Tag Archives: Oak Ridge Winery

Campground Review: Flag City RV Resort, Lodi, CA

IMG_3431Campground Review Summary

  • Name: Flag City RV Resort
  • Dates of stay: May 14 – 30, 2018
  • Location: 6120 W. Banner Rd, Lodi, CA 95242
  • Type of campground: Private / Independent
  • Cost: $45.47/night, biweekly rate
  • Additional fees: $2/night for visitor or pet (dog). No charge for cat.
  • Stay limit: none
  • Accepts mail / packages: yes
  • Cell reception:  ATT very good
  • Website: www.flagcityrvresort.com/
  • Pros: Clean, big-rig-friendly resort close to Lodi amenities
  • Cons: none

Full Review

Several years ago, Jeff and I participated in a few wine tasting classes at a Total Wine and More store near our South Florida home. During one of those classes, we were introduced to a great Reserve Ancient Vine  Zinfandel wine from Oak Ridge Winery that Jeff fell in love with. It was, and still is, his favorite wine of all time. When we looked up the winery, we found it was located not in the famed Napa or Sonoma regions, it was located in a small town we had never heard of – Lodi. For this reason, when we went on the road, Lodi was high on our list of destinations.

Flag City RV Resort is conveniently located just off of I-5 and across the road from both a Flying J and Pilot. Ample shopping, including Walmart, Target and Kohls, can be found in the town of Lodi, 5 miles down the road. San Francisco is within day-trip distance, if you don’t mind fighting the traffic.

The RV resort is big rig friendly with wide asphalt interior roads and long concrete pull-through site. Our site was fully long enough to park all of our vehicles, with no problem. Spacing between rigs is average for private resorts, and each site has its own picnic table on a concrete pad area. The areas between sites are either dirt/plantings or gravel. Some reviewers have complained about the dirt surface, but it wasn’t bothersome except for the one day it rained and got muddy.

All 180 sites are full hook up with 50/30 amp electric, water and sewer. Cable TV was included but we didn’t bother with so many over the air channels available plus our satellite TV. Wifi was also available, but our ATT hotspot was adequate for our needs. The utilities worked well, although a drop in water pressure was noticeable when the park was full, like over Memorial Day weekend. Even then, it was quite usable.

The resort is equipped with three spacious and clean bath houses and 3 laundry facilities. The laundry uses a card system that is purchased from the front office, and any unused card balance is reimbursed upon departure. We actually used the propane fill station at this park when we depleted our portable gas grill supply. The resort also has a lovely pool, hot tub, and club house area.

The office staff was very courteous and helpful. Because we stayed longer here than typical, I took advantage of that and did some shopping with Amazon. There was never a problem with package pickup. The office also provided coupons for free tastings at several wineries, including our favorite – Oak Ridge. Who could ask for more than that?

Even considering all the amenities, the average cost came in at around $45/night, a bit cheaper than we’ve found elsewhere in California.  It was well worth it.

Bottom Line: A reasonably-priced, big-rig-friendly RV resort with ample amenities, in the heart of Lodi wine country.


Lodi and its environs

We’ve been bouncing around the California central valley region and settled in Lodi for a couple of weeks. While here, we took care of some business such as dental work for Jeff and replacement of our failed rear air conditioner unit under warranty. It helps to stay put for a while in order to get those things done!

IMG_4007Lodi is a pleasant small town known for its vineyards – particularly those growing old vine zinfandel grapes. There are vines here over 100 years old and still producing! This area produces more grapes for wine making than Napa and Sonoma put together – in fact, some of those wineries source their grapes from Lodi. They just make the wine and charge a whole lot more for it! We found prices to be reasonable here – tastings run $5-10 and very nice wines can be had in the $20-30 range.

Jeff’s all time favorite wine is a Reserve Ancient Vine Zinfandel from Oak Ridge Winery, here in Lodi. In fact, that winery is the primary reason we put Lodi on our travel itinerary.  It just coincidentally happened that our RV park gave us a coupon for free tastings at Oak Ridge and 20% off wine purchase there! We made our pilgrimage and found Oak Ridge also makes other brands that we have tried and liked, such as “Old Soul” old vine Zinfandel. Now we know why we liked it! We used that coupon and stocked up. Other wineries we especially liked in this area include Drava Wines (makes a great Mourvedre) and St. Amant Winery  (really nice ruby and tawny Ports). There are a number of wineries here, so you could be tasting for quite a while!

img_3986.jpgUsing Lodi as a home base, we took some day trips to sights nearby, including the city of San Francisco. Here’s a parking tip if you can plan in advance – use the Park Whiz app. We booked a 12 hour parking spot at a hotel right at Fisherman’s Wharf for $22; their normal daily rate was $60!  I pre-booked a Big Bus Tour (saved 10%), and we spent the day touring the classic sights:  Chinatown, Fisherman’s Wharf, Golden Gate Bridge (and Park), and Haight AshburyIMG_3989 (Summer of Love) area. I had been to the city twice previously but did not remember the homeless problem being quite so … evident. It was disturbing to see so many homeless people sprawled on sidewalks, and two even gave a not-so-friendly single finger wave to the tour bus. San Francisco is an interesting historic town, but between the traffic, high prices, and belligerent homeless – it dampens my desire to visit there.

img_4012.jpgOff in the other direction toward the Sierra Nevada Mountains is the Marshall Gold Discovery Historic State Park. In 1848, James W. Marshall discovered gold in the tail race of the sawmill he was building. That discovery launched the California gold rush — a mass-migration of people flooding into the area, seeking their fortune. California became a State just 2 years later, due to the unprecedented increase in population and development.  The gold discovery site became a bustling town (Coloma) and the park includes buildings and historical exhibits dating from that era. Tours are given twice per day for the nominal fee of $3 per person. We were the only two that booked the 1 pm tour, so we had a private guide! It was fascinating to delve into this exciting time of history. Ironically, James Marshall wasn’t that great of a businessman and didn’t profit from the gold rush that he inadvertently started. He died penniless.