What a lovely state park and campground!! We arrived on Monday afternoon and stayed until Wednesday. The time was too short and we could have stayed for a few weeks and still would have wanted to stay. It was that wonderful of a place!!
It’s a very large campground with a few different loops. The sites are dry with water spigots throughout. There are flush bathrooms in each loop with the shower building set apart near the exit of the campground, which is quite a distance to walk. Due to the drought there were certain days the showers were closed and they were posted online or at the campground.
Each site is paved as is the roads. The distance and privacy between each site seemed luxurious. We enjoyed our site. It was deep and behind our site there was lots of forest with a dirt trail that ran along behind. We noticed there were many trails in the campground both dirt and paved. Some allowed dogs on leash. The paved bike trails just outside the campground also allowed dogs. The bike trail system in Lake Tahoe looks extensive. We ran out of time to try it out but look forward to a return visit.
Our site had a bear locker and it appears black bears are active as the fine for leaving food or scented items unattended in your site is $1000. We also had a grill, separate campfire ring, and picnic table. Our site had a separate dining area from the living room. There was so much room in our site for the kids to spread out and not bother other campers. The campground was not full but we had neighbors all around us and felt as if we hardly saw or heard them.
The Dayside of Sugar Pine State Park
We visited the dayside one afternoon to play in the water and work on the Jr. Ranger books as part of the California State Jr. Ranger program. We walked the interpretative trail which was very informative about the history of the area and the many groups of folks that called this park home once upon a time. There were also replica buildings of some of the homes of the first settlers as well as the Ehrman Mansion that offer tours most likely on the weekends.
We found on a Tuesday afternoon that the park was mostly deserted and enjoyed having the park to ourselves. We also encountered many Lodgepole Chipmunks in the park. They are quite cute, curious, fast and very fearless. Lady was just as mesmerized by these animals as they were of us.
The park is a lovely place to visit with its calm, shallow waters and shady, paved trails. We learned that Edwin L. Z’Berg worked tirelessly in the 50’s and 60’s to create legislature to protect these natural areas in the Tahoe Basin creating this state park and other preserves and parks in the area for all future generations to enjoy. We are thankful he and many other naturalists had the foresight and determination to protect these beautiful areas for us to now enjoy.