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Top 10 Places to Go Camping in Colorado

Lake Shagwa - Red Feather Lakes Colorado
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Last updated :  | By JWalmsley

Top 10 Places to Go Camping in Colorado

Colorado is known for its stunning geographical diversity and is abundant with gorgeous rivers, snow capped mountains and arid deserts. The possibilities for camping and outdoor explorations are endless which can make the planning process overwhelming.

If Colorado is on your list for camping this season, here are top ten locations that you cannot afford to miss.

1. Red Feather Lakes

When you head to the Rocky Mountains for adventure and reach the northwest of Fort Collins, you will fall in love with the jaw dropping views. This Red Feather Lakes is also Colorado’s first designed scenic river. Nearby Dowdy lake has a number of popular sites for fishing, biking and hiking as well.

Lake Shagwa - Red Feather Lakes Colorado

This area was first identified by ranchers around 1900 and today, it has become a popular outdoor playground with beautiful scenery, mountain views and hiking trails.

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1. Red Feather Lakes

Lake Shagwa - Red Feather Lakes Colorado

When you head to the Rocky Mountains for adventure and reach the northwest of Fort Collins, you will fall in love with the jaw dropping views. This Red Feather Lakes is also Colorado’s first designed scenic river. Nearby Dowdy lake has a number of popular sites for fishing, biking and hiking as well.
This area was first identified by ranchers around 1900 and today, it has become a popular outdoor playground with beautiful scenery, mountain views and hiking trails.

Plan your trip

2. Golden Gate Canyon State Park

Colorado Golden Gate Canyon State Park

Surrounded by more than 12,000 acres of dense forest and miles of trail, the Golden Gate Canyon State is a camper’s paradise. The stunning location is only 30 miles from Denver and there are two different campgrounds. All visitors get to choose from 156 camping sites and there are exciting spots for mountain biking, horseback riding and winter sport.

Tent camping at Golden Gate Canyon Park is available all year round, but you need to remember that they are available on first come, first serve basis. You also have the chance to enjoy hunting expedition on the Ralston Creek which is right adjacent to the park.

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2. Golden Gate Canyon State Park

Colorado Golden Gate Canyon State Park

Surrounded by more than 12,000 acres of dense forest and miles of trail, the Golden Gate Canyon State is a camper’s paradise. The stunning location is only 30 miles from Denver and there are two different campgrounds. All visitors get to choose from 156 camping sites and there are exciting spots for mountain biking, horseback riding and winter sport.
Tent camping at Golden Gate Canyon Park is available all year round, but you need to remember that they are available on first come, first serve basis. You also have the chance to enjoy hunting expedition on the Ralston Creek which is right adjacent to the park.

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3. Camp Dick

Camp Dick was established during the mid 1930s and is located on the Middle Saint Vrain Creek. The camping ground is surrounded by conifer forests as well as an open meadow. The trails in the region are open for hiking and biking. Guided horseback riding is just a mile away.

camp dick colorado

All campsites in Camp Dick accommodate tents and you would find picnic tables and campfire rings. If needed, you can purchase firewood at the campsite even during the peak season.

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3. Camp Dick

camp dick colorado

Camp Dick was established during the mid 1930s and is located on the Middle Saint Vrain Creek. The camping ground is surrounded by conifer forests as well as an open meadow. The trails in the region are open for hiking and biking. Guided horseback riding is just a mile away.

All campsites in Camp Dick accommodate tents and you would find picnic tables and campfire rings. If needed, you can purchase firewood at the campsite even during the peak season.

Plan your trip

4. Turquoise Lake

Hanging Lake near Glenwood Springs Colorado

Turquoise Lake is a recreation area just outside of Leadville, Colorado. This area is known for boating and fishing. Other popular recreation activities include camping and hiking. There are about 300 campsites in the area spread across eight campgrounds.

You have the option to choose from tent camping and RV camping and majority of the campgrounds are located on the eastern shore. What campers love about the campgrounds is that they offer picnic tables, fire rings, drinking water and toilets!
Because Turquoise lakes are located at an elevation of almost 10,000 feet, the camping sites are only open during the summer season. If you are not used to altitude climbing, drink plenty of water and allow extra time for activities. You can however still visit the location as it is one of the popular destinations for ice fishing. To make your outdoor adventures more fun, do make reservations in advance as campgrounds are available on first come, first served basis.

Plan your trip

4. Turquoise Lake

Hanging Lake near Glenwood Springs Colorado

Turquoise Lake is a recreation area just outside of Leadville, Colorado. This area is known for boating and fishing. Other popular recreation activities include camping and hiking. There are about 300 campsites in the area spread across eight campgrounds.
You have the option to choose from tent camping and RV camping and majority of the campgrounds are located on the eastern shore. What campers love about the campgrounds is that they offer picnic tables, fire rings, drinking water and toilets!
Because Turquoise lakes are located at an elevation of almost 10,000 feet, the camping sites are only open during the summer season. If you are not used to altitude climbing, drink plenty of water and allow extra time for activities. You can however still visit the location as it is one of the popular destinations for ice fishing. To make your outdoor adventures more fun, do make reservations in advance as campgrounds are available on first come, first served basis.

Plan your trip

5. Saddlehorn Campground

The site is the only established campground within the monument. All campsites in ‘A’ loop are first come, first served. You can reserve camping sites in B loop up to six months in advance. C loop camping sites are ideal for individual as well as group camping.

saddlehorn-campground

Saddlehorn is the only established campsite in the monument and it’s not surprising that all 80 camping sites fill really quickly in summer. This mesmerizing location can be found at the end of the 23 mile long scenic drive through the canyons. As you drive to the camping site, you can enjoy expansive views of the Grand Junction and the valley.
Most visitors are impressed with the six mile long hike along the monument canyon trail. More adventurous visitors can enjoy desert hiking. If you decide to stay at the campsite, you can enjoy road bike ride as well as rock climbing.

