Camping at Camp Camping at Camp Pendleton Sunset

Camping at Camp Pendleton

Surfing on New Years Day in San Diego

(Alas, we don’t surf)

Camping at Camp Pendleton this December and January has been interesting. In mid-December, we moved north from our campground at Admiral Baker in Mission Valley San Diego to Lake O’Neill in Camp Pendleton (spared by the Lilac Fire).  Mission Valley was great but had a noise problem, fire engines-good, ambulances-good, racing cars and motorcycles-bad, all noisy.  Admiral Baker was right next to the Navy golf courses (same name) and we had intended to play golf while we took care of loose ends finalizing our move out of California. We didn’t play golf even once.

Lake O’Neill

We were more realistic at our next stop and didn’t expect leisure.  Lake O’Neill is nice enough but also somewhat noisy, noisy — until 10 pm due to being on the flight path to Camp Pendleton’s airport.  Thankfully, the Marines used a different route after 10 pm and we were able to sleep. We are also thankful that Camp Pendleton is full of helicopters rather than jets.  After a short time there we moved to the beach, still on Camp Pendleton, just a short drive away and still we were still getting things settled so that we could tour the west.  We arrived at Lake O’Neill on New Year’s Day. It is not the most glamorous campground but it will do. We need to finish getting ready for real travel with numerous tasks and doctors appointments and accomplished as much as we could and got used to RVing as part of our introduction to our new lives.

Del Mar Beach Camp Pendleton

While we were there it got moderately cold, below or at freezing and when we moved on January 27 a new reality hit, a shocking reality really.  We haven’t yet divided our tasks and now as Tami pulls in the slides, I am always outside watching for anything unusual. This day I was inside, with Tami, and as our main slide came in, we both heard a huge crash. Of course, the sound of a huge crash is undesirable after stopping immediately, we went outside to investigate. We have self-retracting fabric covers on top of our slides and on our main slide because it is so big, a pool of water gathers on the fabric. This day, the pool of water had turned to ice, and as we retracted the slide, the ice crashed to the ground. Glad I wasn’t in the way. Not only am I outside when the slide retracts, but I also stand well clear.

Amphibious Assault Vehicles

We love the beach at Camp Pendleton, both beach campgrounds have lots to say for them, both are pretty, and both are busy on weekends. Del Mar beach has a bigger weekend crowd and lots more sand. At Del Mar Beach, the campground is used daily by the Marines driving their Amphibious Assault Vehicles right behind the RVs on their way practice areas. As a kid, I would have loved it.

Campsite View, San Onofre, California
Camping at Camp Pendleton San Onofre, California

San Onofre Beach

On January 27, we moved to the other beach campground, at San Onofre Beach, also on Camp Pendleton which instead of armored vehicles has a seemingly endless parade of surfboards.  This campground is sandwiched between two of Southern California’s destination surf spots.  If you pick the right location at San Onofre the commuter trains don’t bother you.  It seems that cargo trains always bother us; there is a big distinction between commuter trains and cargo trains in the amount of noise they make. Commuter trains you hear, cargo trains you hear and feel.

Here is the link to an article on authorized patrons: Who can stay at military campgrounds?

Here is a link to the google map for the area.  

Link to our 2018 Route.

Link to our route San Diego to Las Vegas.

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