Middle Creek Campground
Comments: There a $8 fee per campsite per night. Mendocino National Forest, so 1/2 price with Golden Age Passport.
Elevation: 2,000 to 5,000 feet.
Facilities: 3 outhouses, several water spigots, fire rings.
Distance from I-5: 69 miles.
Short version: Take Interstate 5 to Williams. Take Hwy 20 exit (one mile past the Williams exit) and proceed 60 miles to Upper Lake. At Upper Lake, turn right on Mendenhall Avenue (one block past Main Street). Proceed north and east (this is also called Road 301 and/or Elk Mountain Road) and, after one mile (at the Ranger Station), turn left onto Elk Mountain Road and proceed 7.6 miles to the Middle Creek Campground on the right (do not take the left fork to Forest Road NF16N08).
Step-by-step: I-5 north to Williams, Exit 578; left/west 2.1 miles through town (E St.) onto SR-20; SR-20 west 35.5 miles to intersection with SR-53 in Clearlake Oaks; SR-20 west another 25 miles to intersection with Mendenhall Ave. in Upper Lake (next street after Main St.) (there is a sign there for Ranger Station). Turn right and go north and then east 9/10ths of a mile on Mendenhall Ave. to the Ranger Station and stop sign; turn left onto Elk Mountain Rd.; then North on Elk Mountain Rd. 7.6 miles to the Middle Creek Campground on the right (near the base of the mountain). There are 20 organized campsites in this campground. If they are all full, the Ranger says you'll have to go to Deer Valley or Penny Pines Campgrounds farther north (the gravel area is day-use staging area only).
Per US Forest Service website: Located 8 miles north of Upper Lake on County Road 301 (Forest Road M-1). Lat. 39° 15' 09.46080", Long. 122° 57' 01.76399".
You can download a trail map at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb5145212.pdf