The best camping near Arapaho National Forest

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Arapaho adventure.

The best camping near Arapaho National Forest

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Arapaho adventure.

Camping near Arapaho National Forest

94% (36 reviews)

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Arapaho adventure.

1.5 million acres of woodlands, wilderness areas, and backcountry camping.  

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Community favorites near Arapaho National Forest

Top-rated campgrounds reviewed by the Hipcamp community.

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Stay at a public campground in Arapaho National Forest

Top-rated campgrounds near Arapaho National Forest

98%
(752)

Clear Creek Getaway

13 sites · Lodging20 acres · CO
Welcome to Clear Creek Getaway! NOTE: Absolutely no smoking in the A-frames Bedding: we do not provide beds or bedding Please understand that these types of amenities cost way more providing blankets and sheets pillow’s that I need to launder every day So be prepared to bring your own sleeping pads or air mattress I can provide all for a additional cost of 40.00 for the cleaning crew For the glam dome: file:///var/mobile/Library/SMS/Attachments/cd/13/3781DC46-F036-428E-BFC5-447B16E14D54/Image-1.jpeg Roads : This is a mountain getaway so the roads are dirt. If you have Awd and keep your speed up you will make it fine. The road is a loop the backside can have rocks so please drive up in high clearance vehicles no need for crazy lifted just SUV-Trucks type We are available all year round. No power in units. All A-Frames come with a grill and propane (see photos), and there is also a solar motion light on the deck. All A-frames have heat for the winter months (propane heaters). Located 10 minutes by car from historic gold town Idaho Springs. River rafting when in season. We also have some of Colorado’s best fly fishing. Awesome hikes nearby (Gray's Peak). We are also close to st Mary’s Glacier, gold mine tours, great small-town restaurants (Marion’s pizza, Beau Joe’s) Hot springs within miles. We have portable toilets located close to the units Great views and there is an old mining cabin at the top if you find it please post your pictures! Georgetown lake 5 miles west I 70 Paddle boarding , train ride through the hills Grays Peak Fourteener 7 miles west I 70 St. Mary’s glacier 2 miles east I70 Hot Springs 2 miles east I70 All mining roads can be used for off-road purposes at your own risk. Be careful, very steep and rocky. ( Please note ) after tremendous amounts of work on the road, it seems 2wd cars cannot make it and this place is not suitable for those campers. Please do not block the road going up or the residence in the mobile home park on the front of the road. When coming from east exit 234 Dumont go left over I 70 to Stanley and then left behind the mobile home. Come from the west 235 go left under I70 at Starbucks turn right go 1/2 mile first right go back over I 70 to Stanley and harvest moon trail go left up behind mobile homes NOTE THIS IS LOOP DONT TAKE STEEP ROAD (GO TO THE LEFT).
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$50
 / night
95%
(116)

Sherwood Creek Camp and Glamp

5 sites · Lodging, Tents24 acres · Nederland, CO
This forested and open meadow property is located on a seasonal creek 2 miles from the quaint mountain town of Nederland, Colorado. A short drive to both Boulder & Denver and situated in the picturesque Front Range, Nederland has convenient access to skiing, mountain biking, hiking & camping, including many points of access to the Continental Divide. The property is within walking distance of Boulder County Open Space and Indian Peaks Wilderness trails for endless biking and hiking adventures. Sites are private and secluded. There is a 20-foot tipi, a quaint treehouse, and a tent site camp that can be rented separately or together for larger groups. Toilet, picnic table, and potable water all available onsite. We have endless hiking, biking, and mountain fun activities onsite and nearby! Space for camper vans as well! We look forward to hosting you soon.
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$58
 / night
92%
(100)

Arapaho Valley Ranch

68 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents100 acres · Granby, CO
Arapaho Valley Ranch is a gorgeous, family-owned guest ranch in Colorado’s beautiful Grand County. Our ranch is surrounded by the Arapaho National Forest and is nestled in one of the most beautiful wilderness areas in the Indian Peaks Wilderness. This area features hiking trails, waterfalls, and historic steam engines from the old town of Monarch. We have a private hiking trail that leads to our “kissing swing” overlooking the headwaters of the Colorado River Valley.
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$65
 / night
92%
(98)

