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Dispersed Camping - Mid to Northern Sawatch

Trailhead conditions, directions, roads, parking, camping, etc. Trailhead Info/Status
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Dispersed Camping - Mid to Northern Sawatch

Postby tundraking » Thu Sep 06, 2012 9:49 am

I know this topic has come up before, but I am looking for a bit more information. What are the county roads that have the most/best dispersed car camping sites in the Mid to Northern Sawatch area? (2WD or easy 4WD roads)

I am aware of the sites on the Winfield Road and also HalfMoon Creek Road (past Massive TH) and have camped at these many times. Are there other roads that have good areas like this? How about dispersed sites on Cottonwood Pass road? I am looking for sites from this road and north of it up to Leadville. I am interested in dispsersed NF or BLM sites as opposed to developed campgrounds. I only need one site, not multiple sites, I am just looking for an area that has a decent amount of sites so as to have a good chance of success of finding one with a decent amount of solitude that is unoccupied . Sites do not necessarily have to be close to 14ers but a good view and proximity to a stream are pluses.

Also does anyone know of good dispersed site in the Mosquito Range and Front Range? There tend to not be as many in these ranges.

Thanks for your suggestions.
Last edited by tundraking on Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Dispersed Camping - Mid to Northern Sawatch

Postby greenhorn1 » Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:16 am

tundraking wrote:I know this topic has come up before, but I am looking for a bit more information. What are the county roads that have the most/best dispersed car camping sites in the Mid to Northern Sawatch area? (2WD or easy 4WD roads)

I am aware of the sites on the Winfield Road and also HalfMoon Creek Road (past Massive TH) and have camped at these many times. Are there other roads that have good areas like this? How about dispersed sites on Cottonwood Pass road? I am looking for sites from this road and north of it up to Leadville. I am interested in dispsersed NF or BLM sites as opposed to developed campgrounds. I only need one site, not multiple sites, I am just looking for an area that has a decent amount of sites so as to have a good chance of success of finding one with a decent amount of solitude that is unoccupied . Sites do not necessarily have to be close to 14ers but a good view and proximity to a stream are pluses.

Also does anyone know of good dispersed site in the Mosquito Range and Front Range? There tend to not be as many in these ranges.

Thanks for your suggesstions.


Cottonwood Pass has plenty of dispersed camping sites past Rainbow Lake that are across the Denny Creek TH Parking Lot. They are right along the river and although there are multiple sites, I haven't seen more than a few campers at a time.
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Re: Dispersed Camping - Mid to Northern Sawatch

Postby tundraking » Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:31 am

greenhorn1 wrote: Cottonwood Pass has plenty of dispersed camping sites past Rainbow Lake that are across the Denny Creek TH Parking Lot. They are right along the river and although there are multiple sites, I haven't seen more than a few campers at a time.


Thanks greenhorn1, appreciate the info!

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Re: Dispersed Camping - Mid to Northern Sawatch

Postby thebeave7 » Thu Sep 06, 2012 3:39 pm

Also a handful of dispersed camping spots across from the Avalanche Gulch TH, outside of the campground (better ones are near Denny Creek).

Also lots of dispersed camping along North Cottonwood Creek on the way to the TH for Harvard/Columbia. Nice shaded spots along the river, road is bumpy dirt, but passable to all vehicles.

There is more dispersed camping just North of Twin Lakes near the South Elbert TH. Take CR24 from Hwy82, take a left on FR125 and camp at one of the large spots before the TH, not much water available at these.

Also some dispersed camping along Independence Pass Rd between 9600-10600ft, though these are right along the road and few (make sure its not one of the many priv drives).

Those are all I can think of at the moment but should give you plenty of options.

Eric
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