Recreation


A RV with bicycles parked in the Modoc National Forest surrounded by trees

Discover an Area by Activity

Select an activity to find an area to visit.

Framed by distinctive geology and views of a timeless landscape, the Modoc National Forest is a place where solitude and recreation come together connecting people to the land and the past. These ecosystems with their rich habitat create abundant opportunities for recreation around water, wildlife viewing, fishing and hunting.

A network of scenic drives provide local communities and growing urban areas easy access to a rich heritage of land use and culture, from Native Americans to present day ranching. In concert with communities, the forest provides learning opportunities that invite visitors to stay, enjoy, and care for the forest in ways that maintain this remote, quiet character.

This website should help you plan your visit to the Forest. Navigate by choosing your planned recreational activity in the left menu. If you have a favorite area in mind, the current status of the campgrounds is listed in the table below with a link to more information. Also be sure to look at the Alerts & Notices page to view any emergency closures or other information that might affect your visit.

Other than a few sites at Medicine Lake that can be reserved through recreation.gov, campsites on the Modoc National Forest are first come, first served with a 14-day limit.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Recreation Conditions Report

Area Name Status Area Conditions
Ash Creek Campground Open Open 6/27/2022:
Bear Camp Flat Trailhead Open Open 5/16/2022: Conditions unknown
Big Sage Boating Site Open Open 9/10/2022: Open. Reservoir level is well below the end of the boat ramp.
Big Sage Campground Open Open 9/16/2022: Open. Reservoir level is well below the end of the boat ramp.
Big Valley Ranger District Open Open 6/27/2022:
Blanche Lake Campground Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Blue Lake Boating Site Open Open 9/10/2022: Open.
Blue Lake Campground Open Open 9/13/2022: Drinking water remains unavailable, break was repaired but too cloudy to fill tank enough to flush and test.
9/12/2022: Drinking water will not be available until further notice. A significant break in the system as discovered 9/9/22 which prevents the water from reaching the tank.
Bullseye Lake Campground Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Cave Lake Boating Site Open Open 9/13/2022: Remain aware of the Barnes Fire a short distance South of this area.
Cave Lake Campground Open Open 9/13/2022: Remain aware of the Barnes Fire a short distance South of this area.
Cedar Creek Lower Trailhead Open Open 9/10/2022: Open
Cedar Creek Upper Trailhead Open Open 9/10/2022: Open.
Cedar Pass Campground Open Open 9/16/2022: Open.
Cedar Pass Ski Area Open Open 5/16/2022: Ski hill is closed for the season. Restrooms are Closed. Drinking water is not available. National Weather Service spot-forecast for Cedar Pass  
Cottonwood Flat Campground Open Open 6/10/2022: Open.
Devil's Garden Ranger District Open Open 6/10/2022: All areas open.
Doorknob Warming Hut Snowpark Open Open 02/10/2022: Open for use but windows boarded up due to Antelope Fire Damage so flashlight will be needed to use toilets. Forest is seeking funding for repairs.
Doublehead Ranger District Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Duncan North Boating Site Open Open 9/10/2022: Water levels low
Duncan South Boating Site Open Open 9/10/2022: Water levels low
East Creek Campground Open Open 9/19/2022 Open. Spring 2023: $15/night fee will apply.
East Creek Trailhead Open Open 5/16/2022:
Emerson Campground Open Open 9/10/2022: open
Green Springs Boating Site Open Open 5/16/2022: Open
Howard's Gulch Campground Open Open 9/19/2022: Open.
Jane's Reservoir Boating Site Open Open 9/16/2022: Open. Reservoir low.
Jane's Reservoir Campground Open Open 9/16/2022: Open.
Lassen Creek Campground Open Open 9/13/2022: Open. Remain aware of the Barnes Fire a short distance North of this area. Obsidian season ended Labor Day
Lava Camp Campground Open Open .
Lily Lake Boating Site Open Open 9/13/2022: Remain aware of the Barnes Fire a short distance South of this area.
Lily Lake Picnic Site Open Open 9/13/2022: Remain aware of the Barnes Fire a short distance South of this area.
Little Medicine Lake Picnic Site Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Logan Slough Boating Site Open Open 9/19/2022: Open. Avoid muddy roads leading into area.
Lower Rush Creek Campground Open Open .
Medicine Lake Recreation Area Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Middle Fork Davis Creek Mine Closed Closed reopens July 2023
Mill Creek Falls Campground Open Open 9/10/2022: Open. New fee of $15/night
Mill Creek Trail Open Open 9/13/2022: open
Modoc Backcountry Discovery Trail Open Open 5/16/2022: Conditions unknown, but this is a bucket list destination for off-road enthusiasts and adventure riders.
North Emerson Trailhead Open Open 6/10/2021: Conditions unknown
Obsidian Needles Mine Closed Closed Reopens July 2023
Owl Creek Trail Open Open 6/10/2021: Conditions unknown
Patterson Campground Open Open 9/19/2022: Potable water is not available. Nearest potable system is in East Creek Campground
Payne Springs Campground Open Open
Pepperdine Campground Open Open 8/11/2022: Open. Spring 2023: $15/night fee will apply.
Pepperdine Equestrian Campground Open Open 9/19/2022 Open Spring 2023: $15/night fee will apply.
Pepperdine Trailhead Open Open 8/11/2022: Open.
Pine Creek Trailhead Open Open 6/10/2022: Conditions unknown
Pink Lady Mine Closed Closed Opens July 1
Plum Valley Campground Open Open 5/16/2022: Be aware of hazard trees.
Poison Flat Trail Open Open 6/10/2022: Conditions unknown
Rainbow Mine Closed Closed Opens July 1
Red Tail Rim Trail North Trailhead Open Open
Red Tail Rim Trail South Trailhead Open Open .
Reservoir C Boating Site Open Open 9/16/2022: Open
Reservoir C Campground Open Open 9/16/2022: Open
Reservoir F Boating Site Open Open 9/16/2022: Open
Reservoir F Campground Open Open 9/16/2022: Open
Schonchin Springs Campground Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Slide Creek Trail Open Open 6/10/2022: Conditions unknown
Soup Springs Campground Open Open 8/22/2022: Open. Fees Apply.
Soup Springs Trailhead Open Open 8/22/2022: Open
South Emerson Trailhead None None 6/10/2022: Conditions unknown
Stough Reservoir Campground Open Open 8/22/2022: Spring 2023: $15/night fee will apply.
Summit Trail Open Open 6/10/2022: Conditions unknown
Tom Smith Trail Open Open 6/10/2022: Conditions unknown
Upper Cottonwood Trail None None 5/16/2022:
Upper Rush Creek Campground Open Open .
Warner Mountain Ranger District Open Open 10/06/2021: Campground water systems will be shut down in the coming weeks.
Willow Creek Campground Open Open .
Willow Creek Picnic Site Open Open

Recreation Areas

Highlights