Prospector’s Rush

7 sites · RVs, Tents5 acres · Central City, CO
Welcome to Prospector’s Rush campground located on a 5-acre old mining claim near Idaho Springs, Colorado. This unique rustic campground offers visitors a chance to reconnect with nature while experiencing the rich history of the area. 4WD is necessary to access our property!!! As you arrive, you'll be greeted by the untouched beauty of the Rocky Mountains and the sound of a nearby stream. The campground is surrounded by towering pine trees and a variety of wildlife (moose, deer, elk, turkeys and black bear), providing a peaceful and serene atmosphere. Prospector’s Rush campground offers tent sites and RV sites, each with plenty of space for campers to spread out and enjoy the natural surroundings. While we do not have running water on site, we do have a pit toilet. This is a true camping experience, allowing you to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of daily life and immerse yourself in the simplicity of nature. As you explore the area, you'll discover remnants of the old mining operation, including abandoned mineshafts. You can also hike the nearby trails, or simply relax and enjoy the beauty of the starry night sky. At Prospector’s Rush campground, we pride ourselves on offering a true wilderness experience, with limited amenities to ensure that you can fully appreciate the natural beauty of the area. Come visit Prospector’s Rush campground and discover a piece of Colorado's rich history while immersing yourself in the peace and tranquility of pure nature. 4WD is mandatory!!
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$49
 / night
100%
(105)

