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Best Camping Spots In Colorado

Turquoise Lake Recreation Area

Best Places to Camp for Free in Colorado

With a total of eight campgrounds, Turquoise Lake has a ton of different options to choose from.

The campgrounds are all set alongside or at least near the 1,800 acre lake surrounded by a thick evergreen forest and some of Colorados most spectacular mountains on all sides.

Molly Brown Campground and Baby Doe Campground are two of our favorites in the area.

Dont forget to check out the 12-mile bike trail that starts in nearby Leadville and loops through Mineral Belt. Its a fairly easy trek that the whole family will enjoy.

As the name implies, this stunning Colorado campground is for tent campers only.

With just six campsites total, Granite Tent Camp is perfect for those that love privacy and solitude while camping. All of the campsites are well spaced. Most are located near the river.

Camp here and youll hear the river sing its soothing lullaby at night. The mornings can be a joy as you listen to the lunkers splash and leap.

Its said that many of the lunkers migrate from nearby Harmel Ranch Resorts private stretch of the river.

Learn more about Granite Tent Camp.

Cache La Poudre Scenic Byway

Campgrounds run nearly the entire length from Fort Collins to Walden.

This national scenic byway follows the Cache La Poudre River for most of the way, so the scenery and recreation are spectacular. Rafting is common in parts, and there is plenty of other activities do in the Roosevelt National Forest.

The 101-mile byway is fine for all cars and takes about 3 hours, so any bargain car rental will do. If renting a car for your trip, most 2WD cars will be fine for driving around Colorados scenic summer roads. However, if youll be enjoying the forest roads, pay attention to its ground clearance the most, and opt for something higher.

There is lots of dispersed camping if you know where to look. There arent any sites on the byway itself, but numerous side roads hold campsites in the Roosevelt N.F.

Best Camping Sites:

Dispersed camping is a bit tricky on this byway since there are no sites directly on the highway. But there is still plenty. South of Walden, there are lots of free sites, minutes from the mostly ghost town of Gould. Take CR 21 a mile or so back to the national forest.

Check out this Roosevelt Ranger District PDF map of Canyon Lakes North to identify more dispersed camping .

Activities: Boating, Fishing, Hiking, Horseback Riding, OHV, Rafting

Nearby Towns:

Getting There:

Lakes, high mountains and lots of camping.

Two campgrounds are reservable at Twin Lakes and one on the Aspen side of the pass. Dispersed camping be found in the hills above Twin Lakes.

Morefield Campground Mesa Verde National Park

The ancient structures at this World Heritage Site inspire people of all ages

The cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde are awe-inspiring

| Destination Website | Amenities: full RV hookups, gas station, RV dump station, laundry, showers, camp store

The Morefield Campground inside Mesa Verde National Park allows tent and RV camping. The store, showers, and other services are located in the campground village, which you can drive or walk to from your site. There are hikes you can start right at the campground, and the cliff dwellings are just a short drive away.

Be Prepared: Every time we camp, we get hit with at least one rainstorm. I bring this rain jacket every time, and its kept me dry even in monsoon-like storms.

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Best Places To Camp In Colorado In Summer

Colorado is a great state for camping, especially in the summer. The weather is warm and there are plenty of activities to enjoy outdoors. Here are some of the best places to camp in Colorado during the summer:1. Rocky Mountain National Park This popular national park offers stunning scenery, hiking trails, wildlife watching opportunities, and more. There are several campgrounds located within the park boundaries, so you can choose one that suits your needs.2. Mueller State Park This state park is located in the mountains west of Denver and offers beautiful views, fishing lakes, hiking trails, and more. There are both primitive and developed campgrounds available within the park boundaries.3. Eleven Mile State Park This state park is home to Eleven Mile Reservoir, which is a popular spot for boating, fishing, and swimming in the summer months. There are several different campgrounds located around the reservoir, so you can find one that fits your needs.4. golden Gate Canyon State Park This state park is located just outside of Denver and offers stunning views of the Rockies as well as hiking trails, wildlife watching opportunities, and more.

Hidden Valley Campground Gunnison National Forest

13 Best Camping Spots Near Colorado Springs, Colorado

Most people who visit Lake City come to climb the fourteeners, fish or boat Lake San Cristobal or drive the famous four-wheel-drive Alpine Loop. It gets crowded. But drive farther south up Slumgullion Pass and turn on Forest Road 788 youll find quiet and solitude among the many free campgrounds that line Cebolla Creek. This primitive tent campground is the prettiest, tucked in a steep valley and barely visible from the road. Dont fret if its full, there are several more campgrounds along this route.

While youre there: Take a hike up the Cannibal Plateau Trail. It was here in 1874 that Alferd Packer and his companions became snowbound and cannibalism ensued. Dont forget to pack a lunch.

