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Almost in the middle of the beautiful state of Oregon is Prineville Reservoir State Park, which is very easy to visit and enjoy when you book an RV in Crook County. This state park is located in the high desert area of Oregon, near the Ochoco Mountain Range, and located adjacent to the Prineville Reservoir. The park was originally conceived as part of the Crooked River Federal Reclamation Project in the late 1950s.
It wasn’t until the early 1960s when the Crook County Court got the land, and the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department allowed the creation of the park. While RV camping at Prineville Reservoir State Park, you’ll have approximately 3,000 acres to explore. The area surrounding the park offers views of mountains and sweeping panoramic vistas. This section of Oregon isn't filled with the same rich, dense green forests you’d expect on the coast — instead, it has its own beauty only found in this part of the country. Don’t worry, though; the park is near decent-sized cities like Bend, Redmond, and Prineville that are filled with modern attractions.
RV camping at state parks is a fabulous way to explore new areas of the country, and when you rent a camper near Prineville Reservoir State Park, you’ll have plenty of exciting activities to enjoy. Fishing is a popular activity in the reservoir and can be enjoyed all year long. Some of the most prominent species in the reservoir are both large and smallmouth bass, rainbow trout, crayfish, catfish, and crappie. Some seasons offer better fishing than others, and no matter what time of year you are casting a line, you’ll have to have an up-to-date fishing license.
Other reservoir based activities are waterskiing, boating, wakeboarding, windsurfing, kayaking, canoeing, paddleboarding, and swimming. There are sandy beaches on many parts of the shore, and a modern boat ramp makes it easy to get boats in and out of the water. Swimming is permitted, but beware there are no lifeguards on duty unless otherwise posted. Of course, when you want to have fun without getting wet, there are many other options.
Hiking around the lake will bring you to picturesque overlooks, offering both views of the lake and the surrounding mountains. There are many miles of hiking trails to explore and feel free to bring your four-legged friend so long as they are kept restrained at all times and cleaned up after. A few of the hiking trails are also ADA compliant, opening up the possibility of adventure to more varieties of folks motorhome camping at Prineville Reservoir State Park.
Onsite state park RV campgrounds make staying overnight at Prineville Reservoir State Park a breeze. Campsites can be reserved ahead of time by telephone or online, so be sure to book your campsite after sorting out the details of your RV rental. There are 22 full-hookup sites that are available all year long, and an additional 22 electrical only sites that also have water. For the latter, there is a centrally located dump station to use when needed.
There are also 2 ADA compliant campsites that are typically reserved for campers with disabilities. All campsites have their own picnic table, fire ring, and grill to make your stay more comfortable. Additionally, all campsites have access to flushing toilets, hot showers, a picnic area, hiking trailheads, and more. There are also 28 more campsites that operate on a first-come, first-served basis.
To learn about how life was lived in this part of the country before people had the internet, cars, and even telephones, head to the Bowman Museum, or the Pioneer Cabin Museum in Prineville. This city is just north of the park and it is easy to get to while camping at Prineville Reservoir State Park. The Bowman Museum tells the history of Crook County through exhibits and artifacts, while the Pioneer Cabin Museum contains plenty of preserved and recreated pioneer-era artifacts and household items.
Prineville is also one of the most convenient places to go when you want to fill up your gas tank, grab a bite to eat or visit a grocery store. There are over a dozen different restaurants to choose from in town, ranging from local Mexican to seasonal ice cream boutiques. You’ll also find sandwich eateries, cafes, Chinese restaurants, and more. Also in town are the standard array of fast food and chain restaurant options for those seeking something a bit more familiar.
Heading west to Bend will bring you to the Deschutes Historical Museum and the Children’s Museum of Central Oregon. Both of these are fantastic ways to spend the day or more and have exhibits suited for both adults and children. While you camp in an RV near Bend, be sure to drive south of the city to visit the High Desert Museum, which features natural and cultural history exhibits that tell the story of the greater area.