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Old 07-20-2022, 11:15 AM   #1
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Colorado Trip

Thinking about doing a Colorado trip next summer. I looked at the rocky mountain national park and it all seems to be tents.

Any good camp grounds in the trees/popular area's ?
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Old 07-20-2022, 11:31 AM   #2
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Was there several years ago, before Covid. Was busy but dooable.
But now, if your planning on a visit next year, start making your reservations now. And, depending on time of year, you'll need to make a reservation just to get into the park longer on a "just drive in" basis. I believe they have morning and afternoon reservations.
Have several friends who were there last month, and the roads around Estes are nothing more than parking lots. Traffic lines into the park can be several miles long.
Start planning now.
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Old 07-20-2022, 12:00 PM   #3
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We have spent every September in Estes Park for the past 10 years or so. Crowds are down and the aspens start turning before we leave in early October. We use Manor RV Park which is not great but they have monthly rates. Basically it is just a place to park and sleep.

Rocky Mountain National Park is our favorite national park. We love to hike some of its trails and some of the scenery is magnificent but it can be crowded. Since we are there for a month we don't go to the park on weekends. You have to buy your daily passes on The passes open up on the first of the month for the following month as in August 1 I will be getting my passes for September, September 1 for October. I try to be online when it opens as the numbers are limited. Last year you could get Trail Ridge Road and/or Bear Lake Road passes. Bear Lake is more popular but also has some neat hiking trails. Trail Ridge will take you through the park up to the Alpine visitors center and down to Grand Lake, a kind of neat town with a pretty lake to visit. Bear Lake Road is an in and out up to Bear Lake, obviously. September is the elk rut and lots of traffic in the afternoon as the crowds gather to watch the herds especially at Moraine Park. There are usually enough elk wandering thru the town to keep you busy. The picture of the guy with the big antlers was taken out the window of our fifth wheel 2 years ago.

There are several campgrounds within the park but I'm not sure I've ever seen one with a vacancy sign. The one on the west side was closed last year due to the fire but not sure about this year. There are trailers in the campgrounds but I have no idea of the length limit. I think water is available but that is about it. In Estes there is Elk Meadows and Spruce Lake, which we do not like because of poor treatment of their customers, Manor, a KOA, Mary's Lake which is operated by the city plus a few others. There is also a Jellystone Park down the mountain from Estes toward Lyons on US 36.
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Old 07-20-2022, 04:42 PM   #4
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If you do search for camping east of Estes Park, please be aware that Hwy 34 and the Drake area have had forest fires, and the burn scar has already caused some heavy flooding and camping is a very bad idea in a burn scar area.

Every site requires a reservation in Colorado.

Dispersed camping is available in every National Park, check the requirements when towing in a rig. Class B motorhomes are ok in dispersed camping.
No reservations required for dispersed.

Don't Know your rig's power and weight, but Garland to Estes Park will be eye-opening if you have not done it before.
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Old 07-20-2022, 05:11 PM   #5
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Eye-opening and cheek puckering describes about all the drives in that area.
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Old 07-20-2022, 05:38 PM   #6
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This is my home country. There are multiple rv parks in Estes just outside the park. You will need to make a timed reservation to enter RMNP. If you’re adventurous you can go through the park on Trail Ridge Road and come out on the west side @ Grand Lake.
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Old 07-20-2022, 05:49 PM   #7
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RMNP itself has RV sites. There are plenty in Moraine Park campground. Others have a few. The website is not well designed and unless you dig into each campground it seems like all the sites are for tents.. Not the case. Dig in.

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