Grand Junction Koa Holiday
Want to stay in the heart of Grand Junction? The Grand Junction KOA Holiday is a compact RV park packed full with amenities youve come to expect in a KOA, like a playground for the kids as well as mini-golf. The best part of staying here, however, is the ease of access to all of the recreation that Grand Junction has to offer.
- Closest Town: Grand Junction
- Specs: 50+ full hookup pull-thru, back-in, and tent camping sites, cabins also available
- Amenities: Showers, restrooms, dog runs, laundry, dump station, playground, mini-golf
- Reservations: Yes, at KOA.com
- Address: 2819 US-50, Grand Junction, CO 81503
- Directions: From Grand Junction, use US-50 E to travel a little over 3 miles. From there, the Grand Junction KOA will be on your rightmake a right to enter.
Colorado Dispersed Camping Rules And Regulations
As mentioned above, its extremely important to respect our public lands.
Although national forests and BLM land have slightly different dispersed camping rules, one important rule pertains to both always follow the Leave No Trace principles.
These basically boil down to disturbing the land as little as possible. Leave your campsite even cleaner than when you found it. Properly dispose of human waste . Avoid off-limits or environmentally-sensitive areas.
Like much of the American West, wildfire season in Colorado is brutal. Always check on current fire restrictions and please be very careful with campfires almost 85% of wildfires are started by humans.
Finally, respect all dispersed camping stay limits. In most national forests and BLM land, this is limited to 14 or 16 days in the same location .
How To Find Dispersed Campsites In Colorado
Most dispersed camping sites are not listed online, and the few that are listed are often overrun by crowds. Part of the fun of dispersed camping comes from the excitement of searching for the right site, and not having to deal with reservations online. I recommend starting by picking a general area you want to camp in. Use Google Maps to identify roads in the area easily accessible from the highway.
I recommend bringing a 4WD vehicle if possible as many of these roads are in poor condition.Once you have a list of roads, program them into your GPS and head out to the mountains. Drive along the road and keep an eye out for campsites. You may wish to stop and hike around, as there may be better sites located down a trail or turn off away from the main road. When picking a site, look for areas without dead trees, which are a common falling hazard. Flat ground is better for tents, but avoid depressions that collect rainwater.
In some areas like Montezuma Road and Guanella Pass dispersed camping is not allowed or requires a permit or reservation. While there are usually roadsigns in the area that say this, it is ultimately your responsibility to know where you can and cannot camp. Check online at the Forest Service website to see a list of areas with dispersed camping regulations.
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Best Free Camping Incolorado
While the Western United States are filled with seemingly endless opportunities to find beautiful, free camping, few states do it quite as well as Colorado.
From desert cliff-dwelling to the Rocky Mountains’ abundance of forests, and beyond to the Front Range including Denver and Fort Collins, finding free a free place to camp is not just about saving a buck it’s about living within the most splendid scenery the state has to offer.
Dispersed camping in the Centennial State is downright prolific throughout the dozen or so national forests and grasslands within the state’s borders. Are you looking for camping spots near Steamboat Springs? Forest roads and mountain passes galore await. Need beautiful free camping near Denver? Idaho Springs is only about a half-hour from town, yet filled with places to go mountain biking, tent camping, or enjoy your national forest.
See a map of all free camping in Colorado.
Area : Jones Pass Near Empire Colorado
Looking for some dispersed camping in Colorado a bit closer to the Front Range Denver area? Consider the road up to Jones Pass near Empire, Colorado. The road is open each summer and is well-maintained by the national forest service so most cars can make the drive.
There are dozens of great camping sites along the road on both the east and west sides of the pass itself. At the top there is a large parking area so you can stop and enjoy the view from the 12,454 foot pass. I recommend a night of acclimation before camping in this area.
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James M Robb Colorado River State Park Island Acres Section
If you want to be close to the water, head over to this state park. You can book online to ensure you have all of the electrical hookups you need, and the park is located off I-70 near Palisade. Just be sure to book your site ahead of time during the busy summer months, as space fills up fast.
If youre able to visit during the off-season, the park is far less crowded.
Highline Lake Campground Co
The quaint, cozy Highline Lake Campground is worth a visit when you rent an RV in western Colorado. Just outside of Grand Junction, this amazing Loma campground sits on the edges of Highline Lake within the scenic Highline Lake State Park. Stunning views of the Rocky Mountains and an abundance of nature parks in the area are why so many people choose to rent an RV near Highline Lake Campground.
When you select this rustic state-run RV park as your temporary vacation home, youll have the pleasure of choosing from 31 peaceful, private sites for your campervan rental. There are not too many luxuries to speak of in this simple park, so electric hookups are
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Where To Get Supplies
Colorado National Monument is a vast area with no supplies or services available within the park . This means it is extremely important that you enter the monument well-stocked on food, water , gas, and any other necessities you may need while camping.
