Glacier Basin Campground (8,500 feet) is adjacent to Estes Park in the awe-inspiring Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado.
From lush valleys to craggy peaks with elevations reaching over 14,000 feet, visitors are provided opportunities for countless breathtaking experiences and adventures.
Scenic driving, hiking, backpacking, fishing, horseback riding and wildlife viewing are popular activities in the park.
Rocky Mountain National Park has 355 miles of hiking trails that range from flat lakeside strolls to steep mountain climbs. Visitors enjoy the park's various lake trails (Bear Lake, Cub Lake, Mills Lake), waterfall trails (Adams Falls, Alberta Falls, Ouzel Falls) and summit trails (Deer Mountain, Twin Sisters Peaks, Flattop Mountain).
The park offers some unforgettable scenic driving routes, including Trail Ridge Road and Old Fall River Road. Trail Ridge Road reaches 12,183' above sea level and is America's highest continuous highway. It climbs above the park's evergreen forests to its windswept alpine tundra, where visitors enjoy sweeping panoramic views of the surrounding peaks and valleys.
Driving along the historic Old Fall River Road is like motoring through an earlier era. Constructed in 1920, this steep, one-way, uphill, gravel road punctuated by switchbacks, quietly leads travelers from Horseshoe Park through the park's wilderness to Fall River Pass, 11796' above sea level.
Several visitor centers are within the park, offering ranger-led activities, education and history about the park, and seasonal nighttime programs.
Glacier Basin Campground contains several group and family tent-only sites, as well as RV sites without hookups. Each campsite is equipped with a picnic table, fire ring with grate and tent pad. Roads and parking spurs are paved. Flush toilets and drinking water are provided.
Rocky Mountain National Park's free shuttle bus stops in the campground, which is also across the street from Park & Ride, the park's main shuttle system hub. The shuttle system provides access to many park trailheads throughout the Bear Lake corridor and to the town of Estes Park.
Due to a pine beetle epidemic, all the trees in the C Loop, D Loop and the Group Loop have been removed, leaving little to no shade in these areas. However, the tree removal has opened up beautiful views of the mountains.
A pleasant mix of Douglas fir, Lodgepole pine, Ponderosa pine and the occasional Engelmann spruce, forests the campground, offering equal amounts of sun and shade. Grasses, shrubs and seasonal wildflowers fill the open meadows.
Wildlife is plentiful in the park, and while mule deer and the majestic Rocky Mountain elk are the most commonly seen, black bear, coyote, bighorn sheep and moose inhabit the region as well.
The town of Estes Park lies just outside the park's main east entrances, and is a short drive from Glacier Basin Campground. Dining, shopping, rafting, fly fishing, horseback riding, and golfing opportunities await. Lake Estes offers boating, sailboarding, and fishing.
ADA Access: N
Loved this campground. The tent areas were pretty open, but plenty of options if you book super early.
Make reservations early. Fills up fast because it is such a great place to camp. Nice pads. Firing rings.Accessible bathrooms. No showers. Firewood sold next to the entrance by the same husband and wife that have been selling firewood there for 35 years. There is a shed full of firewood. The wife was selling firewood from the back of their truck when we visited. They only sell firewood at certain times so check for times so look to your left on the way into the campground. Bear Lake is accessible and the view are stunning. Lots of trails of varying lengths and the difficulty: from easy to more challenging. You can hike fro Glacier Basin to Sprague Lake. It is popular fly fishing spot and there are hiking trails that branch off from the trails around the lake. You can bike from the campground to Bear Lake. Bear Meadows Visitor's Center is close by. It's worth a visit. "The Beaver Meadows Visitor Center is open daily, except Christmas. Located just outside of Estes Park on US 36, it features a bookstore and movie theater with regular free showings of park films. A few minutes’ walk down a paved sidewalk behind the center is the backcountry desk, the only place on the east side where you can reserve and purchase permits for backcountry campsites in person. Shuttle bus pickup is in the parking lot next to the bathrooms." MyRockyMountain.com
The campground is quite nice. It has well made tent pads, dishwashing station and a bathroom with full plumbing. Sites are kinda close together but it’s not to bad because it is fairly well covered by trees.
Can’t beat the views of the mountains either!
Glacier Basin is definitely a great location to stay for doing hikes in the Bear Lake trailhead area. It's right across the street from the park and ride, which is a must unless you get to the trailhead by 7:30 am. The sites are not very secluded so expect to be within chatting range of your neighbors. That can be nice but don't expect to have a quiet time there because it is always packed in the summer. There is firewood for sale (small bills only) along with some ice creams which is a great touch.
I love this campground! it is always so clean and it peaceful. occasionally there are some disruptive people, but people are always coming and going, so it’s not terrible. The rangers are close by and always helpful, they even do coffe with a ranger or ranger talks. The bathrooms don’t have showers, but they are always kept clean. The sites themselves are nice with a fire pit and a larger picnic table. I highly recommend this campground.
this remains one of my favorite places to camp. it’s so peaceful and you really can’t beat camping in a National Park. we stayed in the B loop, which I recommend because the C loop has no shade because the trees died from a disease. I highly recommend this campground.
This Rocky Mountain National Park campground is fantastic. I tent camped with my husband for 3 nights in Loop B. We saw tents and all sizes of campers many with families. Our tent site included a nice tent pad, picnic table, fire ring, and a shared bear box. The fire ban had been lifted and we could buy fire wood each evening-and ice cream! Clean bathrooms with flush toilets. This campground is very close to a number of trails. We hiked the Sprague Lake Trail. It’s 2 miles round trip and pretty easy. Breathtaking views. If you don’t hike, you can drive all the way to the Trail Ridge gift shop and cafe at the top. This park fills up quickly-amost 3 million visitors a year-so plan to get started early. We love RMNP. We will be back this fall!
Beautiful views throughout the park getting to the campground.
Roomy sites. Concrete slab and fire pit. Area to park. Plenty of restrooms. Food storage containers at each site.
Beautiful night views with the stars. It does get cold even in mid-July so dress appropriately for nighttime.
Campground located next to the park and ride shuttle station which was a huge plus. while there are no electric hookups the “comfort station” has running water and flush toilets. they do nightly programs for people of all ages and the rangers were awesome to work with. Its an awesome location in the park and has plenty of sItes fo choose from with 150 different sits.
Best of National Park camping ! This was a great weekend. We camped in our 26' Travel Trailer
Pros: Stunning Views, Clean Campground, Bear Boxes available at almost all tent sites. Small stream to fish at the entrance to campground. Great trails to hike close to campground. Shuttle stop at Campground to get around the park.
Cons: No electric Hooks Ups, No Shade, Close to Neighbors, Dump Station in awkward place. Site said it would fit our camper…it did but it was tight getting in and out due to big boulders along site.
Lots to do in Rocky Mountain National Park. I suggest a picnic lunch at Tuxedo Picnic Area along the stream. Afternoon trip down to Estes Park is always fun. Can't wait to go here again!