Oakes’ family outings are favorite RV trips

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Claudia and Jim Oakes of San Bernardino, Calif., frequently use their 2000 19-foot Salem travel trailer for family outings in the San Bernardino National Forest – San Gorgonio Wilderness area.

For more than ten years, one of their favorite destinations has been the Barton Flats campground.  It is located 36 miles northeast of San Bernardino; and within 25 miles of Big Bear Lake.

For the past two years, the Oakes’ extended family has spread across five camping sites.  “Last year my son, Jack, his wife, Judy, and I cooked breakfast for 42 people,” says Claudia.

“The real beauty of this is that it’s close to us,” Claudia continues. “It’s less than an hour away (from San Bernardino) and we’re at 6,000 feet.  All in all it is a great week with cool and comfortable tempretures when the valley below is doing triple digits.

“My parents were the first campers to stay in that campground when the ranger opened it up in 1935,” says Claudia. “We’ve camped this area my whole life and love it.”

Activities include hiking trails of all levels, movies and programs in the amphitheater, and Jenks Lake is nearby for swimming and fishing. The visitors center opens for the 2010 summer season on June 3 (Thursday-Sunday). Facilities include flush toilets, showers and a dump station.

For more specific information on the Barton Flats campground and reservations, click here.  For camping information in the San Bernardino National Forest click here.

Photo: Top: The Oakes’ grandson, Curren, then 5, stands in the doorway of the Oakes’ 2000 19-foot Salem travel trailer. Courtesy of Claudia Oakes. Bottom: Santa Ana River by Oscar Hendrix; source: Barton Flats Camp Association.

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