You may shake your head and laugh, but I’ve already booked camping for April and May of 2018. Why so far in advance? Because spring is only six months away.
A Year of Colorado State Parks
2018 will be my Year of Colorado State Parks. I’m going to get a State Parks Pass for the motor home, and I’m going to plan my Jeep trips around those camping weekends. How many can I stay at in one year? I’m looking forward to finding out. There are a lot of Colorado State Parks, so I am going to have a busy season.
The plan is to start the spring east or near I-25 at lower elevations. It’s still winter in the mountains until June, and I’m not going to buy chains for the motor home and drive in snowy conditions. Luckily, there are lots of places that meet those requirements. This spring, I’ll be camping at Jackson Lake State Park, St. Vrain State Park, Cherry Creek State Park, Cheyenne Mountain State Park, and Lake Pueblo State Park. Cheyenne Mountain is almost completely booked already!
But Why Now?
State and national park campgrounds are the first to fill up. There are many people who are just waiting for a date to pass so they can book six months in advance, which is the cutoff date for many campgrounds. If you want a good spot, you’ll need to be in that group of people with your fingers crossed. You still need to book a month or two in advance at the very least if you want a spot at all at some of the premiere spots.
I would recommend planning your summer now. The Guide to Colorado’s State Parks is a great resource, providing an overview of everything (you can pick up a hard copy at any state park office or request a brochure). All state parks do not offer overnight camping, and some of them have spots available for people without reservations.
If you change your mind and it’s more than 14 days before your reservation begins, you can cancel it. You will forfeit the $10 reservation fee, but that is a small price to pay in order to get a great spot. I’d recommend thinking about 2018 now while you still have options.