With the travel restrictions in place due to COVID-19, many families are staying close to home and have turned to camping as an alternative to other types of vacation. Additionally, RV dealerships are seeing an increase in sales by 30 percent over last year. With this influx of new campers and several months of closed campgrounds this past spring, it has been challenging to secure a camping reservation for this season.
Sierra Nevada Journeys has come up with a creative alternative to help get families outdoors safely and you don’t need to own an RV or tent.
Welcome to Family Camp at Grizzly Creek Ranch in Portola, California. Situated on 525 acres in the Plumas National Forest, Sierra Nevada Journeys’ Grizzly Creek Ranch has expansive open spaces and is an ideal setting for families to get outdoors and spend time in nature.
Family Camp will be hosted over five different weekends in September and October. It is set up where your family or quarantine friends (8-to-12 people) have exclusive use of a cabin — total of 12 cabins available each weekend. Your group can also participate in various camp activities — social distancing style.
A couple of parents who have attended our family programs, shared their enthusiasm for this year’s expansion of Family Camp.
“You mean I could relive summer sleepover camp WITH my kids? You mean I could get in that camping trip I promised them without having to pitch a tent or cook on a camp stove? Sign. Me. Up,” said Lynnette Bellin, a Reno mom with two children that have attended Sierra Nevada Journeys’ camps.
Susie Hodges, a parent who attended a weekend camp last year, said she appreciated being unplugged and that everything was planned for her family.
“We had fantastic weekend with Sierra Nevada Journeys! They took care of very last detail so that I could just relax and enjoy time with my child instead of being the planner in chief. I also really appreciated the encouragement to keep everyone off devices. It was great to see adults and kids alike enjoying nature and one another’s company,” said Hodges.
We’ll be having picnic lunches and barbecues for dinners; families have designated picnic tables at their cabin or can dine inside their cabin. Activities include archery, kayaking, a nature hike, and low challenge course elements. Also, we’re planning evening programs like trivia and time around the campfire – using physical distancing measures. Families will have time to play basketball, volleyball, gaga and 9 square in the air. It is a fun and stress-free way to camp.
“We’ve been hosting Family Camp over Labor Day weekend for the past eight years and it has been a huge success,” said Eaton Dunkelberger, CEO of Sierra Nevada Journeys. “Unfortunately, due to travel and field trip restrictions with schools, we won’t be seeing as many kids through our outdoor school at Grizzly Creek Ranch this fall. On a positive note, it does allow us to open the camp for families who’ve been quarantined together and expand Family Camp.”
Family Camp Dates:
September 4 - 7, 2020; Labor Day Weekend (4 Days, 3 Nights)
September 11 – 13, 2020 (3 Days, 2 Nights)
September 25 – 27, 2020 (3 Days, 2 Nights)
October 2 - 4, 2020 (3 Days, 2 Nights)
October 16 - 18, 2020 (3 Days, 2 Nights)
By bringing together your quarantine buddies, we’re able to safely open camp by adhering to local health agency guidelines. However, there are a few things to take into consideration while planning your weekend. Based on current restrictions from Plumas County Public Health Agency, we will only be able to serve groups whose participants reside in the following counties:
Nevada: Washoe, Douglas, Lyon, Storey, and Carson
California: Yolo, Sacramento, Sutter, El Dorado, Placer, Nevada, Yuba, Sierra, Plumas, and Lassen.
Also, campers are to stay on campus during their visit. Sierra Nevada Journeys is required to follow California State and local county requirements of personal protective equipment (PPE) for participants and employees; that means bring your mask.
You can learn more about Family Camp by visiting sierranevadajourneys.org/family-camp.