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You don’t have to go far to enjoy the best Pike National Forest camping spots. This stunning forest offers some of the most dramatic views in the Rockies. Do you want to appreciate Colorado’s famous fourteeners? Then this is the place for you. If you’re an angler, hiker, or climber, the Pike National Forest has everything you need. The Pike National Forest boasts over a million acres of wildlife, recreation, and knockout beauty. You don’t have to travel far to enjoy some of the most incredible scenery in Colorado. These are the best Pike National Forest camping spots to get the most from this impressive swath of wilderness.

The Best Pike National Forest Camping


1. Lone Duck Campground

Image from The Dyrt camper Megan L.

Lone Duck Campground is a short 20-minute drive from Colorado Springs. It sits at the base of Pikes Peak, making it the perfect basecamp for hikers and climbers who want to conquer the famous fourteener. The campground has sites for tents and full-hookup RVs, as well as cabin rentals. Sites come with resort-style amenities like Wi-Fi, laundry, a pool and game room, sports fields, a fishing pond, and more. You’re at the doorstep of Ring The Peak, a multi-use trail circumnavigating the Pikes Peak Massif. If you don’t want to make the trek, you can drive the scenic Pikes Peak Highway or enjoy a guided ATV tour. Lone Duck is the premier destination for campers who want to explore Colorado’s most notorious mountain.

“We stayed here in August for almost 2 weeks even though the campground doesn’t have many full hook up sites (which we did not have). It is a small campground so everything is close… easy access to the office, store, bathrooms and showers, along with a nice pool and a little fishing pond and game room for kids. Love that the sites are mostly shaded sites and maybe best of all is how close it is to a lot of attractions in the Colorado Springs area without being right in the busyness of it. It is a high enough elevation that the temperatures were very comfortable. The staff is great and very attentive, place is well kept up with and clean. We were glad we found this place!!”Todd W.

Campground Details:

  • Price: $43-78
  • Number of sites: 66
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

2. Colorado Campground

Image from The Dyrt camper Matt M.

Colorado Campground is 25 miles outside of Colorado Springs, next to Manitou Lake. There are campsites for tents and non-electric RVs, with fire rings, vault toilets, and potable water. Weekly campfire programs are offered to educate and entertain the whole family. You’re right next to charming Manitou Lake, where you can drop your canoe or fish for trout. You can walk to the lake or take the multi-use Centennial Trail. You’re also near two OHV trails that feature stunning views of the surrounding forest. Colorado is a great place to get away and enjoy the relaxation you can only find in Pike National Forest.

“Colorado campground is situated outside of Woodland Park and right next to Manitou lake. This is a great area central to the Pikes Peak wilderness area so many trails are nearby and activities while still being close to civilization. The CG itself is large, but the sites are well spaced apart…it is a primitive CG with picnic table, fire pit and gravel pull through or back-in spots. There are water spigots, vault toilets and garbage cans equally dispersed throughout. In the summer they have an educational series also on the weekends of various nature/wildlife “seminars” that are great for the kids in their small amphitheater. As others have stated its a short walk to the lake for fishing and canoeing if you choose.”Neil B.

Campground Details:

  • Price: $23
  • Number of sites: 80
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

3. Spruce Grove Campground

Spruce Grove Campground is about an hour from Colorado Springs, deep in Pike National Forest. There are sites for tents and non-electric RVs up to 35 feet. Amenities include fire rings, vault toilets, and potable water. The campground is at a lofty 8,600 vertical feet, with incredible views of South Taryall Peak. Dip your feet into the adjacent Taryall Creek or peep the inspiring rock formations on the Lizard Rock Trail. The trail meets up with the Brookside-McCurdy Trail, where you can hike the Lost Creek Wilderness for days. Spruce Grove is a boulderer’s paradise, surrounded by granite castles, bluffs, and arches. The campground can be busy in the summer, so make your reservations early.

“My family has camped at this campground for a few years. It’s one of our favorites. Surrounded by giant, boulder-filled hills the scenery is fantastic (as is scrambling up those hills). The sky at night is gorgeous and we recently enjoyed the Milky Way, Jupiter, and Saturn. It has hiking (Lizard Rock Trail) and Tarryall Creek to play or fish in. Lots to do around there! We’ve had a few mix ups/issues with reservations in the past but it all got worked out.”Molly R.

