A Birthday Camping Trip @ Guajome



Yesterday was Joyce’s xx-something birthday. Seems many women don’t like their age disclosed when they hit “milestone” birthdays. Not sure if Joyce minds age disclosure, so I won’t tell you how young she is.

In celebration of her birthday we could have done many things, but Joyce decided she wanted to do a special camping trip. After 13 consecutive camping trips in the desert, she wanted to go somewhere that had lots of green trees and plants, and cool moisture laden air — translation: near the ocean. More than that, she wanted to go to Guajome. This actually surprised me; not her wanting to go to Guajome, but that she wanted to go camping. I had visions of her wanting to do a weekend getaway to a 5 Star resort and/or dinner at an upscale restaurant.


This is a 500+ acre park in Oceanside, which is a few miles from the ocean. It includes marshlands and a couple ponds. Several miles of hiking trails wind through the park. It is in an urban area, so not someplace to seek wilderness solitude.

We had been to Guajome once before, back in 2006 shortly after we bought our 2006 Fleetwood Niagara. Some friends had made weekend reservations for us as a gift. Campgrounds with hook-ups are not my cup of tea. They tend to be crowded, noisy, and often full of inconsiderate people. And I seem to remember our previous trip to Guajome included a lot of noise. However, this is where my lovely bride wanted to go, so there wasn’t any debate or discussion. It was her birthday and her decision.

I made reservations ahead of time, and with only one campsite available I didn’t have a choice because everything else was reserved — this is a sign of an overpopulated campground and not a positive beginning in my mind. I paid the $29 per night charges, plus a $5 reservation fee. Once we arrived there was another $2 fee for Corky our wonder dog.

The two posts on the left of the picture are water and electrical hook-ups for the camper. We are self contained and need neither.
The two posts on the left of the picture are water and electrical hook-ups for the camper. We are self contained and need neither.

I don’t mind paying to use a campground, it does take money to pay for up-keep and maintenance, but we are used to camping in undeveloped or semi-developed federal lands where camping is free or in the $5 per night range using my America the Beautiful Senior Pass.


On the rare occasion we stay in a fully developed campground, I just expect the worse and anything else makes it a good trip because the absolute worse usually doesn’t happen. No matter how impolite or inconsiderate the other campers might be, I just ignore them and focus on having a good camping trip; which means most trips are enjoyable ones.

The view from our camper.
The view from our camper.

This trip was excellent. Nice campers all around us, very little noise, good hiking trails, fantastic weather, and our campsite was in a nice location. Most importantly Joyce was thrilled with her birthday trip.

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Heck, we may even go back to Guajome some day.


The rest of the story.
The rest of the story.

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