[Twin Lakes Campground] Mommy Hiker Campground Spotlight

Twin Lakes Campground in Mammoth Lakes, California offers family tent camping at its best. Boating, biking, hiking, fishing; it has everything an active family could ask for and is also perfect for just sitting around and doing absolutely nothing.

Reserve your spot today at Recreation.Gov for your next unforgettable family camping adventure!

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Twin Lakes Campground is located in the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains near the town of Mammoth Lakes, California. It offers lakeside camping with breathtaking scenery and many outdoor activities. The lake is a great base for fishing, boating, viewing waterfalls and hiking, and offers close proximity to the town’s amenities.

Natural Features

The campground is forested with lodgepole pine, providing partial shade and a private setting. It sits at an elevation of 8,600 feet at the base of snow-capped, 11,059′ Mammoth Mountain, a popular skiing destination. A cascading waterfall flows into one of the lakes. The mountains are abundant with wildlife, including black bear, mountain lions, mule deer, pine marten, pika and many species of fish and birds.

There are tons of activities and amenities available within the Twin Lakes Campground

  • Boat Ramp
  • Campfire Rings
  • Drinking Water
  • Dump Station
  • Fee Station
  • Firewood
  • Fishing
  • Fishing Pier
  • Flush Toilets
  • Food Storage Locker
  • General Store
  • Host Parking
  • Paved Roads
  • Pets Allowed
  • Propane Fuel Available
  • Restroom
  • Showers
  • Trash Collection

Exploring the Outdoors: A Conejo Valley Guide

Located 45 minutes north of Los Angeles, just off the 101 freeway, the Conejo Valley is a splendid outdoor playground, virtually undiscovered by its cosmopolitan neighbors. The gateway to the Santa Monica Mountains Recreational Center, the area originally settled by the Chumash people spans both southeastern Ventura County and northwestern Los Angeles County and offers a wide variety of opportunities to get outdoors with the family.

Given its close proximity and easy accessibility, the Conejo Valley makes for the perfect date night, day trip or weekend getaway, and its thriving craft beer and wine scene is an added bonus when looking to balance outdoor play with nightlife merriment. The rural beauty of this area is hidden in plain sight, boasting more than 500 miles of hiking and biking trails making it a unique destination that is friendly for the entire family.

Here are just a few ways you and your family can get off-the-beaten path and explore the hidden gems the Conejo Valley has to offer.

Hiking and Biking

Paramount Ranch Hike

  • Distance: 4 miles round trip
  • Elevation Gain: 150 ft
  • Open to: Hiking, Biking
  • Difficulty: Moderate

2903 Cornell Road, Agoura Hills, CA, 91301
Take the Ventura Freeway (U.S. 101) to Kanan Road exit. Head south on Kanan for 0.5 miles. Turn left on Cornell Way and veer to the right. Continue south for 2.5 miles. The entrance is on right side of the road.

Grasslands Hike – Malibu Creek State Park

  • Distance: 0.75 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 105 feet
  • Open to: Hiking, Biking, Equestrian
  • Difficulty: Easy

27000 Mulholland Highway, Agoura Hills, CA 91301
From Highway 101, take the Las Virgenes Road exit and go south for 3.1 miles to Mulholland Highway.  Take a right on Mulholland Highway and almost immediately, look for the Grasslands Trail on the left.

Los Robles Hike – Los Padres

  • Distance: 6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 900 feet
  • Open to: Hiking, Biking, Equestrian
  • Difficulty: Easy

From the 101 freeway, drive to the south end of Moorpark Rd, turn right on Greenmeadow Ave., and go a half mile to the parking lot.

Paradise Falls Hike – Wildwood Park

  • Distance: 2.5 miles (loop)
  • Elevation change: 260 feet
  • Open to: Hiking, Biking
  • Difficulty: Moderate

928 W Avenida De Los Arboles, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360
Take the 101 Freeway to Thousand Oaks to exit 45 for Lynn Road. Drive north for 2.5 miles on Lynn Road, and turn left on Avenido de los Arboles. Drive to the end of the street and park in the lot on the left.

Pedego 101 Electric Bike Tour

Biking is a great way to explore a new city, allowing you the ability to cover a ton of ground, and connect with your surroundings without being confined to the interior of a car. Electric bikes give you more flexibility to discover farther distances even if you’re with young kids or grandparents.

During our time in the Conejo Valley we hooked up with Pedego 101, who offers a full fleet of electric bikes with a variety of models that fit all shapes and sizes. They were so knowledgeable and welcoming, after our 13-mile bike ride across picturesque bridges and through tree-lined canyon roads, we felt as if we had gained a family.

Pedego 101
2859 Agoura Road Westlake Village, CA 91361
(805) 379-9245

Family Friendly Dining

The Malibu Cafe
Nestled in the gentle, rolling hills of its word-famous namesake, Malibu Cafe is a cornerstone of coastal, rustic living. Eat decadent corn and lobster chowder, listen to down-home live music and lounge under the canopy of centuries-old California oak trees tastefully decorated with elegant chandeliers.

