Kelly Vaughn

Prescott National Forest, Prescott

Situated 15 minutes from downtown Prescott, Lynx Lake Campground may be an urban escape, but from the moment you enter the campground, you’ll feel as though you’re a million miles away. That’s mostly because the campground is home to junipers, pines and manzanitas, as well as large campsites — they’re designed for five people but could easily fit 10.

Look up, and you’ll see big sky, unobstructed by buildings or anything man-made. Lynx Lake, a half-mile down the road, is man-made but stocked with trout. It’s a perfect place to waste a little time fishing, boating or hanging out and watching the wildlife, which includes great blue herons, ospreys, javelinas and deer.

Trails, picnic areas and ramadas are plentiful, and individual sites are stocked with the standard grills and fire rings. If you’re not keen on cooking your own camp meals, you won’t have to travel far to find great food at one of Prescott’s many restaurants.

Elevation: 5,500 feet
Directions: From State Route 69 east of Prescott, turn right (south) onto Walker Road. Continue for 2.3 miles to the campground.
Information: Bradshaw Ranger District, Prescott National Forest, 928-443-8000 or
Season: April through October
Fee: $18 per night
Reservations: No
Amenities: Restrooms, Pets, Water