Marijuana Considerations While Camping in Colorado

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If you 21 years of age or older, you can legally possess THC (aka cannibas or marijuana) as defined by the Colorado Constitution. Yes, you can smoke it or enjoy many types of edible products and topicals during your visit. No, you don’t need to be a Colorado resident to possess cannabis. Yet the story doesn’t end there.

You see, although it’s legal, there are guidelines, policies, and details of the law you should consider. First off all, discretion is appreciated and is often required. The law doesn’t permit consumption “openly and publicly.”

CAMPING Before assuming anything, contact the campground’s office to learn of their policy. Some are very strict, while others treat it similar to smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol. If consumption is your desire, ask of their policy before you book your campsite (remember, some campgrounds impose a cancellation fee).

KEEP IT IN COLORADO If you’re buying to use in states where it’s illegal, well, using it or even possessing it is still illegal in those states.

If you’re planning to mail some home to yourself or a buddy, don’t. The Drug Enforcement Administration and the US Postal Service inspectors are keenly watching for such activity from within Colorado.

Bottom line: Use it or leave it in Colorado.

FEDERAL LAND Your right to possess marijuana ends at the property line of federal land, including national parks, forests, monuments, and even courthouses. Possession of marijuana on federal land is punishable by jail time and financial fine even on the first offense (second offenses are more stringent).

DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE The Colorado Department of Transportation provides this insight regarding driving while impaired. Bottom line: don’t drive while under the influence of anything, including marijuana.

Camp Colorado wishes you and your camping neighbors exceptional Colorado getaway memories.

his publication is supported by funding from the Colorado Tourism Office, a state agency. Turn to Colorado.com for a comprehensive list of festivals, events, historic areas, itineraries, and community insight.

Blend Winter Adventure With Valentine Romance While Camping in Colorado

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Whisk off for the holiday of love. Surround yourself with Colorado’s fresh air, and enjoy making some new memories with your valentine. Mix it up with some winter adventures to create a genuine Colorado getaway! Here are a few ideas to stir your imagination.

Ouray lives up to its nickname “The Switzerland of America.” Hot springs, sledding, back-country skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling, and don’t overlook the wall of ice for climbing … that’s to name a few of the winter activities you might embrace. Ouray RV Park & Cabins now offers meals at its Ouray Café. Their Facebook posts whet the appetite every time we seem.  If your RV is winterized, consider one of their vacation rental cabins. The scenery of snow covered canyon walls is breathtakingly gorgeous!

Glenwood Springs offers the world’s largest hot springs pool for relaxation, and nearby businesses cater to the continued relaxation generated by massages, facials, and body healing treatments. If you want a little adventure before you relax, snowshoeing and snowmobiling await you, as do cave tours and ice skating. Shopping and cuisine just might complete your Valentine Getaway. Conveniently located to all of this, you’ll find Glenwood Canyon Resort ready for your RV or vacation rental cabin.

Given the “banana belt” location of Buena Vista, you can enjoy year-round adventures, from hot springs to hiking, biking, snowmobiling, ice fishing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, fat biking, and even dog sledding. Snowy Peaks RV Park offers camping sites and even some rental options, if you book early. From there you can certainly enjoy the scenery of several 14ers (peaks above 14,000’).

You don’t need to venture into the mountains to find love in the air in Colorado. Loveland, known as the Sweetheart City, boasts love all year and makes a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. Its family-friendly Fire & Ice Festival is an event to consider. Many couples get married in the amphitheater, while others renew their vows. The post office processes an enormous number of love messages by postmarking vast amounts of valentine cards.  And those who love to camp have some choices:

Spacious, shady RV sites! (Loveland RV Resort ~ Loveland Colorado)

 

Loveland RV Resort is located between I-25 and downtown Loveland.

 

 

Riverview RV Park is located west of town.

 

 

Fireside Cabins & RV Park is located west of town.

 

 

How about a little wine to go with your Valentine’s Day? In Western Colorado, convenient to I-70, is Colorado’s wine country. Here you will find wineries from Palisade to Grand Junction. If wine isn’t your valentine’s preferred beverage, check out the breweries and distilleries. Rest assured there’s plenty of adventure to add to your getaway:  downhill skiing and snowboarding, ice fishing, ice skating, snowmobiling, snowboarding, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, tubing and fat biking. You’ll find these RV parks ready to accommodate you, both offering campsites and vacation rentals:

Palisade Basecamp RV Resort

 

Palisade Basecamp RV Resort

 

Junction West RV Park 

 

We hope you stayed with us for this next idea, last but definitely not least!

