List of campgrounds at Colorado state parks and expected opening dates
State park campgrounds are beginning to reopen after getting the go-ahead from Gov. Jared Polis.
More than a dozen state parks including Mueller State Park in Teller County reopened on Tuesday with more to follow this week. The governor has said the resumption of camping at these parks is up to the host county.
"Camping can resume in our world-class state park system, unless of course the host county doesn’t want it. We respect that. There’s some host counties that have state parks that aren’t yet ready to open those," Polis said in a news conference Monday.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife says most of the parks are reopening their campgrounds this week, but cautions would-be campers not to pack their tents just yet.
"As much as we would like to, we can't just throw our gates open and let people start camping," CPW spokesperson Bill Vogrin told 11 News.
Vogrin says Parks and Wildlife needs some time to prepare. This includes being fair to people who had reservations that were canceled. Before offering slots to the general public, CPW is planning to call everyone with a reservation before May 18 to give them first dibs on campsites.
Once all of those people are contacted, everyone else can go onto the
and reserve a campground. All state park campgrounds are open by reservation only, something that Colorado began requiring at the start of the year, before the pandemic.
Campers will find new guidelines at the state parks. Campsites will be held to a maximum of 10 people, and campers will be asked to stay with their groups and not mingle with others. Masks should be worn if away from your campsite. If a county has a stricter public health order than the state, then those restrictions must be respected.
The park manager for Cheyenne Mountain State Park in El Paso County tells 11 News rangers will be on patrol to encourage these guidelines. No fines will be issued for now.
At Cheyenne Mountain State Park, the visitor center, showers and playground remain closed.
The governor has said he feels camping itself is a safe, social-distancing activity; it's the road trip that concerns him.
"In old times, you often would stop in local restaurants and pick up supplies and even refuel," Polis said.
He and wildlife officials both agree that can't happen now.
"Plan as if you are going to the moon. In other words, plan ahead. Fill up your gas tank in your neighborhood to avoid stopping both to and from your destination. Plan your meals ahead of time, utilizing grocery stores near your home," CPW said on their website.
And whether in the midst of a pandemic or not,
More camping best practices and additional details on how Colorado Parks and Wildlife is responding to COVID-19 can be found by
CPW has been updating its website throughout the pandemic.
Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (Fremont County campgrounds only)
Chatfield State Park
Cherry Creek State Park
Eleven Mile State Park
Elkhead Reservoir State Park
Highline State Park
Jackson Lake State Park
James M. Robb Colorado River State Park Island Acres
James M. Robb Colorado River State Park Fruita
Mancos State Park
Mueller State Park
North Sterling State Park
Rifle Falls State Park
Rifle Gap State Park
Staunton State Park
Vega State Park
Cheyenne Mountain State Park*
Crawford State Park
Boyd Lake State Park
St. Vrain State Park
John Martin Reservoir State Park
Golden Gate Canyon State Park*
Lake Pueblo State Park
Lory State Park
Navajo State Park
Ridgway State Park
Lathrop State Park
Paonia State Park
Pearl Lake State Park
Stagecoach State Park
State Forest State Park
Steamboat Lake State Park
Sylvan Lake State Park
Trinidad Lake State Park
Yampa River State Park
Watch the governor's press conference on Monday below: