Dark Canyon Campground

Banning, California 92220

Dark Canyon Campground

Dark Canyon Campground Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"I drove through Idyllwild in a mist so thick the neon lights of the cute little mountain town could only blush through the fog. I found a place to park and drifted along a sidewalk until I ran right into a Mount San Jacinto State Park ranger who said this fog never happens this time of year. It was June 15; it was supposed to be sunny and at least 80°F.

Back on CA 243, I leaned out the window and navigated by the stripes down the middle of the highway until FS 4S02 split off to the right, and I could reckon the road by aiming for the gap in the pines. After traveling down the narrowing road and across a stream, I was at Dark Canyon Campground, one of the most charming campgrounds in the very charming Idyllwild area of the San Bernardinos."

Dark Canyon Campground Trip Reports

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The hanna flat campground is convenient and beautiful but unfortunately the fire that rolled through that area charred a lot of it up. We drove about 10 past the site and pulled off the side of the road, up a hill and found a gorgeous little hill to post up on. The surrounding area is still untouched and worth camping at.
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Note the position of the trees around a site before setting up camp in this "Fully Shaded" campground. We arrived here at 4pm and picked out what we thought would be the perfect spot. Secluded, and shaded (at least at 4pm), the next morning there wasn't a square inch of shade within 100 feet of our area. The tent must have been 90° inside and the campsite was getting a full-on scorch from the sun. I cooked breakfast under an umbrella and still, somehow, got sunburned. I know, I should have paid more attention to the trees around the site. I'm fairly new to CA camping. So this review is for other semi newbies. But wow, it was brutal until 4pm again (we actually moved over one site instead of waiting for shade to come to us). Anyway, that being said. This is a beautiful campground with super-friendly staff and brand-new facilities (if you're in need). Seemed liked the inner campsites were pretty well shade most of the day. we tried the outer sites. In hindsight, I'd take shade over seclusion any day.

Dark Canyon Campground Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
Additional Use
909-382-2921, www.fs.usda.gov/sbnf
Local Contacts
Fees per Night
Water, vault toilets.

Trail Log