Campground Details:

  • Price: $17
  • Number of sites: 27
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

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4. The Crags

Image from The Dyrt camper Fred B.

The Crags campground is an hour from Colorado Springs, bordering the east side of Pikes Peak. This quiet campground has sites for tents and small, non-electric RVs. The spacious campsites come with fire rings, potable water, and vault toilets. The surrounding views are straight from a postcard. And you’re right next to the Crags and Devils Playground trails, taking you to the summit of Pikes Peak. The Crags offers the quiet respite of dispersed camping, with a few creature comforts. It’s a gorgeous alpine camping area that inspires reverence for the beauty around you. Sites are first-come-first-served, so arrive early to get the best spot.

“Beautiful 4 mile drive up a winding dirt and gravel road through the canyons with the stream next to you. Campsites a little close but not so bad. The scenery is out of this world. Divide Colorado is 20 minutes away. Host was very polite and knowledgeable of the area. Only 17 sites available so get there early. Something about having a campsite with a creek running through it that makes it special. Vault toilet available and there was a hand pump well next to site 11.”Fred B.

Campground Details:

  • Price: $18
  • Number of sites: 17
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

5. Thunder Ridge

Image from The Dyrt camper Cody

The Thunder Ridge campground is 30 miles from Colorado Springs, overlooking the Rampant Reservoir. There are sites for tents and smaller non-electric RVs. Amenities include potable water, vault toilets, and fire rings. The 500-acre reservoir is a great place to fish for trout. And the 14-mile Rampart Reservoir Trail offers incredible views of the lake and surrounding forest. You have access to several other trails, where you can hike or bike your way through the dense mixed conifer and watch the wildlife play. Thunder Ridge is the perfect spot for anglers, hikers, and city-dwellers who need a break from the daily hustle. If you can’t find a spot at Thunder Ridge, check out the neighboring Meadow Ridge campground.

“First off it is in the middle of nowhere, so it is quiet. The views are breathtaking. The walk around the lake (12 miles) is awesome and gorgeous. The site does not have any hookups, it does have toilets.”Joshua

Campground Details:

  • Price: $23
  • Number of sites: 21
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

6. Round Mountain

The Round Mountain campground is about an hour outside the city, just north of Eleven Mile Canyon. This rustic campground has sites for tents and non-electric RVs up to 35 feet. Sites come with fire rings, vault toilets, and potable water. You’re a few miles from the Eleven Mile Canyon Recreation Area, where you can swim in Lake George, raft the South Platte River, or climb the steep granite walls. You’re also a short drive to Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument, where you’ll find many fossil deposits. The campground is surrounded by rugged peaks and ponderosa pines, instilling a sense of awe. Round Mountain is a therapeutic camping experience where you can rest, play, and return to life feeling rejuvenated.

“On my last trip to Colorado I had crossed paths with this campground and vowed that this time I would make it a stop on my journey. I love the location and though it is in a decently traveled area it is not close enough to the road to hear any traffic. The location is great for having that Colorado forest feeling for sure with towering pines and great spacing around the campground itself. I loved how quiet this camp was, how open it was and that it provided great access to the wildlife area which was only a short drive up the road.”Crystal C.

Campground Details:

  • Price: $17
  • Number of sites: 16
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

7. Happy Meadows

Image from The Dyrt camper Jenn S.

The Happy Meadows campground is aptly named. It’s an hour from Colorado Springs, on the shores of the South Platte River. There are sites for tents and non-electric RVs up to 20 feet. Sites come with fire rings, potable water, and vault toilets. The river is perfect for inner tubing, swimming, and rafting. And you’re only a few miles from the Eleven Mile Reservoir, where you can canoe or fish for dinner. Take in the towering granite walls, peep the local wildlife, or trek the many trails nearby. Several scenic drives in the area feature the gorgeous peaks that make Pike National Forest famous. Happy Meadows is a lively camping spot surrounded by immense beauty, abundant recreation, and curious woodland creatures.

“This was a quaint little campground that had good access to the river through one of the sites, and was a good location for tubers; within walking distance of good enter and exit spots. The vault toilet was very clean and well maintained and the sites are a good size. Beautiful scenery.”Melissa J.

Campground Details:

  • Price: $17
  • Number of sites: 8
  • RV sites: Yes
  • Fires allowed: Yes
  • Pets allowed: Yes

 

Do yourself a favor and bask in the soothing nature of these Pike National Forest camping spots. You’ll thank yourself later.

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