Malibu Cafe is as kid-friendly as it gets with 100% outdoor seating and plethora of fun kid games such as jumbo Jenga and air hokey set up on the lawn for all to enjoy. The biggest challenge you might have to face at this laid back ranch-style restaurant is leaving.

The Malibu Cafe
327 Latigo Canyon Road Malibu, CA 90265
(818) 540-2400

Tavern 101 Grill and Tap House

Another kid-friendly tavern to try when you have a hankering for mouth-watering BBQ is Tavern 101. Located just off the 101 freeway, this hidden little gem of a restaurant offers a laid-back atmosphere, hand-crafted cocktails and more meat than any one person could ever attempt to consume.

Tavern 101 Grill and Tap House
28434 Roadside Drive  Agoura Hills, CA 91301
(818) 991-7227

“Adults Only” Offerings

101 Cider House

Some of the most interesting and unique cider this year is coming out of a dark corner in an unassuming industrial park in the Conejo Valley. A budding pioneer of the craft beer industry, Mark McTavish and the rest of his talented 101 Cider House team are self-proclaimed cider evangelists.

Sourced locally, their product is raw, made with natural ingredients and 100% fresh pressed juices. the end result is vibrant and daring and sure to knock your socks off.

101 Cider House
Tasting Room Hours: Thursday 5pm – 10pm, Saturday 1pm – 11pm, Sunday 1pm – 5pm
31111 Via Colinas, Westlake Village, CA 91362
(818) 851-9018

Sunland Vintage Winery

Michael and Debby Giovinazzo are making old school hip again with their throw-back vintages that conjure up thoughts of Old Italy and its robust yet delicate wines. Their award-winning Sunland Vintage label tickles the palate and their bright and cheery tasting room will have you coming back for more.

Sunland Vintage Winery
Tasting Room Hours: Thursdays & Fridays 6pm – 9pm, Saturdays 1pm – 6pm, Sundays 1pm – 5pm
1321 E Thousand Oaks Blvd. #108 Thousand Oaks, CA 91362
(805) 379-2250

Get Your Hike On in Newport Beach

A quick one hour jaunt south down the 405 freeway from Los Angeles, the sophisticated coastal town of Newport Beach, California offers more than you think. With miles and miles of scenic hiking, biking, surfing, over 400 local restaurants, and a laid back nightlife, its intoxicating charm will have you coming back for more.

Crystal Cove, Newport Beach [Photo Courtesy Visit Newport Beach]

Mommy Hiker’s Top 2 Favorite Newport Beach Hikes

One of the largest coastal wetlands in southern California, offering 1,000 acres of open space, the Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and Ecological Reserve is a mecca for birders, hikers, runners, bikers and picnickers. Classified as a “critical estuary,” its preservation is crucial to providing a safe haven for nearly 200 species of birds, and foraging, spawning and nursery habitat for numerous species of fish, such as halibut, croaker, white sea bass and barred sand bass. 
For breathtaking bluff-top trails, head over to the northwest side of the bay. If it’s jogging or a brisk walk you’re looking for, Back Bay Drive is a multi-use road that stretches 3 miles northwards along the east side of the Bay from the Back Bay Science Center at Shellmaker Road to Vista Point on the corner of Eastbluff Drive.
Avid cyclists can enjoy a 10-mile bike loop around the Bay which starts at Jamboree at San Diego Creek, and the more ambitious adventure seekers can tackle the 22-mile Mountains to Sea Trail, which runs from Weir Canyon north of Irvine Regional Park joins the Back Bay Loop at Jamboree Road and continues through to Shellmaker Road.
Divided into three beach areas, Reef Point, Pelican Point and Los Trancos, Crystal Cove Beach boasts 1,140 acres of majestic underwater beauty for snorkelers and scuba divers and white sand beaches for sunbathers to frolic. If water and sand isn’t quite what you’re looking for, head to El Moro Canyon located at the southernmost edge of the beach to explore 18 miles of pristine hiking, biking and horse trails.
Newbie surfers at Blackies Beach, Newport Beach [Photo Courtesy Visit Newport Beach]
On the northside of the Newport Pier is a special swath of sand called Blackies, known for its slower breaks it is the perfect spot for kids who are itching to get their toes wet in the sport of surfing.
Join over a million delight-filled viewers at the 107th Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade, the nation’s longest running lighted holiday boat parade, for five jam-packed nights on December 16-20, 2015.
December through April is prime grey whale watching season and Newport Beach is ranked as one of the top destinations to witness these magnificent creatures make their way down to the warmer breeding grounds of Mexico.
Stand Up Paddleboarders, Newport Beach [Photo Courtesy Visit Newport Beach]
From full moon paddles, to SUP movie nights, and sunset outings, take advantage of the gorgeous year round sunshine Newport Beach has to offer by taking the whole family out on a stand up paddleboard adventure.