Williams Fork Lodging

5 sites · Lodging80 acres · Parshall, CO
Luxury spa amenities away from the crowds and immersed in wilderness. Close enough to visit Rocky Mountain national Park Hot Springs in winter park ski area perfect for the couple and their dog. Hot tub, sauna, ropes, slippers and herbal teas. Hike, bike or snowshoe our 80 acres of trails abundant with wildflowers hummingbirds and wildlife beautiful fall colors to dark sky nights great for stargazing, fresh farm eggs and cinnamon rolls are available to pre-order. We are located at the end of a private road, we value or peace and serenity here and hope you do as well Adjacent to state national public lands, just for miles to the Williams fork reservoir a few more miles will take it to the Colorado river and many other lakes and reservoirs to fish in recreate Ask Dale for references a fun things to do in the area, such as rafting, horseback, riding or zip lining All wheel drive, or 4 x 4 with high clearance is recommended for the best experience We are approximately a half hour to kremmling Hot Sulphur Springs and the closest restaurant We are a little over an hour to Granby in Rocky Mountain national Park. Two hours to any summit county, ski areas, and steamboat. The lodge is basically a triplex building with a common area and three condos within. Bill’s cabin is our fourth lodging option that sits out on our Ridge about a half mile from the lodge building. Bill‘s cabin is off grid and has an out house. It also requires all wheel drive. The common area, houses the sauna, games, washer and dryer, and it’s just basically extra room to spread out. It also includes Wi-Fi and a refrigerator, for bills cabin guests to use. The lodge can be rented as one unit to sleep up to 10 guests. Or The lodge can also be rented as individual units: Each unit is individually named, has private entrances, and is completely private. There is the Copper Peak, which is a studio. The Williams Peak. and The Byers Peak. The shared areas include the hot tub and sauna which are located in common area. Each unit is filled with luxury and everyday amenities you need for a complete stay. We allow dogs too! Williams Peak and Copper Peak unit has a doggie door leading to a six-foot tall kennel run! NOTE: dogs cannot be left alone when you leave. Bills Cabin is our separate off grid, rental cabin, which offers luxury camping in a forested environment with numerous foot and bike trails right out your door! The total darkness provides a spectacular night time sky full of stars and constellations perfect for viewing from the deck. Expect to see wild life in our exclusive off grid cabin, while you enjoy an Ecco friendly vacation! Bill’s cabin has a primitive road to it and therefore some foresight is required for travel, a 4x4 vehicle is required in any seasonal weather. We recommend a conversation about your means of travel. Alternative methods such as Bike or hike, we just highly recommend that no one hikes at night. Bills cabin is built out of concrete including the "log" siding. The power comes from solar panels and propane to cook and heat. Your kitchen and bathroom include instant hot water and are just outside the door..enjoy an alfresco shower out side! Alternatively the lodge office guest bathroom/shower is also provided for Bill’s Cabin Guests. This unique lodging experience is an opportunity to enjoy a camping vacation with a loved one or a friend without all the cost and hassle of setting up camp. Enjoy a deck complete with a gas grill and fire place. Water is provided for washing dishes, hands and drinking. You need to bring food, ice cubes. Bill’s cabin is available for the summer and fall beginning Memorial Day weekend or earlier as weather permits. All lodging includes bed linens as well as towels, dishes, coffee pot, coffee, grill, within the lodge, all rooms have full kitchens, including microwaves Bills cabin provides a cooler including ice blocks, everything you need to cook with, including a grill burners, and a camp oven! We provide split wood and propane for all guests. bathrooms are supplied with shampoo, lotion, hair dryers and other small necessities! The common area as well as the buyers peak offer a Washer/dryer for guests to use Wifi, smart TV with Netflix, Hulu and pandora various crafts, games, puzzles and corn hole. A large deck for yoga, gathering with other guests or just relaxing over looks the valley and is perfect for wildlife viewing is also located at the lodge. Sorry but our zoning does not allow for any camping of any sort on our property. Come experience the Old West as it was and still is as you meander along the road through working ranches that were homesteaded back in the early 1900’s...their weathered log cabins still standing and often still occupied...others are close enough for a great “back in time” photo opportunity. As Colorado's open range law permits ranchers to graze their cattle without borders, you will often find them on the roadways or you may even get caught up in a cattle drive as the ranchers move their cattle from one pasture or paddock to another. Springtime brings all the calves and branding time! Observing the rancher, his horse, and dog working together is a genuine treat. Look along the roadside for sage grouse, in the open fields for pronghorn, down in the willows and streams for the bull moose, in the trees for the mule deer, and on top of the ridge lines for the elk. There are also bald eagle and osprey nests, alpacas, horses, sheep, and goats. All this just on the ride into Williams Fork Lodging! Our residence sits above this scenic panorama at the end of the road and adjacent to public lands tucked beneath Copper Peak on the Williams Fork Range. The elevation is roughly 8,500 feet and the 180 degree view is breathtaking...encompassing three mountain ranges, many peaks, pastures/meadows, forest, and ponds. Soak in everything from the glorious sunrises to enchanting full moons to brilliant stars that truly seem closer than they are…the view of the Milky Way is unobstructed by light pollution for outstanding celestial shows…and meteor showers are spectacular from the hot tub! We live on the same property as the Lodge and are quite self sustainable: hunting, fishing, gardening, gathering wild berries, and raising our own poultry meat. The Lodge and cabin are constructed of concrete and rock as well as high efficiency windows and takes full advantage of passive solar heat; backup heat and the hot water are provided by wood via an outside boiler maintained by us. if interested, Dale offers fresh baked caramel rolls and other enticing breads and/or meals. Every season has its own special beauty: Spring brings abundant wild flowers, contrasting greens of pine, aspen and sage. Newborn livestock and wildlife. Thunderstorms and brilliant double rainbows. Birds singing, chickens crowing and warm, quiet evenings are welcomed in summer. Our view of the fall colors are hard to match ~ the changing yellow, gold and reds quaking in the valley are quite beautiful. Winter brings diamond-sparkling white snow untouched by humans and cobalt blue skies and picture-perfect post card and right out your
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$115
 / night
98%
(763)

