Whether you have friends or kin driving their RV or camper when they come visit, or you want to introduce children to the joy and adventure of sleeping in a tent, area campgrounds near Denver fit the bill. Cooking outdoors and eating at a picnic table makes campers feel miles away from the bright lights of the city. Check the website or phone for details on admission to public lands as well as camping fees – and also about open bans that are periodically imposed.
Chatfield State Park
This 5,378 acre park just off C-470 centers around Chatfield Reservoir on the South Platte River. Known especially for water sports and birding, it also features campground with nearly 200 sites, accommodating individual vehicles and tents and also groups (bring the scouts!). All sites are within walking distance of the water – a good thing, since very few are naturally shaded. The sites are all surrounded by native vegetation and outfitted with electrical hookups, and some also have sewer hookups. The campground has a showers, restrooms, laundry, playground, volleyball court, horseshoes and, important for those with camping vehicles, a dump station.
Dakota Ridge RV Resort
17800 W. Colfax Ave.
Golden, CO 80401
Rigs up to 45 feet in length can pull into this 144-site facility that is open year-round and offers views of Denver to the east and the mountains to the west. Sites are level and paved. Amenities include full hook-ups, restrooms, showers, laundry facilities, playground and a clubhouse with a fireplace, exercise room, pool table, games and lending library. Its proximity to Red Rocks Amphitheatre, atmospheric Golden and Denver’s considerable attractions is unsurpassed.
Denver West Central City KOA
605 Lake Gulch Rd.
Central City, CO 80427-0771
The Kampgrounds of America (KOA) affiliation carries a lot of weight with RV enthusiasts. There are certain standards a KOA campground must achieve in terms of amenities, operator friendliness and knowledge. The Central City KOA is considered “big rig-friendly” but also accommodates tent campers. RV sites feature 50-amp full hookups, cable TV and Wi-Fi, and other campground’s amenities include a clubhouse, hot tubs, mini-mart, souvenir shop, laundry and showers. The casinos of Black Hawk and Central City, along with the historic Central City Opera, are nearby. The campground is open seasonally from mid-April through early October. At the beginning and end of the season, it customarily institutes a buy two nights- get a third night free policy.
Prospect RV Park
11600 W. 44th Ave.
Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
Located just off Interstate 70, Prospect is close to Denver, Black Hawk, Central City and the mountains. Open year-round, this full-service RV park has 70 sites. Forty-seven are full hook-up sites, 26 of those are pull-throughs, and 23 with water and 30 amp electricity. Visitors also find a full-service laundry, pay telephones (how quaint!), broadband Wi-Fi, private bathroom and shower facilities, and dump station free of charge for guests. The campground is for dial-up modems. Recreational trails are nearby, and there’s a pet walk that leads to 250 acres of open space and a habitat garden.
— Mile High Cheapskates Claire Walter & Laura Daily keep Denver/Boulder residents informed about the latest deals, discounts and freebies at MileHighOnTheCheap.com