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5. Saddlehorn Campground

saddlehorn-campground

The site is the only established campground within the monument. All campsites in ‘A’ loop are first come, first served. You can reserve camping sites in B loop up to six months in advance. C loop camping sites are ideal for individual as well as group camping.
Saddlehorn is the only established campsite in the monument and it’s not surprising that all 80 camping sites fill really quickly in summer. This mesmerizing location can be found at the end of the 23 mile long scenic drive through the canyons. As you drive to the camping site, you can enjoy expansive views of the Grand Junction and the valley.
Most visitors are impressed with the six mile long hike along the monument canyon trail. More adventurous visitors can enjoy desert hiking. If you decide to stay at the campsite, you can enjoy road bike ride as well as rock climbing.

Plan your trip

6. Little Molas Lake Campground

Little Molas Lake Colorado

People do not hesitate to Little Molas for outdoor adventure. The destination is known for its close proximity to Andrews Lake and is located at over 3,300m Little Molas also has excellent hiking access to the Colorado trail.

While summers in Little Molas Campground are glorious (the high altitude destination is stocked with rainbows), you should be prepared with a solid tent and lots of weatherproof gear to make your outdoor adventure more fun.

Plan your trip

6. Little Molas Lake Campground

Little Molas Lake Colorado

People do not hesitate to Little Molas for outdoor adventure. The destination is known for its close proximity to Andrews Lake and is located at over 3,300m Little Molas also has excellent hiking access to the Colorado trail.
While summers in Little Molas Campground are glorious (the high altitude destination is stocked with rainbows), you should be prepared with a solid tent and lots of weatherproof gear to make your outdoor adventure more fun.

Plan your trip

7. Angel of Shavano

Angel of Shavano campgrounds without a doubt are one of the region’s best kept secrets. While the camping ground is small and features only 20 campsites, the cozy atmosphere allows you to spend quality time with family and friends.

Esprit-Point-and_Mount_Shavano

The variety of recreational activities offered at the Angel of Shavano campground includes fishing, biking and hiking. This campground interestingly is named after an angel that appears on Shavano Mountains. It lies at an elevation of 9,200 feet and is covered by aspen and pine forests.
Some camping sites along the river are encircled by open, grassy meadows. Because Angel of Shavano is situated at an elevation, you need to take along protective camping gear. Thunderstorms are quite common among the summer months.
The Colorado Trail begins within the Angel of Shavano campground and provides excellent hiking and biking opportunities for adventurous campers. This trail is about 487 miles and the segments range in elevation from 5,500 feet to over 13,000 feet.

Plan your trip

7. Angel of Shavano

Esprit-Point-and_Mount_Shavano

Angel of Shavano campgrounds without a doubt are one of the region’s best kept secrets. While the camping ground is small and features only 20 campsites, the cozy atmosphere allows you to spend quality time with family and friends.
The variety of recreational activities offered at the Angel of Shavano campground includes fishing, biking and hiking. This campground interestingly is named after an angel that appears on Shavano Mountains. It lies at an elevation of 9,200 feet and is covered by aspen and pine forests.
Some camping sites along the river are encircled by open, grassy meadows. Because Angel of Shavano is situated at an elevation, you need to take along protective camping gear. Thunderstorms are quite common among the summer months.
The Colorado Trail begins within the Angel of Shavano campground and provides excellent hiking and biking opportunities for adventurous campers. This trail is about 487 miles and the segments range in elevation from 5,500 feet to over 13,000 feet.

Plan your trip

8. Piñon Flats Campground

Piñon Flats

Piñon Flats campground is located in the Great Sand Dunes National Park. It features high mountain peaks, grasslands, lush forests, sparkling streams and a wide variety of wildflowers.

There are endless outdoor recreational activities and the camping site is perfect for kids who want to explore nature.

Plan your trip

8. Piñon Flats Campground

Piñon Flats

Piñon Flats campground is located in the Great Sand Dunes National Park. It features high mountain peaks, grasslands, lush forests, sparkling streams and a wide variety of wildflowers. There are endless outdoor recreational activities and the camping site is perfect for kids who want to explore nature.

Plan your trip

9. Oh Be Joyful Campground

Located in the heart of the Gunnison National Forest, the campground is a popular place for outdoor enthusiasts. There are over 15 campsites and adventurers can enjoy an abundance of hiking, biking, skiing, paddling, and wildlife watching.

Oh Be Joyful campground

The camping ground is open all year round and is particularly stunning especially in fall.

Plan your trip

9. Oh Be Joyful Campground

Oh Be Joyful campground

Located in the heart of the Gunnison National Forest, the campground is a popular place for outdoor enthusiasts. There are over 15 campsites and adventurers can enjoy an abundance of hiking, biking, skiing, paddling, and wildlife watching. The camping ground is open all year round and is particularly stunning especially in fall.

Plan your trip

10. Buena Vista

buena-vista-colorado

This beautiful valley is ideal for fishing, rafting and kayaking. The Arrowhead Point campground has camping sites, cottages and cabins within the perfect mountain settings so you can get back to nature with a fun twist.

Plan your trip

10. Buena Vista

buena-vista-colorado

This beautiful valley is ideal for fishing, rafting and kayaking. The Arrowhead Point campground has camping sites, cottages and cabins within the perfect mountain settings so you can get back to nature with a fun twist.

Plan your trip

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