Visitors entering Colorado National Monument through the West Entrance can get supplies in the nearby town of Fruita. The most convenient place to get food and other supplies is the City Market, located just a five-minute drive from the West Entrance of the monument. There are a handful of gas stations off Highway 340 on the way into Colorado National Monument.
Visitors entering Colorado National Monument via the East Entrance should stock up in Grand Junction. The Alta Convenience is the closest option for snacks and gas, but there are several grocery stores, gas stations, and other services a bit further in town.
The Lost Creek Wilderness
The Lost Creek Wilderness is home to some of the best camping in Colorado while the snow remains high. The area surrounding Segments 3 and 4 on the Colorado Trail is closed for mountain bikers. There are many beautiful wooded surroundings and rocky outcrops for exploration.
The wilderness is one of the paradises for hikers thanks partly to the fact that they were closed in part to vehicles due partly to the natural beauty of the region and rugged terrain. This place is a good place to camp in the spring and fall.
- Best seasons : Summer, Fall
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Rifleman Phillips Group Campground
This lovely piece of real estate consists of only one large group campsite, accommodating 75 people. The elevation is 8,800 of high alpine forest, so youll be afforded a delightful experience of the senses and privacy for your group. It is restricted to tent camping only, so no travel trailers or RVs.
- Closest town: Black Hawk , Golden
- Specs: 1 group campground up to 75 people, tent camping only Open from May thru October, weather pending
- Amenities: Primitive sites with tables and fire rings, dispersed camping areas, potable pump water, vault toilet, no electric coin showers and laundry, and campfire programs available at nearby Reverends Ridge Campground
- Recreation: There are a couple of hiking trails nearby, which wind into the forests and take you to some cool places. On the routes are Frazer Meadow, Dudes Fishing Hole, Forgotten Valley, and City Lights Ridge.
- Reservations: at cpwshop.com call 800-244-5613 up to 6 months in advance
- Address: Rifleman Philips Campground Rd, Black Hawk, CO 80422
- Directions: Take CO-119 nearly 9 miles north of Black Hawk and make a right onto Gap Rd. Follow that 4.2 miles to the Rifleman Phillips Campground Rd.
Some Of My Favorite Areas For Dispersed Camping In Colorado
Over the past five years I have stumbled upon some great locations for dispersed camping. Thse six areas have a large number of camping sites, but be warned as they get busy on the weekend. Your best bet at finding a quiet area is to go exploring yourself along some national forest and BLM roads in the public lands nearest you.
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How Exactly Does Dispersed Camping In Colorado Work
If you have only camped in a campground before it is normal to wonder how this works. Essentially, dispersed camping is a first-come, first-serve system on most National Forest and Bureau of Land Management public lands. In most areas, you can spend up to 14 days and nights in one location before you have to move. Keep in mind that most state and national parks are much busier and require a permit for dispersed camping if they allow it at all.
Dispersed campsites have no standard check-in and check-out time, but they are usually much busier during the weekends. Sites in busy areas will usually fill up by Friday afternoon and stay busy through Sunday. However, it is pretty easy to find a weekend site for dispersed camping in Colorado. Go early if you want to be sure to snag a spot, and have a backup plan in case your preferred area is full.
Grand County Campground Information
Create unforgettable family memories waking up to mountain-crisp air, babbling brooks, verdant meadows, and towering mountains just outside your tent door. Grand County offers a variety of camping accommodations including public campgrounds in Rocky Mountain National Park, Arapaho National Recreation Area, Byers Peak, Idlewild, Robbers Roost, and St. Louis Creek.
For complete information on camping in each of the four main areas of Grand County, as well as the many public lands and wilderness areas, please contact each chamber directly.
Here are some of the more well-known spots to pitch a tent or hook up an RV around Grand County:
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Campgrounds Near Grand Junction Co
If you want to make the most of your summer by camping in the Grand Junction, CO area, there are several scenic and noteworthy campgrounds that are relatively close to home. So, grab your family and friends, pack up your RV, fifth-wheel, camper or tent and head to any of the gorgeous campgrounds in the Grand Junction area. If you need a few ideas for campgrounds to visit, take a closer look at any of the eight campgrounds listed below.
Why Youll Love Valley Sunset Rv Ranch
Valley Sunset RV Ranch is a great budget option for RVers and offers some of the highest values for its rates. It is a quiet, shady park and has pull-through campsites. For a centrally located home base near all of the national monuments and state parks in the area, you cant go wrong with Valley Sunset RV Ranch.
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Dispersed Camping In Colorado: Now Your Know
There is no better way to explore and enjoy the rocky mountains than through dispersed camping in the backcountry. With no fees or reservations, and no loud neighbors, it has all of the best of the outdoors with none of the irritation.
