Sweetwater Lake Campground

campsite at Sweetwater Lake Campground

**Bear activity has been increasing.  For this reason a "food storage order" is in effect at all developed campgrounds on the Eagle/Holy Cross Ranger District, and the Piney Guard Station, Tigiwon Lodge, Mount of the Holy Cross Overlook, Homestake Road FSR 703, and Nolan Creek Road. This order requires all food and refuse to be stored in hard-sided vehicles, approved bear-resistant containers, or supended at least 10 feet clear of the ground at all points and four feet horizontally from any supporting tree or pole. This order has been issued to provide for public safety and wildlife conservation. Hopefully it will reduce wildlife habituation problems. **


Sweetwater Campground, elevation 7,740 feet, is on the south end of 72 acre, Sweetwater Lake. The vegetation surrounding the campground and the sites is scrub oak, serviceberry, wild rose and willow. High limestone cliffs tower above the area on two sides.


Sweetwater Campground has 9 partially shaded campsites with picnic tables and fire ring grills. This campground has small sites. Six of the sites can accommodate vehicles up to 30 feet long. There is one vault toilet.


TRAILS - There are three popular hiking and horseback riding trails beginning at the end of the campground. The Ute Trail, #2031, (9.4 miles) goes up to Deep Lake on the Flattops. The Cross Creek Trail, #1855, (6.5 miles) travels through sagebrush flats full of wildflowers and aspen forests to the Sweetwater Trail, #1854. The short Scenic Overlook trail, (500 yards) has nice views of the lake and a waterfall.

FISHING - Sweetwater Lake offers good fishing from the shore or small boats for brook, brown and rainbow trout, as well as kokanee salmon.

BOATING - Canoes and rowboats are popular on this lake, but some electric motors are used. No gasoline-powered motors are allowed on Sweetwater Lake. Hand-launched boats only since there is no public boat ramp. Sweetwater Campground is the only public access to Sweetwater Lake.

There is a printable Recreation Quicksheet for this campground which is complete with directions, details, and other information about this campground.

The Forest Service recently acquired the 488-acre Sweetwater Ranch, which greatly expands the public access in this area. We are managing it with Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the Eagle Valley Land Trust. For more information about this area, visit the Eagle Valley Land Trust Sweetwater Lake page. 

At a Glance

Reservations: First Come, First Serve
Fees: Check our forest-wide campground table for current pricing. 
Open Season: 5/21/2021 - 9/30/2021
Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Dotsero
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: Directions from Eagle: Travel 12 miles west of Eagle on I-70 to Dotsero. Go north on Colorado River Road for 7 miles. Turn left onto the Sweetwater Creek road. Stay on road for 10 miles, then turn left at the sign for Sweetwater Campground.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Campground Camping

No. of Sites 9 single site(s)
Reservation Info Not reservable

RV Camping

No. of Sites 9
Reservation Info not reservable
Pavement Type for Parking dirt
Hookup - Water no
Size Restrictions Six of the sites can accommodate vehicles up to 30 feet long
Hookup - Sewer no
Dump Stations no
Hookups - Electric no
Corrals Six of the sites can accommodate vehicles up to 30 feet long

Day Hiking


Horse Riding


Scenic Driving

Vehicle Clearence any but the lowest of passenger cars can drive this dirt road

Boating - Non-Motorized

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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