The Colorado Culinary Camping Guide
We're fools for camping in this corner of the universe, and nothing elevates a night under the stars like a bonfire feast. Consider staying at one of our favorite campgrounds, which are easily linked with suggestions for where to get Colorado-made goods to create delectable meals.
Crow Valley Recreation Area, Briggsdale
Crow Valley's black skies, cradled by Pawnee National Grassland's sun-kissed prairie, thrill Milky Way chasers and solitude seekers. From the neighboring Pawnee Pioneer Trails scenic and historic byway, take in Insta-worthy views of the Pawnee Buttes, which are twin castle-like mesas that rise above the plains.
Stop at Pringle's Fine Wine & Spirits in Fort Collins to stock up on cans of Denver-based The Infinite Monkey Theorem wine, then head to Beavers' Super Market to pick up some house-made garlic brats to sear over the campfire.
Crow Valley Recreation AreaCrow Valley Campground Group Sites, Briggsdale, CO 80611, USA
Pearl Lake State Park, Clark
The calm waters of Pearl Lake entice visitors to answer the call of the wild, and practically every one of the park's 36 campsites offers spectacular views of the lake and neighboring peaks. Kayaking, Gold Medal trout fishing, and frolicking in the surrounding forest via off-the-beaten-path routes are among the activities available.
Supply Stop: Steamboat Springs' The Homesteader, known for its selection of locally produced goods, is a great place to pick up cured meats, cheeses, and painstakingly created chocolate bark (for extra-special s'mores).
Pearl Lake State Park61105 Rcr 129, Clark, CO 80428, USA
Ute Campground, near Pagosa Springs
This 26-site area at Chimney Rock National Monument offers views of the monument's ancient ruins, which include more than 200 dwellings and structures built by ancestors of the present Pueblo Indians that appear to be frozen in time. Take a guided walking tour of the monument and find a spot shaded by soaring pines.
Picks from Pagosa Springs' gourmet food business The Choke Cherry Tree will dazzle your brood. Delicious handcrafted fruit syrups, such as the eponymous wild chokecherry or boysenberry, are created on site and are a great addition to campfire pancakes in the morning, while Grandpa Bill's Caramels are a great evening treat.
Ute CampgroundSan Juan National Forest, US-160, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147, USA
Mosca Campground, Hooper
San Luis State Park and Wildlife Area's 51-site campground is tucked in the shadow of the always-beautiful Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, making it an ideal base for spotting shorebirds, songbirds, and raptors, as well as hiking or biking through the lower sand dunes while the Sangre de Cristo Mountains tower above.
At Alamosa's family-run Valley Meat Market, pick up snacks like delectable deli meats and cheeses, or enjoy fresh cuts of beef for a campfire barbeque.
Mosca CampgroundHooper, CO 81136, USA
Island Lake Campground, near Delta & Cedaredge
The world's largest flat-topped mountain, Colorado's Grand Mesa, is the holy grail of outdoor playgrounds. At 10,000 feet, Island Lake Campground's 39 sites provide prime access to Grand Mesa's 300 fishing lakes (for real! ), 3,000 miles of trails, and wildflower-strewn meadows.
Supply Stop: Homestead Natural Meats in Delta has everything you need to make a prized cheeseburger supper, including patties prepared from their own perfectly bred beef and a selection of Rocking W Cheese, an Olathe export.