  • Season: June-September

Read Also: Camping Near South Fork Co

Deadman Road In Red Feather Lakes

Located in the Rocky Mountains, an hour away and 45 miles west of Fort Collins, Red Feather Lakes is an outdoor playground open year-round. Red Feather Lakes is more of a small community than just an area in the Roosevelt National Forest. With its beautiful natural scenery of hiking trails, mountainous terrains, and wildlife, it is not difficult to see why Red Feather lakes are one of the most famous dispersed camping areas in Colorado.

Although there are many dispersed camping sites in Red Feather Lakes, Deadman Road is one of the campers favorite hot spots. Deadman Road is also open year-round and is easily accessible by all licensed vehicle types. This might, however, be limited in adverse conditions. Dead Man Road is reported to have easily accessible roads most months of the year, cell phone coverage, and allows both vehicle and tent camping.

South Rim Campground Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park

A bare bones campground within walking distance of the Visitor Center

| Destination Website | Amenities: RV electric hookups, vault toilets, potable water in summer, staff or volunteer host on-site in summer

The South Rim Campground is the larger of the two campgrounds at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. Its also the only one open year-round.

Loop B has electric hookups for RVs, and the camping sites are partially shaded by oaks and bushes. You can reserve campsites from mid-May to mid-September, and the rest of the year, sites are first come, first-served.

The national park is one of Colorados most incredible places, and youll be awestruck by the canyon carved by the Gunnison River over millions of years!

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Of The Best Places To Go Camping In Colorado

Colorado is home to some of the best camping in the world.

Whether you prefer lakes, rivers, mountains, or even desert, theres a Colorado campground thats perfect for you.

Weve done the legwork for you and narrowed down your options to just 30 of the absolute best campgrounds to help you plan the perfect family camping trip.

Now, lets dive right in!

Why not rent an RV for your Colorado camping trip? Save $50 on an RV rental from Outdoorsy with our code: BEYOND50

Lone Duck Campground Pikes Peak Area

THE BEST CAMPGROUNDS IN COLORADO (HINT: IT’S A KOA CAMPING SPOT)

A family campground at the base of Pikes Peak

This region is full of beautiful views!

| Destination Website | Amenities: full RV hookups, pool, Wi-Fi, game room, laundry, pet-friendly, showers

This campground is in Cascade at the bottom of Pikes Peak, one of the best places to visit in Colorado. Youll be in a great spot to access hiking trails.

Youll also be just a short drive from Colorado Springs, so you can spend a day exploring all the things to do there as well! Lone Duck has RV and tent sites, plus cabins to rent.

Looking for hiking ideas? Check out my list of the Best Hikes Near Colorado Springs!

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What Kind Of Camping Is Available

Youll find a variety of camping options close to Garden of the Gods and Colorado Springs. There are RV hookup sites that have so many amenities and services , itll feel like you actually did choose an Airbnb and not the camping option. Of course, there are also sites for traditional tent camping with the bonus of nearby restrooms. Or if youre really ready to rough it and experience nature, you can choose a camping option in the national forest that doesnt even have a proper tent site.

Here are some great places to camp near Garden of the Gods:

Pearl Lake Campgrounds Colorado

Pearl Lake State Park Campground is situated close to the town of Hahns Peak, north of Steamboat Springs. The peaceful lake is named for Pearl Hartt, who was the wife of John Kelly Hartt, a pioneer sheep rancher.

The campground nestles in a narrow valley at the foot of Farewell Mountain and offers glorious scenery and first-class fishing. On summer mornings, you can emerge from your tent to the sound of huge trout leaping out of the water to catch insects, and as you cook your breakfast, youll look up in awe at the snow-dusted mountain towering above.

The Pearl Lake campground is managed in conjunction with the larger Steamboat Lake grounds further north, but its smaller and quieter here. The lower loop of the campground includes sites 24 to 38, which are lakeside pitches, and this area is consequently the most popular. The upper loop has sites 1 through 23 and is set on a gentle hill, only 200 yards from the lakeshore.

From here, you can hike a short trail that takes you to the dam, which connects with the six-mile Coulton Creek Forest Service trail. Theres also a boat ramp at the southern tip of the lake. Note that motorized boats are not permitted on the lake, and wakeless boating only is allowed. Anglers must use either lures or flies and may only take two 18-inch trout per day.

Sites must be pre-booked and cost $18 per night. Yurts sleep six at the cost of $70 per night at the time of writing. Note that campers also need a vehicle pass or an Annual Parks Pass .

Recommended Reading: Henry Horton State Park Camping

You Cant Go Wrong When Camping In Colorado

For either dispersed or designated camping in Colorado, youll want to stay aware of wildlife in the area especially bears. Research seasonal restrictions for your camping area, especially for building fires, or campground/road closures due to snow.

Lastly, youll always want to check the weather to make sure you have the right clothing and equipment for where youre going!

