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Camping: Best locations in Colorado

By: The Gazette
May 11, 2016 Updated: May 15, 2016 at 10:05 am
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Hikers hike the trail to the Crags from the Crags Campground Sept. 4, 2012. (The Gazette, Christian Murdock)

So many surprises await at campsites throughout Colorado.

- The Crags - A true gem in our own backyard, this spot makes it possible to get away without going very far at all. While the campground near Divide offers several quality sites with a bathroom and water nearby, there are also outstanding free options along the road to the campground. tinyurl.com/c5g2bkt

- Golden Gate Canyon Park - Need to stay close to the Front Range but don't want to stay at home? No problem. This state park is only 30 miles from Denver, but you'd never know it. Two campgrounds combine to offer 132 sites. There are also 20 backcountry tent sites. cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/GoldenGateCanyon

- Halfmoon - Mountain views? Check. Rocky Mountain stream? Check. Nearby trails? Check. Decent price? Check. This is Colorado camping at its best, if you don't mind roughing it. At nearly 10,000 feet, the nights can get a little frosty, but a campfire and roasted marshmallows quickly take the chill away. 1.usa.gov/1uXhdtm

- Camp Dick/Peaceful Valley - Rocky Mountain National Park is a zoo during the summer - and for good reason. But great camping can be found outside of the park if you know where to look. This campground combo offers nearly 60 sites in a beautiful locale east of Estes Park. tinyurl.com/cbca5qe, tinyurl.com/hg75pq5

- Trappers Lake - Lying within Flat Tops Wilderness, this area is known as the "Cradle of Wilderness" and inspired the foundation of the wilderness preservation movement in America. While geographically close to Glenwood Springs, there is no easy way to get here, which likely adds to its charm. 1.usa.gov/SVF5zc

- Little Molas Lake - If you were asked to create a postcard showcasing camping in the state, this would be a perfect place to start. Named the "Most Scenic Campground in Colorado" by AAA, the 137 beautiful acres are accessed via the Million Dollar Highway. Need more persuading? Hot showers. molaslake.com

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