Campground suggestions near Estes Park in Colorado

Discussion in 'Colorado' started by bobandberna, Feb 26, 2017.

  1. bobandberna

    bobandberna New Member

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    This is my first post. Needing suggestions for campgrounds. Will be traveling with our two adult children-1 beginning college one ending(whoohoo!). Can be without hookups but prefer showers in area. Looking at Moraine Park-is that the best for being close to nature? Thanks in advance! Been a long time observer on this site:)
     
  2. kcsa75

    kcsa75 Well-Known Member

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    There are several options in the area. Morraine Park and Aspenglen in RMNP are close to Estes Park. The rest are essentially private campgrounds -- a place to park your Pup, but not much atmosphere. We stayed at Mary's Lake last summer, which, I believe is owned by the city/county. It was OK for a couple nights, but the main reason we stayed there was availability on short notice.

    But if you're in Estes Park, don't miss Antonio's Real New York Pizza and Deli. There are five or six tables, but you're best is to carry out. Everything is made from scratch and the food is incredibly good.
    https://www.yelp.com/biz/antonios-real-new-york-pizza-and-deli-estes-park
     
  3. NJGuy

    NJGuy Active Member

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    We drove around several of the RMNP CGs. Those closest to Estes Park entrance were filled to capacity and very active. Timber Creek on the western side was not full and more quiet. However, situated in an open meadow.
     
  4. bobandberna

    bobandberna New Member

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    Thank you! Our first trip to Rocky Mountain National Park. DD graduating wanted Estes Park. Will definitely try out the pizza! Trying to avoid areas with generators allowed.
     
  5. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    When are you planning on making the trip? You may already be late to find that perfect spot. Also, when Trail Ridge Road opens is dependent on the snowfall. Once it's open, getting from east to west sections of the park is easier - not to mention lots of scenery.

    I think we stayed in Glacier Basin at 3 or 4 years ago. The other main one was closed, as they were cutting trees killed by borers. IIRC, it would be open now. (As with a lot of the west, pine borers have done a job on trees in RMNP. They can only afford to treat a portion of them in the front country. Several of the campgrounds we've used in Colorado over the past 25 years have had to be pretty much clear cut for safety.)
    We have thought we might try Aspenglen CG the next time we head that way. We managed to find a vacancy in the "Kabin" at the KOA in Estes Park in June the summer of our last visit. (one brother from the east decided to come visit his son, working in Estes Park that year, on short notice.) That campground is similar to many private ones. It is a big crowded together, even by KOA standards, though in this case, it's understandable. (It's one of the first in the KOA system, built when trailers and RVs weren't huge, there weren't as many camping in them, and there is limited flat ground to expand on. I got lots of exercise going up and down the hill to the restroom, etc.)
    What is your definition of being close to nature? As with many of the NP campgrounds, some sites are better than others for being close to nature. We enjoy being close to the park trails and sightseeing, so like to stay in the parks when possible.
     
  6. fastdixie

    fastdixie Member

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    Colorado State park system is awesome. They are well maintained, campsites are separated so you're not on top of your neighbors, and many have showers. We pop our pup near Co Springs, but all of them are good choices, and easily reservable. Golden Gate SP may be the closest to Estes Park, and would be a good substitute if you don't mind a bit of a drive to Estes.
     
  7. bobandberna

    bobandberna New Member

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    We are going end of June. I've seen the campgrounds booking up so trying to make a decision quick. We have a 2004 Coleman Niagara with cassette toilet and shower so restroom facilities are not a deal breaker for us. Thank you for all of your suggestions.
     
  8. kreeves

    kreeves She and her two dogs

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    Estes Park is/was a beautiful area. The forest fire went through there a year or so ago, so unsure about the campgrounds. Check with the Colorado state park info. They should steer you to some sites. Happy Camping..
     
  9. bobandberna

    bobandberna New Member

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    There is one spot left in Aspenglen campground but it is handicap accessible which means we may be asked to move to any non accessible spot in that campground if someone needs our spot. It seems to be a smaller campground so more spread out- is this campground less populated than Moraine Campground? We don't mind packing up if someone needs our spot. Just not sure which campground to pick!
     
  10. sleach

    sleach A short run will get you within walking distance.

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    There are three categories of campgrounds in the Estes Park area, commercial, Rocky Mtn Natl Park, and USFS. Commercial facilities range from very nice to near shabby. RMNP and USFS campgrounds are all the basic vault toilet and central water point type.

    I strongly recommend getting reservations. This is a very popular area, with a combination of astounding scenery, wildlife viewing and all the classic tourist trap amenities like art galleries, taffy shops, etc.

    Google "Estes Park Campgrounds" to review locations, features and costs for the commercial places. These are all located in or very close to Estes Park, and have features like shower houses and swimming pools.

    RMNP campgrounds in my order of preference. Only those taking reservations are listed. Go to RMNP website.
    Moraine Park
    Aspenglen
    Glacier Basin

    USFS campgrounds south of Estes, closest first, that take reservations at Recreation.gov.
    Olive Ridge
    Peaceful Valley
    Camp Dick

    Enjoy your trip. Be sure to get out of your car and do some hiking.
     
  11. fame79

    fame79 "The mountains are calling and I must go" -J. Muir

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    Moraine Park has an excellent solar shower facility (bring your own solar shower). Don't overlook all the great places in the National Forests (book online at recreation.gov). One of our favorites is Ansel Watrous campground. It is right on the Poudre River in the Roosevelt NF.
     
    kcsa75 likes this.

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