Camping options limited in Routt County for Memorial Day | SteamboatToday.com

Camping options limited in Routt County for Memorial Day

Scott Franz

Sunset creates dramatic skies above a campsite in North Routt County along the Elk River. Many campsites in the area remain closed due to conditions.

Camping in Routt County this Memorial Day weekend will likely be a little more adventurous than usual.

That is if you can even find a space.

The weather forecast is calling for chances of rain, and maybe even snow, on Friday and Saturday nights. The forecast clears up Sunday, when it is expected to be mostly sunny with a high of 61 degrees.

And recent snowstorms have prevented the U.S. Forest Service from opening some gates that lead to prime camping spots.

All four state parks in the area are reporting their campgrounds are already fully booked for the weekend.

Camping options remain limited in the National Forest, especially if you head north.

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The only National Forest campground that will be open in North Routt County  this weekend will be the Hinman Campground off of Seedhouse Road.

The Seedhouse gate is still closed, however, meaning several dispersed campsites along the Elk River in the Hinman Park area are not yet accessible.

"It was kind of tracking for campgrounds to be open a touch earlier than normal this year until the snowstorm we just got," Forest Service spokesman Aaron Voos said Wednesday.

Voos did not expect the Seedhouse gate to open by the weekend due to the upcoming weather forecast.

Head south though, and there are some more camping options in the Yampa district.

Bear Lake Campground is open up until site no. 24.

Camping is also available at the Lynx and Blacktail Creek campgrounds.

Voos said the day use areas at Sheriff's and Chapman Reservoirs are still closed.

Hikers also cannot yet make it to the Devil's Causeway.

The Sarvis Creek and Silver Creek wilderness areas are accessible. But Voos cautioned hikers to keep an eye out for falling trees.

To the east in the Park district, the Aspen Pines and Teal campgrounds are open but water will not be provided yet on site.

Crews are working hard to get the Big Creek Lakes campground open, but Voos said culvert work is not going to be done in time for that area to be open by the weekend.

Campers might have luck finding more spaces if they head further south from Routt County into the White River National Forest.

Vail Daily reported this week that most of the White River National Forest campgrounds opened May 19 with the exception of some higher elevation campgrounds and sites in Summit County that were still seeing spring snowfall.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10