We took our girls camping for the first time ever in early July. We were a bit nervous about the whole thing, but it ended up going really well!
We camped at Kalaloch Campground where people have the option of tent or RV camping or there’s also a nearby lodge that has a bit more comfier accommodations. Our campsite was B001 and was very close to the restrooms and cleaning area, which we appreciated for the most part overall. We were a short walk from the beach trail; although if we ever go back, I’d love to camp at one of the spots right on the cliff closest to the beach so we could catch the beautiful sunsets right from our campsite. We booked our site back in February since summer fills up quickly.
We tent camped and picked up the majority of our camping items from our local REI Garage Sale or from Costco. While Aaron set up the tent, I took the girls down to the beach. Even in July, it was still rather cool on the coast (it was in the mid ‘6o’s our entire visit) and we made sure to bring layers for the girls.
The beach was gorgeous and the girls loved playing in the sand for a bit before heading back up to our site and grabbing Aaron to come join us for a walk on the beach.
While on our walk, we came across the “Tree of Life”, which you can read more about here. It was amazing to see in person! I can’t believe it’s still alive and standing and I wonder how much longer it’ll last.
Back at our campsite, we made a really simple dinner of roasted bratwursts with s’mores for dessert. Then, it was back down to the beach one more time before turning in for the night!
The girls did fairly well sleeping in the tent the first night. They were so excited so they took awhile to fall asleep and then woke a couple of times in the night, but overall I think it was pretty successful! We tried to follow a somewhat normal bedtime routine and since we let them stay up so late, we all went to bed at the same time the first night.
In the morning, they participated in a fun Junior Ranger program that the National Parks offer. The girls and I learned all about sea otters and other native animals and earned a couple of badges after filling out a couple of workbooks. It was such a fun program for them and we’ll definitely be checking them out at other National Parks that we visit!
Ruby Beach is just north of Kalaloch and is probably the most famous beach in the area. It’s well known for its beautiful haystack rocks, tidepools, and driftwood.
We spent several hours at Ruby Beach wandering around while the girls splashed through little rivers and eventually made our way over to the tidepools.
The tidepools were fantastic! We saw several starfish (both purple and orange ones), sea anemones, and lots of mussels! Just a reminder, if you ever visit tidepools, please try and leave the sea creatures as undisturbed as possible. This is their home and it’s far better for them and the environment to enjoy with just our eyes so that hopefully future generations can also enjoy the beautiful tide pools as well (to go along with that- make sure you pack out any trash that you might have with you. Garbage cans are available back near the parking lot).
We loved Ruby Beach and I’m so glad we made the visit, even though it was fairly “crowded”. Although we got one of the last parking spots, once you got down to the beach, it never felt too cramped (but maybe that’s because I grew up going to Southern CA beaches…) and we were able to enjoy plenty of space to ourselves.
Kalaloch Beach 4
The last beach we visited was Beach 4, on our way back to our campsite. The trail down was a bit steep at the end, but doable. The beach itself was beautiful. We were one of the few people there and enjoyed the numerous tidepools. We even saw a seal out playing in the waves!
It would be hard to say which beach we liked better out of Ruby Beach and Beach 4. Both were beautiful. I loved the haystack rocks at Ruby Beach, but it was nice having Beach 4 almost all to ourselves. The tidepools were excellent at both locations.
Our last morning consisted of us packing everything up and making sure we were checked out by 11 am (harder than we expected with two little ones).
We really enjoyed our first camping trip with our girls. The location was fantastic and there was more than enough to do and see for the two days we were there. We would definitely love to come back again soon!