compliant fishing pier. Head out from your RV camping site to catch your next big fish!

Off-Highway Riding

For those who love a little adventure, the Off-Highway Vehicle system is calling your name. With hundreds of miles, you can uniquely travel the terrain with motorcycles, ATVs, and UTVs. Grab a copy of the Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM) to know where you need to go on your next excursion. Don't try to create your trails as if it is not on the map since you are not allowed to travel it. Have an experience of a lifetime during your next RV camping trip.

Picnicking

There is always a good reason to enjoy a meal outdoors, so head out from your camping site to experience a little more of Mother Nature. At San Bernardino National Forest, you'll find several places to sit back and relax during your next motorhome camping trip. Most picnic areas provide drinking water and have access to water for fishing and boating. Dependent on the weather, not all sites are accessible during the winter season and whatever you bring in, you must pack-out.

Find the perfect campsite.