However, this isolation means you must be self-reliant and provide more of your own gear and water. It also requires a bit of willingness to explore and go searching for the unknown the reward is well worth the effort. I hope my guide helped you learn more about dispersed camping in Colorado. Enjoy your next trip and safe travels on the trail!
Places To Camp For Free In Colorado
Camping Below the Stars Scenic view along the Colorado River with tent illuminated from within with Milky Way.
Colorado has some amazing campgrounds, with scenic beauty and accommodations like drinking water, restrooms, and picnic tables all for a nightly fee that is a fraction of what a hotel would cost. But sometimes, dont you just want to find a secluded spot along a dusty road and enjoy some privacy? Or maybe you just forgot your checkbook. With that in mind, here are 7 places to camp for free in Colorado. Please keep in mind that no fee means no cleaning or trash pickup, so for the sake of the forests, follow Leave No Trace principles by using existing campsites and campfire rings and packing out all your trash.
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Chaffee County Road 390
This dirt road between Buena Vista and Twin Lakes offers stunning scenery deep in the mighty Sawatch Range, with several ghost towns and four 14,000-foot peaks to climb. Free, heavily used campsites can be found along the road. Passenger cars can make the drive for up to 12 miles along the road. Theres a large meadow near the Winfield ghost town if other sites are full, or if you have a high-clearance vehicle, you can continue on for more remote camping. This area is part of San Isabel National Forest, one of the best areas to camp for free in Colorado.
While youre there: Tackle some 14ers. Go for Mounts Columbia and Oxford , Missouri Mountain, or Huron Peak.
+ Best Places For Free Dispersed Camping In Colorado
Today, Im going to share my all-time favorite free campsites in Colorado.
The Centennial State is home to literally thousands of dispersed campsites , so let me be clear that my recommendations below are simply to help you start your search.
Here are my 11 favorite free dispersed campsites in Colorado.
Please always follow the 7 Leave No Trace principles when dispersed camping in Colorado.
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Base Camp At Golden Gate Canyon
A full service, modern campground with everything necessary for the RV enthusiast or tent camper. This campground has a little bit of something for every member of the family and is a perfect launching point for adventures in nearby Golden Gate Canyon State Park.
- Closest town: Black Hawk
- Specs: 29 RV sites, 4 group tent sites, 14 tent sites, 10 cabins, full electric hookup, water, restrooms open year-round
- Amenities: Convenience store, laundry, showers, propane, liquor store, playground, WiFi
- Recreation: Nearby fishing, hiking, boating, horseback riding, biking, wildlife viewing
Located in a mountainside aspen and lodgepole pine forest, this basic campground is lightly used and a perfect getaway for anyone looking for a quiet place to camp. Wildlife and scenic views abound in this scenic area.
- Closest town: Black Hawk
- Specs: 36 campsites, 31 available for RVs, 5 tent-only, water, vault toilet, open June 10 to September 20
- Amenities: Firewood for sale at the campground
- Recreation: Hiking, fishing, wildlife viewing
- Reservations: recreation.gov, first-come, first-serve after the summer season is over
- Address: 12174 Colorado Highway 119, Black Hawk, CO 80422
- Directions: From Black Hawk go northwest on Bobtail Road .4 miles. Turn right Gregory Street, go .2 miles. Turn left on Colorado Highway 119, go 5.1 miles, turn left, the campground will be on the left.
What People Are Saying About Junction West Rv Park
My husband and I have stayed here twice, and its a great RV park. Prices are reasoble, and the people are friendly and helpful. They guided us to our site each time with a golf cart and assisted us in parking. Grand Junction is hot in the summer and early fall, but that was to be expected. The grass is green, the showers/restrooms are clean and well maintained, and the laundry facility is very nice. They have a small store, where you can purchase some items, and there is a convenience store/truck stop not too far away for any necessary items. It is close to shopping, if you find that necessary, with a mall and box stores not far away. We will most likely stay there again. We stayed in our motorhome. Anne, Google Review
Grand Junction KOA is located just off Highway 50 in Grand Junction. This is another campground that offers accommodations for rigs of all sizes and is easily maneuverable. The location makes it the perfect home base for RV camping in Grand Junction, Colorado.
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Motor Vehicle Use Maps
These are large PDFs made available from the Forest Service.
Many, but not all, of these maps show where dispersed camping is permitted. Roads with dots on either side represent free campsites. Each map has a legend.
Its best to download them for an easier time viewing, and so you have them with you if bring a computer on the road. I havent tried viewing them on a cell phone, but they are very large and it would be a headache.
To Print Open the map and find the area you need to print. Go to File, Print, and under Pages to Print, select More Options and Current view. Next under Page Sizing & Handling choose Fit. Select Orientation and then Print.
Tip Bring up the location in Google Maps too, so you can get more street names and info.
MVUM National Forests