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Camping at Cottonwood State Park

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Overview of Cottonwood State Park

Cottonwood State Park is a remote wilderness area located within the Plumas National Forest in California. As a designated state park, it offers visitors an array of recreational activities in a serene and natural setting. The park provides opportunities for camping, hiking, fishing, and wildlife viewing among other outdoor activities.

Camping Information

Camping Availability: Cottonwood State Park usually offers a range of camping options, from developed campsites to more primitive backcountry experiences. Campsites might include amenities like fire pits, picnic tables, and nearby restroom facilities, though the level of amenities can vary.

Reservations: Depending on the campground and the time of year, you may need to make a reservation for a campsite. It's always a good idea to check the availability of campsites and make reservations well in advance, especially during peak season.

Camping Fees: There are typically daily fees for camping which vary depending on the site and services provided. Fees contribute to park maintenance and facility improvements.

Campground Rules: To ensure the safety and enjoyment of all visitors, the park will have specific rules in place. These may include quiet hours, fire restrictions, pet policies, and regulations about wildlife interaction.

Seasonal Access: Access to the park and camping facilities may be seasonal, with operating hours and available services changing with the weather and seasons. It's crucial to check if the park is open before planning your trip.

Amenities and Facilities

Toilets and Showers: Developed campgrounds may offer restrooms and shower facilities, while more primitive sites will not.

Potable Water: Availability of drinking water can vary within the park, so it’s advisable to bring plenty of your own or have a method to treat natural water sources.

Firewood: Some campgrounds offer firewood for sale, but bringing your own wood or gathering it (where allowed) is often necessary.


Hiking Trails: There are likely trails available for all levels of hikers, ranging from short, easy walks to more challenging hikes.

Fishing: The park may offer freshwater fishing opportunities in lakes or rivers within its boundaries, and appropriate state fishing licenses will usually be required.

Wildlife Viewing: The park, located within Plumas National Forest, provides habitats for various wildlife species, making it a great location for enthusiasts to observe nature.

Safety and Regulations

Fire Safety: Always adhere to current fire regulations and restrictions, as wildfires are a significant concern in California's forested areas.

Leave No Trace: Practice Leave No Trace principles to minimize your impact on the environment. Pack out all trash, stay on designated trails, and leave natural and cultural resources undisturbed.

Wildlife Precautions: Store food properly and maintain a safe distance from wildlife to protect both yourself and the animals.

Emergency Preparedness: Cell reception may be limited, so prepare accordingly. Have a plan for emergencies and inform someone of your itinerary.

Getting There

Access: Check the park’s official site or contact park authorities for specific directions, as remote parks can be challenging to locate and may require travel on unpaved roads.

Local Services: Services may be limited near the park, so be sure to bring necessary supplies with you, including enough fuel if driving longer distances.

Contact Information

Official Channels: For the most accurate and up-to-date information, it’s best to contact the park directly or visit the official website for Plumas National Forest or the California Department of Parks and Recreation. They can provide details on campsite availability, conditions, closures, fees, and permits.

Remember that this information is a general guide and specifics can change. Always verify details for Cottonwood State Park specifically, as services and conditions can vary widely from one park to another, even within the same national forest.

Location of Cottonwood State Park
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