Glen Isle Resort

20 sites · RVs, Tents101 acres · Bailey, CO
(If you book with us, please don’t follow your GPS if it tries to make you turn at the Coney Island hot dog stand. Glen Isle is .5 miles past the hot dog stand.) Due to the ongoing issues with forest fires in our area and insurance issues at this time, we will no longer have open wood-burning fires. Propane fires are permitted if you have a portable campfire ring, please feel free to bring your own. We do have a couple available for rent onsite. For your safety and ours: absolutely no check in/arrival after dark sets in; Around 5:15pm during winter months. 7:30pm summer There are many reasons why you would want to camp at Glen Isle Resort! Glen Isle is located in Bailey, Colorado which is the perfect vacation spot for friends, family, reunions, or a private get away. Glen Isle was originally built for an escape from hectic Denver. Once you cross the bridge into the resort, you’ll understand why it has served as a peaceful getaway for over a century. The Platte River welcomes you and divides the property from Highway 285. If you love to fish, you have a mile of the river to use at your disposal. If hiking is your forte and you desire to explore nature, Glen Isle is surrounded by the National Forest, Lost Creek Wilderness, Payne Gulch Trailhead, the Colorado Trail and many private acres for you to explore. You will find history narrates the Native American’s story where Glen Isle was once used as an Indian encampment, and numerous trees still stand today that were culturally modified to mark sacred treasures. If you seek tranquility, you will find hummingbirds and chipmunks always seeking an audience to entertain. Starting June 1st, we will offer evening activities, and campers are welcome to come to the lodge, shop in our gift shop. We also have snacks for purchase, and popcorn for our guests to enjoy. (Glorious Glen Isle was unoccupied for six years. We are in the process of renovating hundred year old cabins, and the 8,000 square foot lodge. Our camping areas have a river setting, glorious valley views, and a private setting surrounded by the National Forest. However, there is renovation and construction going on around some areas of the property. Additionally, as you can see from the map and read in a few reviews, we are just on the other side of the beautiful Platte River from Highway 285. About 75% of our guests are not bothered by the busyness of the this highway but others can be more sensitive to the noise. We want Glen-Isle campers to enjoy their experience as much as possible, so if you would like more information, please do not hesitate to ask. Our goal is to share the property with others, and to have the "happiest" campers in Colorado!) Glen Isle Resort was opened in 1901, by five original investors. In 1923, the property was bought by the Baldwin's and in the 1940's it was given to the Baldwin's granddaughter, Barbara and her husband Gordon Tripp. The Tripp family owned and operated the resort until Barbara's death in November 2012. Mary Ruth grew up coming to Glen Isle Resort as a child in the 1970's. Her favorite memories are the chuckwagon dinners, horseback riding, evening dances, movie nights, and the endless activities that never grew old. Mary Ruth grew up, married Greg, and they started bringing their five boys to Glen Isle Resort. Mary Ruth and Greg were both professionals in education, and visited Glen Isle in the summer of 2016 after an Adele concert. They found their beloved Glen Isle was being sold. After much consideration, they found the idea of not pursuing a dream to be more terrifying than looking back and wondering "why" they didn't...so they began the magical journey to purchase, restore, and bring historical Glen Isle back to life.
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$40
 / night
95%
(37)

Lone Rock Retreat

4 sites · RVs, Tents50 acres · Bailey, CO
Lone Rock Retreat is 50 acres of meadow, forest, ponds, and rocky inclines at the base of the 9,000 ft Lone Rock. You can explore it all in any season. The ponds are stocked with fish and ready for paddle boarding, paddle boating, fishing, swimming, or just relaxing on the dock. Walking/hiking trails are plentiful throughout the property. Find a little peace close to civilization but not too close.
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$75
 / night
93%
(233)

Camp Wilder

5 sites · Lodging, Tents7 acres · Nederland, CO
Welcome to Camp Wilder! We are an off-the-beaten-path camp offering peace and solitude. The main cabin is very special to my family and me. It was passed down as a mining claim from my grandmother who founded it in the '60s. The vision for the land was simply perfect. A small 10 x 10 cabin with the whole mountain to explore and whoever they wished to bring with them. The town of Nederland is 10 minutes down the road where you can fish at Baker Reservoir. Lots of fun little stores in town to keep the family busy. Wildlife is everywhere up by the cabin/campsite with lots of great things to look for around the magical town of Nederland! The cabin sleeps up to 8 with the futon downstairs being very comfortable and cots upstairs in the loft for more sleeping area. Bring your sleeping bags to stay cozy at night. There are lanterns inside to light up your night with a wood stove to keep you warm at night. The ground around it is sloped so you may have a hard time setting up any tents around the cabin. The grocery store is in Nederland where you can buy food, Coleman green propane bottles and wood. Don't forget to take some water with you. There is a 3 burner Coleman stove to cook on with limited pots & pans as well as silverware Road disclaimer, the road to the cabin is one lane dirt road. The drive up to the cabin is pretty good but the turn onto the single dirt road to the cabin has a slight dip, if you have a low-clearance car it may bottom out when you are turning so be careful. No Trailers. They will not be able to turn around once there. Recommend vehicles with AWD. We are @ 10,000 feet and it is a slight hike to the cabin. When leaving please make sure both door locks are locked, put the key in the lock box and mix the code for the next camper.
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$55
 / night
100%
(36)

