The reservoir is fun to explore on paddle boards, and many of the sites have views of the water. You can pick up ice and other basics at the marina, and there is a dump station with two sides so the line moves pretty quickly.
The downside is that campground is not particularly clean, and the campsites have zero shade and zero privacy. They are set really close together.
State Forest State Park is enormous, but we were in a small campground with only five sites—four on them are right on the water (and one is reserved for those needing an accessible site).
We were able to paddle board and fish right from our campsite, and had a wonderful fresh trout dinner.
We stopped in the visitor center for maps and hiking recommendations. We settled on Lake Agnes. It was a steep climb but well worth it. We alternated looking at the beauty of Lake Agnes and watching the skiers hiking to the top and skiing what was left of the snow.
The campground was fine, not great. Highway noise 24/7 and although our site was "on the river" there was an embankment which blocked the view.
There was a pretty fast current—I wish we had brought tubes and life vests so that we could have enjoyed the water. It was way too fast for our paddle boards.
The highlight of the campground was the steep cliff on the other side of the river. We quickly realized that two Bald Eagles were sharing a nest up high, and we enjoyed watching them while we were there.
It's a very small campground with sites right along the river. There is a hairpin switchback to get into the lower loop and the website states that it is not accessible to trailers longer than 20 feet. Our friends cancelled because of that statement, but we watched some large trucks with long trailers negotiate it without issue.
The Greyrock Trailhead is close by and we enjoyed hiking to the rock.
The only drawback to this campground is the rattlesnakes. The camp host warned us not to walk in the tall grass because they have caused trouble to other campers and their dogs. We didn't see any slithering around, but we found two dead rattlers on the road near our site so I don't think she was exaggerating.
The sites are close together but many had a fair amount of shade. The park is quite large, with opportunities for hiking and getting out on the water.
White Star is a particularly clean campground. The hosts were very friendly, and dropped off a map and a free day pass to park at the lakes.
None of the camp sites are on the water, but you can walk over in just a few minutes, or drive over with your gear. There is a trail that goes all the way around both lakes—it's very picturesque. I recommend staying on the outer loop—those sites have more space between them, and a bit more privacy.
We had limited cell service in the campground—enough for texting using both Verizon and AT&T.
Loved this campground. Quiet and clean and unforgettable sunsets over the lake. I highly recommend hiking up to Scarp Ridge. It's steep, but you get 360 degree views.
The best part of this campground is the large lake. There is no shade and it was very windy when we were there (September). The picnic tables were filthy (appeared to be years of accumulated bird poo) and I spent an hour scrubbing ours before I was willing to put my tablecloth on it. The bench was just as bad.
That said, mornings were calm so we went out on the water early.
Camping along Pearl Lake is a dream come true. It's a quiet lake, surrounded by mountains and forest, perfect for paddle boarders. There is also a nice hike that goes over the dam and then climbs up and away from civilization.
Some of sites are along the lake, others are on an upper loop with views of the lake, or of the valley behind the park. Note that site 29 (and a few others) have stairs leading from the street to the campsite.
We stayed along Granite Reservoir. It's lovely, but we had to listen to jet skis and motor boats during the day. The bike trails are terrific, but as paddle boarders, next time we will head to the smaller Crystal Reservoir, where motorized boats are prohibited.
This is a very small campground. Of the six available sites, one is reserved for walk-ins. Our site was along Maroon Creek, and nestled in a thick aspen grove. With our camping pass, we were able to park in the Maroon Bells parking lot so we were able to catch both a sunrise and a sunset. (Don't miss the sunrise!) There were a lot of biting bugs—both at the campsite and on the trails—so come prepared, Crater Lake is a short but rewarding hike out of the Maroon Bells parking lot, but I also recommend driving over to hike to both American Lake and Cathedral Lake. Both have significant elevation gain, so if you are going in the summer, head up early, or late.
We enjoyed watching the kayakers and rafters floating by during the day, and listening to the roaring water at night. We found trails on the other side of the access road that offer beautiful views of the Collegiate Peaks and the bridge itself is very picturesque.
The lake is lovely and there is a trail for mountain bikes and hikers that goes halfway around.
The reservoir is beautiful but the campsites are right next to I 70 and you can hear the traffic all day and all night. That said, if you’re going, bring your paddleboard or kayak or rent a sailboat. And you can bike along the trail that runs all the way around the reservoir.
No dogs allowed on trails. They are allowed in the campsite, and on the roads, but that’s it. The campsites have shade and space, and there are beautiful trails for hiking and mountain biking, but the no dogs is a line for us.
We don't have little ones anymore, but there was a huge playground that would be a bonus for those who do.