The American Camp Fire Lookout is located on top of a peak between the North Fork and South Fork of the Stanislaus where they join at the east end of New Melones Reservoir. The tower is no longer used, but what’s left of it is still standing. There are no 360 views from the ground, but the peak has great views especially to New Melones and the river canyon. The tower is visible from some of the peaks above Columbia.
This ride post has been archived to the Rides pages. Find it at: https://tuolumnebikes.wordpress.com/rides/mixed-paved-and-unpaved-rides/american-camp-fire-lookout/ or in the menus at Rides > Mixed Paved and Unpaved Rides > American Camp Fire Lookout
- Downside—Out-and-back, some washboarding on the steep sections of Italian Bar Road.
- Upside—Very scenic with a mix of pines, oak woodland, lake, river canyon, great views and tower at the end.
- Bring a good (better than Google) paper map of Stanislaus Forest Roads. See the page of Stanislaus Forest tips. Ride is in Columbia and Columbia SE quads.
- 21.4 miles out-and-back from Columbia to the tower
- About 3,100 feet total climb
- roads: paved 5 miles, dirt and gravel 16.4 miles
- terrain: mountainous
- tires: cross to mountain, most folks will prefer mountain
- seasons: all, with precautions for summer heat, possible winter snow.