Overlook Ranch

3 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents11 acres · Estes Park, CO
Incredible views of the towering Rocky Mountains and Continental Divide framed above the small town of Estes Park. The Overlook Ranch sits serenely above the town which has all the necessities you need only 10 minutes away. This 11- acre property has a couple of cabins and other RV sites that will give you that feeling of comfort in sharing that experience and having others around who may offer neighborly help if needed. This property also backs up to a National Forest with over 500 acres for those avid hikers who want that solitude and quiet that a Mountainous Forest can provide. Lake Estes is only 10 minutes away for those who enjoy canoeing, kayaking, and other water activities. You might wonder how close we are to Rocky Mountain National Park? - Fall River Visitor Center & Entrance is 15 Minutes Away. - Beaver Meadows Visitors Center & Entrance is 16 Minutes Away. - Cow Creek Trailhead is 9 Minutes Away. - Lumpy Ridge Trailhead is 7 Minutes Away.
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$55
 / night
94%
(239)

Creekside Paradise

5 sites · Lodging, Tents42 acres · CO
Located perfectly between Boulder, Nederland, and Rocky Mountain National Park, and very close to other stunning hikes, this spot is a great landing pad to have easy access to some of the most beautiful places in the Rockies as well as offering it's own breathtaking scenery. This land is the sacred land of the Arapaho tribe. Chief Niwot and his tribe spent winters here. It is a very special place. The property is a mile long so there is plenty of space with the tent sites being 1/2 mile from the yurt and separate entries for each. There are currently 2 tents sites available, a bell tent, and a yurt.
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$38
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99%
(127)

Gold Nugget Tree House

1 site · Lodging1 acre · Gold Hill, CO
Come visit our sweet little treehouse in the woods. Our property is just steps away from the bustling historic town of Gold Hill, a destination for tourists and road bikers alike. The treehouse is a glamping experience with just enough amenities to keep you comfortable. Food - Bring your cooler with food supplies or take out in Boulder before you head up the mountain. Or grab a coffee, pizza, snack or a glass of wine at the Gold Hill store. If you'd like a full service dining experience, make a reservation for a 5 course meal at the Gold Hill Inn. What To Do: Walk around the historic town of Gold Hill. We promise you will be entertained. Ask a local about the museum, the cemetery, or the historic two room school house, or any other favorite spots they have around the area. Love the woods and nature, but would like a little action? Attend a local live music concert at the Gold Hill Store or the Gold Hill Inn on a beautiful summers night. Drive to Estes Park or Rocky Mountain National Park to explore for the day. Boulder - 20 minutes Nederland - 35 minutes Estes Park - 45 minutes The Treehouse is furnished with Queen size bed and plenty of blankets to keep you warm, but feel free to bring your sleeping bag if you prefer. A roll out twin size feather bed for the floor is available upon request if you have a few more folks joining. We provide a portable toilet with WagBags. Please always pack out all human solid human waste. Gold Hill Store offers a toilet for a minimal fee and the Gold Hill Inn has a toilet for customers. A camp stove is available for outdoor use. The camp stove and the propane heater both use 1 lb propane canisters, so feel free to bring your own fuel to cook and keep you warm. A can of propane is always available for your use of the stove. * A note to novice campers and regular hotel patrons: Though you are in a shelter, you are still exposed to the elements. The treehouse is not insulated. Wind, bugs, and critters may all be a part of the variable treehouse experience mother nature has planned for you. If you are not comfortable camping, getting dirty, swatting flies, being too hot, being too cold, hearing the noises of animals at night, waking up to the sound of magpies, and who knows what else, this experience may not be for you.
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$139
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98%
(852)

