We’ve recently become aware of the increasing popularity of alternative outdoor lodging in California, essentially camping in caravans or cabins. These types of accommodations are attractive to people who are looking to get away, but may not be interested in the investment of equipment to make it a regular occurrence. And for the bicyclist, the ‘home base’ of the locations allow for day-rides and discovery of places that are unfamiliar, without the encumbrance of bike-touring, carrying all your sleeping and eating gear with you.
This kind of caravan camping eliminates many of the challenges of a traditional campsite, but benefits from the features that make camping so popular. The accommodations include caravans and cabins for sleeping in, wash rooms either in the the trailer or on the property, ample parking, and modern decor that compliment the woods, forests, and gardens that these locations are built upon.
For some, these locations fall into the category of ‘glamping’, a portmanteau meant to deride, but the frivolity of buying hundreds of dollars of camping equipment for what may be a flight of fancy, must be considered. And not to mention having to find the space to store it when you’re not out adventuring. These alternative lodging options allow for a focus on the exploration and riding- without having to find a level place to pitch a tent.
Caravan Outpost - Ojai
The charming Airstreams at Caravan Outpost coalesce together to provide a communal setting in a tropical garden. The grounds are conveniently located right behind the Ojai Valley Trail which runs parallel to Highway 33 and leads right into coastal scenery of Ventura. Additionally, the Outpost works with a local bike shop to offer on-site mechanical work for any bike touch ups you may need before you hit the trail. The caravans can accommodate up to 4-5 guests, so it is ideal for a group trip or family reunion.
AutoCamp - Yosemite, Russian River, Santa Barbara
There are three AutoCamp locations in California; Yosemite, Russian River and Santa Barbara. All three sites are in breathtaking locations, but the Yosemite camp makes a lasting impression. The Yosemite grounds are the largest and most secluded of the three, and they also offer the option of “luxury tents” in addition to their many Airstreams. The grounds are directly adjacent to the Yosemite National Park, and they work with REI to offer hikes through the nearby trails. Amenities at AutoCamp Yosemite include a heated pool, communal fire pits, general store, daily shuttles to the Park, and spacious accommodations to fit the whole family. If Yosemite is just out of reach, the Santa Barbara location is ideal for beach bums.
Getaway House - Running Springs
Observing the wilderness from the Getaway camp in Running Springs is dazzling. This location is relatively new and is an excellent choice for nearby multi-terrain riding, especially considering the proximity to the Sky Park Village and Chattahoochee National Forest.
The Getaway experience features wooden cabins in Running Springs, and is a respite for those looking to temporarily retreat into the peaceful, California wilderness. Each cabin showcases the majestic wilderness with their iconic wide-paneled windows that allow you to observe nature while indoors. Amenities in the cabins include comfy queen beds (or queen bunks), kitchenettes with two burner stoves and mini-fridges, hot showers, running water, toilets, an outdoor fire pit with grilling grate, outdoor seating, AC and heat.