South Ridge Yellow Post Sites

San Bernardino National Forest

Free Camping Near Idyllwild, CA

South Ridge Yellow Post Sites are a series of three (3) campsites, each marked by a yellow post, all situated along Forest Road 5S11, in the southwest portion of Idyllwild. These sites were designated by the San Jacinto Ranger District of San Bernardino National Forest as free campsites. Each campsite is restricted to a single party of campers, with no more than eight (8) persons and two vehicles. All sites are first come, first serve, no reservations.

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San Bernardino National Forest, San Jacinto Ranger District

San Jacinto Ranger District Office:
Tel: (909) 382-2921


GPS: 33.73665, -116.70444 (Site #1)
Reservations: first-come, first-served
Camping Fee: none
Maximum Stay: 14 days in any 30-day period
Amenities: Fire rings, picnic tables


San Bernardino NF Visitor Guide, published by USFS, 2018

South Ridge Yellow Post Sites, San Bernardino NF, San Jacinto Ranger District

These three Yellow Post sites are suitable only for cars, vans, pickup trucks, not motorhomes. 4WD is advised because of steep inclines and soft dirt in places. You can tow a trailer up here, but only small trailers (no larger than 20ft), as long as you have 4WD.

Site #1 – Small site. The easiest site to get into because it’s the closest to the Tahquitz Rd, however, the forest road up the ridge is still steep, still dirt, and still bumpy.

Site #2 – Another small site further up the road.

Site #3 – A much larger site, but requires about 1 mile of driving along steep inclines, dirt road (soft in places), rutted and bumpy.

How Crowded: These sites are extremely popular due to close proximity to Idyllwild. Your best bet is to get between Monday and Thursday, before the evening.

How Noisy or Peaceful: Site #3 has lots of peace and quiet due to being at the end of Forest Road 5S11. The other two sites get a fair amount of cars and hikers passing by.

Cellular Phone Signal: Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile all seem to come in fair to average.

Road Conditions: Forest Road 5S11 is all dirt, soft in places, heavily rutted and bumpy. We don’t advise attempting this road during rains. We don’t advise towing a trailer unless its small and you have 4WD.

Amenities Within Campground: Just picnic tables and fire rings.

Cost of Camping: It’s free to camp at these sites, first come, first serve.

Campfires: Campfires are allowed during certain times when fire restrictions have been lifted. Otherwise, the entire State of California requires a campfire permit, which are free, and can be obtained online from CalFire Campfire Website.

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