Rustic Creek Ranch

32 sites · RVs, Tents160 acres · Bailey, CO
The 160 acre ranch was homesteaded by my grandfather over 100 years ago. He was an engineer. The plan was to use this property as summer grazing for his cattle. The cows were wintered at the other ranch about 10 miles away, which was homesteaded by my great grandfather. Because my grandfather could survey, he made sure the property lines zigzaged up the valley so the small creek was in the middle to provide water for the animals. He chose well. It is a beautiful, quiet place with elk, deer and wild turkeys. There are tons of wild flowers in the summer. Columbines, the Colorado state flower, wild roses, paintbrushes and lots of wild chokecherries. With nice views of nearby mountains, open pastures, evergreen forests and aspen groves, it looks like it did 100 years ago. Plus, there are a couple of ponds for your dogs to cool off in. Since the first cattle, the ranch has also been home to goats, chickens, horses, and now alpacas and llamas. And of course the Great Pyrenees ranch dogs. I had a house built a few years ago and live on the property full time. The ranch is surrounded by Pike National Forest with the Colorado Trail connecting the property in a number of places. Some of the highest ranked mountain bike trails are nearby. There are lots of places on and off the property to hike, mountain bike and ride your horse. On a clear night you can see thousands of stars and hear coyotes howl. For a drone video of the ranch check out: YouTube's Midsummer 2020 Flyover. Elevation 8,000 feet, Average Summer Temperatures: Days 60-80 f, Nights 45-60 f, Sunshine Average 73-80%, Colorado Trail Segment 3, USGS Maps: Windy Peak & Green Mountain quadrangles. This is the official info. Basically, the weather is usually similar to the Denver area - just 10 degrees cooler. About 8 miles away is the small town of Bailey. It has just about everything you might need: small grocery store, gas, laundry, art gallery, a dollar store, hardware store, camping and sports equipment, brew pub, winery, a few restaurants, potable water station and more.
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$35
 / night

The best camping near Arapaho National Forest guide

Overview

About

With a whopping 1.5 million acres of natural landscapes to explore, Arapaho National Forest is tailor-made for outdoor adventures. Five State Scenic Byways run through the forest, along with thousands of miles of hiking, biking, OHV, and horseback riding trails, leading the way to mountain lookouts, forest hideaways, and lakeside swimming spots. If that’s not enough to keep you busy, you can also enjoy boating and canoeing on the lakes, go rafting along Cache la Poudre River, or hit the slopes at the Winter Park, Loveland, and Eldora ski resorts. Campers have options, too, from lakeside recreation areas to primitive camping along the trails.

Notable campgrounds

  • Best for lake views: Arapaho Bay Campground has 81 campsites with swimming, boating, and fishing right on your RV doorstep.
  • Best for horsey Hipcampers: South Fork Campground is one of the few Arapaho campgrounds with horse corrals and direct access to trails.
  • Best for escaping the crowds: Echo Lake Campground has 18 simple sites where you can swim, fish, or hike the Mt Evans Trail. 

Tips for snagging a campsite

  1. Some of the park’s 53 campgrounds can be reserved in advance online or by phone; others are first-come, first-served.
  2. Campsite reservations open 180 days in advance and close four days prior to the booking date. An exception is the Arapaho National Recreation Area, where campsites must be booked a minimum of 5 days in advance. Group campsites can be booked up to 12 months in advance.
  3. Campsites can book up quickly, especially for holiday weekends and during peak season (June-Aug)—make your reservations several months in advance.

When to go

Outdoor activities are enjoyable year-round in Arapaho National Forest, whether hiking amid the spring wildflowers or snowmobiling and cross-country skiing in winter. Peak season runs from mid-May through September, and many campgrounds close outside of this period. Crowds are common at popular recreation areas and lakes, especially in July-August, so make an early start and plan extra travel time to account for traffic. 

Know before you go

  • Arapaho National Forest is divided into five ranger districts—Boulder, Sulphur, Canyon Lakes, Pawnee National Grassland, and Clear Creek—and adjoins the Roosevelt National Forest. It’s about a 1-hour drive from Denver or a 30-minute drive from Boulder to reach the forest.
  • Many areas and trails are free to visit, but passes are required for the Mount Evans, Brainard Lake, and Arapaho National recreation areas. Fees are payable in addition to camping fees, and reservations are required.
  • Dispersed camping is allowed, but be sure you are on state land and avoid free camping near trailheads, day-use car parks, and picnic sites.
  • Cell phone service can be patchy in mountain and wilderness areas.
  • Fire bans are common during dry periods, and some areas have permanent fire restrictions.
  • There are wheelchair-accessible campsites and restrooms at Arapaho National Forest.

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