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“Avoid at All Costs”

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Bear River Lake Resort
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Pioneer
Reviewed 12 July 2009

Just returned from a 2 day camping trip at Bear River Lake. This place is terrible and the worst camping experience we've ever had.

To start off, mapquest and google maps have completely incorrect directions in a crucial spot telling you to go left on hwy 88 instead of making a right. We ended up driving 10 miles out of the way before calling and getting the correct directions from the office. The person we spoke with said they were aware of these sites giving incorrect directions. They said they've written to the sites about the incorrect directions and there is nothing else they could do. How about posting the correct directions on their website, since that is how we based our directions and they actually provide a link to mapquest. But no mention at all. In fact they just give the address of the campsite and you are forced to use an outside source for driving directions. Even the Garmin GPS system had the incorrect directions. This should have been a red flag before we even arrived.

Finally arrived and set up our tents and quickly realized this is not the place for tent camping as 95% of the sites were occupied by trailer or RVs. There are no fire rings except for a metal box that was leaning up against a table when we got there and no grills, eventhough the website stated each site had grills. When planning the trip we considered booking one of the "cabins" they listed on the website. The term cabin could not be used more loosely as these are nothing more than single wide trailers and the entire cabin section looked like a crowded trailer park.

There are no hiking trails around the campsite, so unless you are going to spend the entire time fishing or renting their equipment, there is really nothing to do here.

One of the most dissapointing parts of the experience was the staff. Whether it was calling for directions, checking in, renting kayaks, or buying firewood, everyone we spoke to and dealt with was unpleasant, unfriendly and not helpful. Only cared about taking our money which it became pretty obvious was what this place was all about. A very small bundle of firewood was $7.25, you could easily spend $100 on firewood at this place. The canoe and kayak rentals were average hourly prices ($10-$15 per hour), but when asked what was available no one there knew what they had and when we finally made decisions they ended up not having the amount of equipment they originally stated they had.

In summary, avoid this place at all costs. Unpleasant staff, expensive services, and terrible facilities. Although the surrounding area is beautiful, this place is not the way to enjoy it. I would reconmmend Wrights Lake or Jenkinson Lake for a great camping experience.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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8  Thank GrahamW58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (26)
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20 - 24 of 26 reviews

Reviewed 16 March 2007

I have been going to Bear River Lake Resort since 1985 (22 years). My parents after retirement found this place and kept there RV there for 1/2 year at a time. My oldest now 23 was going there since she was two and I would join them on the weekends. My family and I started going there after both my parents passed away and we always go by there favorite site and remember them. We enjoy our week there every August and have a special spot. We camp in a tent but our camping gear gets more and more civilized each year. We love it there and I can not see us ever not going there. We also camped (in a tent) in April or may two years ago. It was wet and there was some snow in shady areas. It rained all week long and was freezing. We had to make shelter where our table and fire was and would freeze when we went to take a shower. By and by that was our most favorite trip.

  • Stayed: August 2006, travelled with family
    • Value
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2  Thank Coleflips2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 February 2007

I love Bear River, I have been going since I was 3 months old! I wait a long time to go and the weekend is the highlight of my summer vacation. They have a lot of things like biking, camp fires and they have a full stocked store. It has stuff you might have forgotten at home like lighters and food. The campsites are wonderful, i suggest the group campsite. We have a group of about 40 people and need the room. We alway have a lot of tent space left over. We always have a great time with riding bikes all over and swimming. I suggest going during the summer when its still cold at night, but warm during the day. Like nice for a camp fire at night an good for a campfire and smores. During the day go swimming and fishing. I really recomend this place!

Stayed: February 2007
3  Thank kjgirl56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Newark, CA
11
Reviewed 3 July 2006

This place is one of a kind!

  • Stayed: July 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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1  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Sacromento, California
14
Reviewed 22 June 2006

I went to bear river lake resort in the summer. It was great, we rented a cabbin, and when we got their, it was a trailer, It had enough room to sleep 5 people, a small, but comfurtable kitchen. It also had a shower, and a bathroom. It was right next to the lake, so we fished every day. The fishing is great, I caught a 2 1/2 foot trout!!! What a great time. The other people are just too picky.

  • Stayed: June 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
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4  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Bear River Lake Resort

Address: 40800 State Highway 88, Pioneer, CA 95666-9114
Region: United States > California > Pioneer
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Pioneer
Number of rooms: 5
Also Known As:
Bear River Lake Hotel Pioneer

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