Camp in the San Luis Valley below snow-capped mountains and surrounded by sage brush and cacti in this high alpine desert. Nestled between the Sangre de Cristo and San Juan Mountains at 7500’ in elevation, this dispersed campsite gives you magnificent views and a feeling of peaceful privacy.
Easy access to Great Sand Dunes National Park, Mt. Blanca, Zapata Falls, and Hooper Hot Springs
This area is great for photography, hiking, biking, horseback riding, and solitude.
Staying at Rabbit Hole Ranch
I spent 2 nights at this campsite with my friends. It’s really the bare minimum you could expect from a campsite, fire pit and flat space for tents but the views and proximity to the sand dunes are great. There is no bathroom and no trees but the sites are fairly spread out. The big white dogs that live at the campground spent some time with us and they are very sweet, some horses were also in the field behind the campground for a night and we saw some swift foxes one morning as well. There is limited cell service at the site and getting to it and it can even be a little difficult to determine where the sites are in the daylight, so it would not exactly be recommended to arrive in the dark.
My roommate and I reserved two nights at this spot on a whim the day before we went there. Our expectations were so far exceeded when we arrived. The ranch is super out of the way from many buildings or even many other people for that matter. The uneven ground makes walking around the landscape seem like an optical illusion. We met two gorgeous Great Pyreneese dogs that hung out with us almost the entire time we stayed there! I cannot wait to come back here next year and spend more time in the most beautiful place I’ve ever been.
Nice quiet dispersed campground near Sand Dunes National Park. It is a bit of a trek to get to, but with the busy season, it was nice to get away from big crowds. We got there earlier in the day in order to get a good spot and were the first ones for the weekend. Our spot was amazing with established fire pit and tree stumps for sitting. The view was incredible. We had a nice flat area to park our pop up. We enjoyed the spot for a quiet place to camp with our family. The dogs on site kept our fur girl entertained and made it feel safe. They had firewood for sale which was awesome. The area can get very windy so we were unable to make a fire one of the nights which is ok. Good reason the go to Calvillo’s in Alamosa. (About 35 min away)
I chose this spot to scout for my Dyrt Ranger Mission because I had stayed at a similar place right near here last Summer (see Zapata Under the Stars review) and I was excited to get back out into dispersed wilderness again. The views and solitude of the desert did not disappoint.
After booking I realized I wanted to add an extra night and the hosts got back to me immediately saying it wasn't a problem. I also asked them about the dogs since I was bringing mine to camp with us. They said the dogs were very friendly and it shouldn't be a problem at all. They also let me know I could purchase wood at the site.
We ended up arriving after dark on Friday night and following the directions wasn't a problem. The directions from the hosts after booking are like a scavenger hunt of sorts. It was a bit hard to make out in the dark, but thankfully, we are pretty good with directions…and puzzles. The site is approximately 10 miles from the main road.
This is a dispersed style campground for the most part. There is one site that has a landing pad, grill barrel, and was near the PooLoo and the Woodstock but the others were marked by little orange flags (we noticed those in the morning). Since there weren't clearly marked sites so we did drive around a bit until we saw what looked like remnants of a former campsite and pulled in there. There weren't big spots to fit our tipi tent but we made it work. I think most of the sites are made for smaller 2 man tents.
We were immediately greeted by one very friendly Pyrenees dog named Kaylee who took an immediate liking to our dogs and began playing with our youngest pup. They seemed to really take to each other. Another one showed up named Deja and seemed to be the protector of the campground. Deja was not a fan of our playful puppy and Deja made it known that our dog was not to be around her. We kept a close eye when Deja and Kaylee came around since they looked so much alike, our puppy was confused as to which one would play and which one would growl and take him down.
That night Deja and Kaylee slept outside out tent the majority of the night while our pups were inside the tent. One of the outside dogs began barking nonstop in the middle of the night and wouldn't stop for a couple hours. This happened both nights. Thankfully I had my aftershokz headphones (with the ear plugs) so that was my saving grace in falling asleep through the barking.
Other than the random dog drama and barking, this site was fantastic! It was quiet and peaceful. Had great views of Mt. Blanca, the Sand Dunes, and easy access to town if needed.
Bathroom: The pooloo was hilarious (see video). The concept and view was fantastic! It was just a bit too close to the big site. If we were the only ones camping there it would have been perfect, but it was far from where we camped and since there were other people camping at the large site, it was a bit awkward to use when kids are running around that can see your face.
Water: We brought plenty of water so we didn't need to see the pump, but if you contact he host, they can operate the well water pump for you.
Firewood: Firewood is for sale on site. Unbundled but large stacks of wood. $6 per stack and it's on the honor system. So please make sure you are being good humans!
Local attractions: From the main road, you are about 30 mins to Sand Dunes National Park, 50 mins from Zapata Falls, 45 mins to Del Norte, and 30 mins from Alamosa. There is also an Alligator and Reptile Refuge about 20 mins North. There is also a large pool/hot spring in Hooper, Co near the refuge (this pool is alligator free).
As a Dyrt Ranger I get the opportunity to receive products to review and a month ago I got these for a biking trip that ended up being cancelled. I wasn't intentionally going to use these and review them on this trip but they ended up being needed for both nights so I figured it is the perfect time! The product is the Air Trekz by Aftershokz https://aftershokz.com/collections/wireless/products/trekz-air.
I was super curious when I received these headphones.I can't use normal headphones because they are either are super painful or fall out since my ear canals are very small.
These headphone ROCK! They are super comfortable and stylish. I found that I started using them for just about everything, driving on the phone, riding my bike, walking the dogs, hiking, and even sleeping when it's noisy. As my boyfriend put it "this is the end to people's tone deaf singing, since they can now hear what they sound like".
They are a bit big for my head so the back strap falls down a bit but they never fall off. They come with a set of ear plugs so you can focus on the sound if preferred too.
They come with a really sturdy case that stands up on its own. The base is wider so they don’t get smashed or broken when put in a bag.
The sound quality if pretty good considering you are hearing it from your cheek bones instead of your ear drums. podcasts are clear, music is fluid, and even instrumental music is clear. The only genre that gets a bit wonky is music with heavy bass. The sound just can't compare to professional headphones when it comes to bass.
For the purpose of using these for our trip, I used them on a hike and while sleeping when the dogs outside the tent started barking late night. I was able to fall asleep on the side of my head without worrying about painful ears. They worked like a charm.