Camping Program: Regional Overview

 
 
Fallen beetle-kill tree just misses a tent in a campground - Click on this photo to view a larger version and to view a link to the Regional Mountain Pine Beetle Information webpageSafety of visitors is the number one concern of the US Forest Service. An effect of the on-going Mountain Pine Beetle infestation throughout our Region is the danger of beetle-killed trees falling, not only in developed campgrounds, but throughout the forests along backcountry hiking trails and roads, as well. If the campground you are interested in has been closed or will have a delayed opening, call the local Ranger District [PDF file 433 KB] office that is closest to the campground for updated information. If you already have made a campsite reservation in an affected campground through Recreation.gov, you will be notified of any changes by Reserve America. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience this situation may cause.
 
Most Campgrounds are Open From Memorial Day Through Labor Day
 
Campsite in Sugarloaf Campground, Laramie Ranger District, in the Medicine Bow National Forest, located in southeast Wyoming. Click on this photo to view a link to the Sugarloaf Campground Information webpage.Whether you're driving a motorhome, pulling a trailer or just looking for a place to pitch a tent and get away from civilization, one of the over 500 campgrounds in the 17 national forests and seven national grasslands managed by the US Forest Service in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, and most of South Dakota and Wyoming will have a spot just right for you!
 
The main types of camping that are allowed in the Rocky Mountain Region's national forests and grasslands are listed below. Click on one of the camping types and you will be taken to another page for more information:
 
Backpacking icon - Brown square with white backpackers. Click to view a link to the Regional Backpacking Information webpage.
Backpacking - Overnight backpacking trips should be undertaken only by those who are accustomed to hiking mountain trails and are familiar with backpacking techniques.
   
Campground Camping icon - Brown square with white tent and dollar sign. Click to view a link to the Regional Campground Camping Overview webpage.
Campground Camping - Traditional camping in a developed US Forest Service campground with a tent pad, covered grill and parking spot. Be aware that check-out times are generally 1:00 pm and check-in times are generally 2:00 pm.
   
Dispersed Camping icon - Brown square with white tent. Click to view a link to the Regional Dispersed Camping Overview webpage.
Dispersed Camping - These types of camping areas can be in either Designated or Non-Designated areas, as determined by the local Ranger District [PDF file 433 KB] office, and there are generally no services and reservations are not available (only First-Come, First-Served).
   
Horse Camping/Riding icon - Brown square with white horse and tent. Click to view a link to the Regional Horse Camping/Riding Information webpage.
Horse Camping/Riding - Saddle and pack stock are not allowed in most campgrounds, unless specifically noted. A permit is notrequired to ride horses or use pack animals on US Forest Service lands within the Rocky Mountain Region, but you must follow all Weed Free Forage regulations along with any local special orders or rules that may apply to the area you will be camping in.
   
Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Camping/Riding icon - Brown square with white jeep and tent. Click to view a link to the OHV Camping/Riding Information webpage.
Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Camping/Riding - These types of camping areas are essentially Dispersed Camping sites and can be in either Designated or Non-Designated areas, as determined by the local Ranger District [PDF file 433 KB] office. There are generally no services and reservations are not available (only First-Come, First-Served). Remember to park your vehicles off the road so there are no chances for an accident!
 

 
Red & white campfire icon and Camping & Firewood Poster icon. Click to view a link to the full size Camping & Firewood poster [Portable Document Format file 120 kilobytes]Purchase Firewood Locally to Protect Our Forests!
Destructive insects and diseases can get a free ride into our Region in firewood brought in from out of state. For more information, click on the icons or contact the US Forest Service's Regional Forest Health Management office at 303.275.5463.
 
Bighorn National Forest Visitor Map [Northern Portion 2010], WY - Click to view a larger image and to view a link to a zoomable version of the mapA National Forest (NF) or National Grassland (NG) Visitor Map is useful in showing the location of developed campgrounds, main roads, forest roads, trails, wilderness areas, scenic areas, private land, Forest Supervisor and Ranger District offices and other features. To order a Rocky Mountain Region National Forest or National Grassland Visitor Map, please contact the National Forest Store.
 
James Peak (el. 13,294 ft.) at dawn. The James Peak Wilderness, located in north-central Colorado, is managed by the Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests. Click on this photo to view a larger version and to view the wilderness information page. Whether you are camping in a developed campground, backpacking far away from civilization in the backcountry, dispersed camping or using your horse or pack animals, all campers should follow the ideals of Leave No Trace and practice the concept of Pack It In - Pack It Out!
 
Click on any of the Leave No Trace principles listed below to learn more about how they apply when you are camping anywhere in the Rocky Mountain Region: