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Old 06-13-2016, 11:40 AM   #1
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Out hunting for dispersed camping this weekend

SO I spent all day saturday driving county and forest roads looking for places to camp. Just trying to get away from the $50 per weekend fees.

I did some online research, chatted with the National forest / Colorado rangers for the area, but in the end, you just have to go look. I am also trying to find camping that is less than @2 hours from the house, not on or near a major road, I can access with the rig (its 30 ft long).

Went to the Deckers area and headed in on Forest Road 211. Drove around the area of the Hayman fire from 2002. Interesting story about a forest service tech who started the fire and it became the largest wildfire in CO history. She served 15? years and they still were not 100% on her reason for starting the fire.

All the hills that are green were covered in trees before the fire.


I found a number of great off the beaten path locations that I wish I still had my old popup. It has HD off road and would have been great on some of these back roads, but I can't go there now with the new larger rig.

Found this little fella abandoned in a ditch, no bodies inside.



I should have taken more pictures up in the mtns. But got caught just looking scouting and cleaning dog vomit. My sidekick lost her breakfast about 3 hours in. Didn't have the heart to tell her it was going to be another 5 hours before we ended this miserable trip. I did let her run a little and that seemed to make things okay


Next weekend hope to go to one of the spots and then keep looking for more. Kind of risky to get all the way up there and then if you don't have a couple backup camping spots, you get stuck with, "where do we go to bed?". Its not like the rig just fits anywhere.

I was beat when I got home. 8 hours of focused on forest road driving. Some was easy packed roads, some was pretty rough and I just had to get through to find the next section. Over 100 miles but only 5? on paved roads.
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Old 06-13-2016, 08:18 PM   #2
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We do the same, just in Northern Colorado. After getting our 40' toyhauler I brought it into the same area we used to take our pop up into Walden dunes. That was an experience with lesson learned. Won't do that camp spot again...

Great pics by the way. If I recall correctly that fire was started due to her burning a "lost love letter". That fire threatened the ex wife's families house back then when I was married to her. That was crazy.....
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Old 06-13-2016, 09:04 PM   #3
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Where in NO Colorado do you look / go? Being in COS I am trying to head south to avoid the Denver crowd (or at least the majority of them).

I plan on going this week or weekend to do some more research in the 11 Mile Canyon area.

Just looked online to see if any actual reservable spots were available in Central CO area. I could find nothing. Sort of dictates one is able to make all your reservations at the beginning of the season or you commit to disbursed options in the forest.

You remember correct on the fire from what I can tell. Talk about an all time screwed the pooch.
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Old 06-14-2016, 06:51 AM   #4
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STOP IT NOW !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So jealous

We have an RV trip planned for the end of July, first of August to the durango and Colo Springs areas and you guys are killing me with anticipation !!!

Will be towing the Jeep and taking a day for a Jeep trail ride somewhere.
But don't want to do it alone since we don't know the area and don't want to get stranded for 'an extended vacation' like that lil white truck

Any suggestions for group rides ? thanks in advance !
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Old 06-14-2016, 12:51 PM   #5
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I sold my project jeep and it as never trail ready so cannot comment on "jeep trails". Outside of some of the Ouray places that are known, how "jeep trail" are you looking for? Or just some offroad driving to get into back areas? You could check some of the jeep forums and see if there are any locals that do a weekend trip. I saw 6 out driving on Saturday, no clue where they were going, but people get together all the time.

I will be going again this weekend for scouting new places, I will keep you in mind as I look at roads and take more pics.
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Old 06-14-2016, 01:22 PM   #6
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Our jeep is a day to day driver and a toad that is basically stock except for tires and wheels...

So nothing that would break it since we would like to tow it back

Thanks - Pics are always welcome !

Here's where we went in NC - the wife was so funny


and
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Old 06-14-2016, 02:05 PM   #7
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hahahaha, I am sure I can find you some "test your limits" roads that will be no issue.
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Old 06-14-2016, 02:11 PM   #8
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Obviously come along and the Jack and Coke is on us
(may wait until we get back to the RV park just so we can re-find the park!)

Durango Riverside Resort & RV Park - 1-800-351-2819
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Old 06-14-2016, 07:37 PM   #9
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Where in NO Colorado do you look / go? Being in COS I am trying to head south to avoid the Denver crowd (or at least the majority of them).

I plan on going this week or weekend to do some more research in the 11 Mile Canyon area.

Just looked online to see if any actual reservable spots were available in Central CO area. I could find nothing. Sort of dictates one is able to make all your reservations at the beginning of the season or you commit to disbursed options in the forest.

You remember correct on the fire from what I can tell. Talk about an all time screwed the pooch.
We are going to Gould to hit Teller city ghost town leaving Thursday until Sunday. Great trail system there big enough for all rigs depending where you go. We also will be going into Albany Wyoming to mess around what's called Cinnabar Park next month hopefully. RedfeatherLakes is another top spot for us.
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Old 06-20-2016, 01:20 PM   #10
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Went out again this past weekend. Lots of places I could go with the old off road that would be amazing, new one, so much more limited, but what are you going to do....

I ended up doing 400 miles in a day and a half, checked 3 dozen or so forest roads spread across 8 counties. Used 3 maps and checked 4 different forests.

In Pikes Peak forest, looking out into the valley. Unfortunately, rough it too rough to get up there.


They do use this area for open grazing.


Valley in the forest above Buena Vista, hoping to came near here this weekend and check again to see if I can access the top where there is NO ONE.


Camping on both sides of this Valley, plus the valley at the end to goes off to the right side. Gonna try here in several weeks.



Still going to search while we are out camping. Need access to water we can jump in, temps are pushing 90s during the day. It also has to do with the area I have been searching, not as much shade trees or water. Other areas have more (life in a desert state).
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Old 06-20-2016, 01:22 PM   #11
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Oh, and stumbled across this place. Guess they felt they wanted their house to look like a castle.

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Old 06-20-2016, 02:58 PM   #12
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Great shots !

Just talked to the Rv Park in Durango and he says we could go to a jeep trail a day for a month and not see it all

thanks for the pics - All are prettier than TexUS and 90's is a cold front for us this week !!!
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Old 06-20-2016, 03:58 PM   #13
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Great shots !

Just talked to the Rv Park in Durango and he says we could go to a jeep trail a day for a month and not see it all

thanks for the pics - All are prettier than TexUS and 90's is a cold front for us this week !!!
I love living out here. 8 years and still marvel at the beauty.

This year will be Central CO camping. Next year, hope to get some time farther south into San Juan and Rio Grande National Forest and Rocky Mountain NP. Partly due to once kids are older, they should tolerate longer drives. Also saving up some PTO for a couple week events. Hopefully next year we can commit to several longer 4-7 day trips. I NEED to visit Yellowstone.
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Old 06-20-2016, 05:48 PM   #14
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invitation stands...
should be in durango 7/30 thru 8/2, head to Colorado Springs 8/3 thru 8/6 !
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Old 06-20-2016, 07:35 PM   #15
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johnboy, that reminds me

County Road 59, Forest Road 270. Both are off road in the National Forest. They are near 39 Mile Mtn, and have good views of the area. Thats where the 1st, 2nd, 3rd pics are from. Takes about 2 hours to drive the area. I did it in my 3500, only had to use 4x4 a couple times. Ill check my maps and see if there are any others that jump out.

You can call the different Forest Ranger offices and request the Forest Trail maps. They will send them for free and they list all the Forest Roads, much more detailed than my Colorado Atlas.
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Old 06-21-2016, 11:50 AM   #16
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I'm not brave enough for the dispersed camping.

If you're looking for a bit longer of a trip to a campground, try Steinaker State Park in Vernal Utah. Mid week there were plenty of open/unreserved spaces. about a half dozen full hookup sites. Friday fills up fast for the weekend due to the boating on the reservoir. We were going for a week, so we reserved a full hookup months in advance. There's OHV trails in the park, swimming, boating, hiking all nearby. Also close to Dinosaur National Monument and Flaming Gorge Dam and National Recreation area. We loved our week out there.

Took us 7.5 hours from the springs to get there, 9 to get home due to Saturday afternoon mountain traffic followed by Ren fest traffic on 25.
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Old 06-21-2016, 01:54 PM   #17
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johnboytoo, while in Durango off Hwy 550 north, is Missionary Ridge. Descent road for jeep driving. About 8-10 miles up, the road splits, either way is a nice drive, with trailheads at the end to hike around on.
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Old 06-21-2016, 01:56 PM   #18
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abbazabba, might look in the area by Gardner, Mosca Pass area, there are some descent areas there.
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Old 06-21-2016, 02:16 PM   #19
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johnboytoo, while in Durango off Hwy 550 north, is Missionary Ridge. Descent road for jeep driving. About 8-10 miles up, the road splits, either way is a nice drive, with trailheads at the end to hike around on.
Thanks ! will look on google maps to see if I can locate it

Have been wanting to update the jeep a bit more, and this trip gives me a reason a small lift, tires, disconnects, and winch just for this trip !
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Old 06-21-2016, 02:28 PM   #20
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johnboytoo, take Hwy 550 north out of Durango, you'll go past a soaring/glider port on the right side, then a bit further an RV park on the left side, then come to a stop light. At the stop light you'll turn right, go up thru and around a golf course, come to a stop sign, turn left, then proceed a few miles and road splits, take the right and head on up. Most is paved but after taking the right, soon the pavement ends and becomes a dirt road. Well travels. From there then about 8-10 miles up is where the road spilts.
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