[easyazon-image align="center" asin="0929591739" locale="us" height="75" src="http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61KviEmEq-L._SL75_.jpg" width="52"]If you are driving the scenic byway through Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument in Utah, Calf Creek Falls BLM campground is a nice resting place. While I have read from other campers that's it's not the ideal place to camp, I will tell you otherwise. We found a nice shady spot to park ourselves all day. My kids played and splashed in the creek for hours. The creek is very refreshing on hot days. My wife lounged by the creek with a nice book and rested most of the day. I consider this campground a little oasis in the desert.
The campground is primitive. It offers stove pipe outhouses and water. This is all I ever need. The less the better. More ammenities means more crowds. The BLM manages the campground. BLM and cheap camping are usually synomonous. Last time I camped there, it was less than $10. It's first come-first served. No reservations. Be there early as it usually fills up during thes summer months.
There is a lot of dispersed BLM camping in the area if you pull off on gravel roads. Travel at your own risk as the BLM wants to keep the area as primitive as possible. If you plan on dispersed camping, check with the local BLM office for specific rules and regulations. Never leave anything behind. No trace camping is the rule.
What really made the trip for me was the run to Lower Calf Creek Falls early in the morning. It's less than 3.5 miles each way, so I managed to run to the falls and back in less than 90 minutes. It's supposed to be a 90 minute walk each way. If you do the hike early in the morning, you avoid all the heat. The steep canyon walls shade you from any direct sunlight.
The colors of the canyon walls with the morning sunrise was beautiful. The evening sun set would have been equally as beautiful.
Bring your camera and pack some food and water. You will not be dissappointed with the hike. It's a moderate to difficult hike for most people. If you are in shape, it's easy.
Get the Benchmark Road Atlas from Amazon to help navigate through all the byways and highways of Utah. I get a Benchmark Atlas for every state that I travel in. They pay for themselves in a day if you disperse camp.