Colorado is home to so many beautiful options for a camping trip, and you can find plenty of the best campgrounds that are nearby to your interests. Whether youre looking to hike, fish, mountain bike, shop, check out art, or any other activities, theres a camping spot in Colorado where you can stay to do that.

Before you head out into the wilderness, download our favorite outdoor apps to make the most of your time outside. From finding camp spots to the best hiking and biking locations and more, here are our favorite outdoor adventure apps >

Angel Of Shavano Campgrounds

Best Campgrounds in Colorado &  the Rocky Mountain States

Those looking to truly get away from it all will want to add the Angel of Shavano campgrounds to their list of outdoor destinations. Located inside the San Isabel National Forest this campground has 20 individual campsites and is rarely ever crowded. This is due in part to its remote nature, which requires a three-hour drive from Denver just to get to the location. The upside is that this usually makes it extremely easy to reserve a spot, even during the busier summer months.

Situated along the 486-mile Colorado Trail, Angel of Shavano offers excellent hiking and mountain biking, as well as fishing in the North Fork Reservoir. The thickly-wooded national forest is also a beautiful retreat, offering plenty of solitude and tranquility for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of modern life. Lacking in accessible camp sites, Angel of Shavano is not the best option for wheelchair or mobility aid users.

Also Check: Free Camping Canyon Lake Tx

Best Places To Camp In Colorado

Our research is editorially independent but we may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

With so much breathtaking mountain scenery, its no surprise that Colorado offers practically an endless number of amazing places to camp, but with so many great sites, how do you decide just where to go? This list features the best of the best, making that decision just a little bit easier.

YOU’RE ALL SET!

Located five miles southwest of downtown Aspen up Maroon Creek Road, the Maroon Bells are one of Colorados most iconic landscapes as a twin set of 14ers that mirror off Maroon Lake. There are three campgrounds set within the woods by West Maroon Creek: Silver Queen, Silver Bar and Silver Bell Silver Bell offers walk-in sites that are great for tent camping, which is available from about late May through late September. If you want to enjoy the most breathtaking scenery without the big crowds, try to come during the second half of September when you may be able to enjoy the brilliant golden leaves, set against the snow-dusted Bells. The campgrounds include water and trash facilities as well as vault toilets reservations are a must and can be made through recreation.gov.

Honorable Mention: Black Tree Resort

The tagline for the Black Tree Resort is Where roughing it isnt so rough and that is for sure. If you is not so excited about camping they might be thrilled to try Glamping . Share the same outdoor experiences but also sleep on a comfortable queen size bed and have your own private bathroom. You wont be having charred hot dogs and canned beans because all the meals are provided as well served on plates with cloth napkins to boot. Check it out for something a little different.

Black Tree Resort

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Best Fall Road Trips In Colorado

September 27, 2022GoCampPlaces to Go, Travel Guides

If youre lucky enough to live in the Mile-High State , now is the perfect time to plan your camper van road trip to see the changing leaf colors in Colorado. Fall road trips are special because there are usually less crowds on the trails. If you enjoy a serene escape from town, you should definitely put a fall road trip on your calendar.

Colorado aspens usually begin their transition from green to gold in mid-September through mid-October, but it can vary from season to season. With Colorado being home to the largest number of aspen trees in the United States, its well worth the effort to see the foliage transform.

Here are the six best road trips in Colorado to see the fall colors in your camper van rental. We also included unique tourist stops, hikes, and camping spots nearby.

Plan on taking a few days to see as much of Colorados high country as you can before its too late!

The 8 Best Campgrounds In Colorado

Our FAVORITE Camping Spots in Colorado for Van Life!

By Contributor | March 25, 2022

Please double check what’s open before your trip and follow all local vax & mask guidelines to keep yourself and others safe! Also, ads are how we pay our bills and keep our blog free for you to enjoy. We also use affiliate links if you make a purchase through them, we may receive a small commission at no cost to you.

Grand mountains. Rustling plains. Towering sand dunes. Spectacular lakes. Nope, were not talking about the entire United States: you can find absolutely all of this stunning scenery right in Colorado! From the grandeur of Rocky Mountain National Park to the winding roads of the Million Dollar Highway and the breathtaking expanse of theBlue Mesa Reservoir, Colorado is a stunning outdoor playground. And the best way to get to know its vast expanses of wilderness is to go camping!

Whether youre a casual camper or a seasoned backcountry lover, there are limitless opportunities for camping spots in Colorado. Which is, honestly, a little overwhelming.

So, weve teamed up with Lyndsie, a Colorado native who has lived and camped her whole life in this beautiful state, to create this list of the 8 best places to camp in Colorado, plus all the tips you need to plan a fun, safe camping trip! Because a safe camper is a happy camper, as I have never said before in my life but will definitely start saying now because I love me a terrible Dad joke.

Take it away, Lyndsie!

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