Nation/World

Columbia Chronicles For Lake Campsite, Get There Early

By all means, bring your RV and your boat. Load up the kids and the fishing gear and head for Lake Roosevelt for the weekend.

Just don’t show up Saturday morning and expect to find a convenient campsite.

Porcupine Bay, the National Park Service campground closest to Spokane, normally is full by Thursday night, said park ranger Terri Ray. Fort Spokane fills up by Friday afternoon.

“Holiday weekends are a different story,” said Ray. People will set up camp on Monday and pay for the whole week just so they’ll have a place to stay on the weekend.

The park service runs 31 campgrounds with 813 campsites in the Coulee Dam National Recreation Area. Others are available for groups only.

Generally speaking, the farther a campground is from Spokane the less competition there is for space, said Ray.

Boat-in campgrounds, such as Plum Point, Penix Canyon and Crystal Cove, offer fewer amenities than the larger drive-up camps. They typically lack running water or flush toilets - and are among the last to fill up.

Beach campers can pitch tents anywhere below the high-water mark, as long as they are at least half a mile from the nearest developed campground. Fires are allowed only on portable fire pans or boxes that campers bring themselves. Ashes must be packed out.

Some of the most remote campgrounds are on the two Indian reservations that border portions of the lake. , DataTimes MEMO: This sidebar appeared with the story: Looking for a site? For information and a map of campgrounds, call the National Park Service at (509) 633-9441 or visit ranger stations at Kettle Falls, Fort Spokane and Coulee Dam. For information about fees and camping permits, call the Spokane Tribe of Indians at (509) 258-4581 or Colville Confederated Tribes, at (509) 722-4034.

This sidebar appeared with the story: Looking for a site? For information and a map of campgrounds, call the National Park Service at (509) 633-9441 or visit ranger stations at Kettle Falls, Fort Spokane and Coulee Dam. For information about fees and camping permits, call the Spokane Tribe of Indians at (509) 258-4581 or Colville Confederated Tribes, at (509) 722-4034.



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