Plenty of room for Big Rigs at Westerly RV Park!

A few minutes north of Durango is where you’ll find Westerly RV Park, which is in walking distance (even in the winter) to Trimble Spa & Natural Hot Springs. In addition to the natural hot mineral soaking pools, they offer a variety of relaxing and therapeutic spa services. Winter adventures await you here, too:  skiing, ice climbing, snowmobiling, snowboarding, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, dog sledding, tubing, and more.

We hope these ideas stir your imagination and inspire you to make plans for a lovely getaway to commemorate Valentine’s Day.

Use our Campground Search page, click on February, and you’ll see many more Colorado campgrounds that might be able to accommodate you for a Valentine’s getaway.

This publication is supported by funding from the Colorado Tourism Office, a state agency. Turn to Colorado.com for a comprehensive list of festivals, events, historic areas, itineraries, and community insight.

Advantages to Off-Season Camping

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Whoa, whoa, whoa …. WAIT! Before you winterize that RV, look at some other options! While others are stowing their campers and gear, others are heading out for more camping adventures. The seasonal differences bring about tremendous experiential variations, such as:

  • Fewer campsite neighbors.
  • Shorter lines at restaurants and attractions.
  • Earlier sunsets.
  • Cooler temperatures.
  • Colorful nature displays.
  • Cozier campfires.
  • Longer hours to star gaze.

IMG_1233Go ahead! Take in the autumn festivals, the less crowded trails, and some snowy adventures like snowshoeing, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, and even downhill skiing.

Many campgrounds along I-70 and I-25 stay open for travelers but, yes, you can actually still go “destination camping” in the off-season, sometimes all year!

Find them by going to our campground search page and choosing which month you’re planning to go. The map will then show you the campgrounds that are open at least part of that month. From there, check on availability and fees by contacting each campground that looks appealing (if they have online reservations, the link is shown in the tab marked Websites, Social Media, Ratings & Reviews).

A few such destinations are:

This list is merely a sampling of opportunities. In Colorado, you can go camping each off-season weekend and not run out of new places to camp.

NOTICE:  Sometimes the RV sites are winterized, while other lodging options remain in full service so always check with the campground to make sure the accommodations you’re expecting are available.

Please also consider these tips in our earlier blog. They could make your cold-weather camping more enjoyable.

Go ahead! Head on over to our campground search page and start making your autumn and winter camping plans!

Happy Camping!

Uncompahgre River RV Park, in Olathe CO, offers long RV sites. For those without RVs, consider tent camping or renting one of their cabins.

Uncompahgre River RV Park (Olathe CO)

 

Westerly RV Park is open all year (Durango Colorado).

Westerly RV Park (Durango Colorado).

 

Ice skating (photo courtesy South Fork Visitor Center)

Ice skating (photo courtesy South Fork Visitor Center)

 

Snowshoeing at State Forest

Snowshoeing at State Forest

Cold Weather Camping Tips

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Winter camping visitors at Base Camp at Golden Gate Canyon (Black Hawk CO)

Winter visitors at Base Camp at Golden Gate Canyon (Black Hawk CO)

Many Colorado campgrounds are open all year, such as Base Camp at Golden Gate Canyon (shown here). Whether you’re heading out for a wild winter adventure or are just wanting some peace and quiet, here are some safe ways to create nice winter camping memories.

Water:  RVers need to keep hydrants and the RV’s plumbing safe from the winter elements.

  • Use heat tape, coiled around the hydrant and hose.
  • Keep in mind that the heat tape that might be supplied by the campground on their hydrant and your heat tape on your hose should not touch the thermostats of the other.
  • Some then add foam insulation. Shorter hoses are usually easier to keep from freezing.
  • Outside water filters are challenging so consider faucet filters for your winter travels.
  • If you get up in the night, consider running your hot and cold faucets for a few seconds to prevent ice buildup.

Thinking of the old household practice of leaving your faucets dripping? That adds a lot to your holding tanks, and many campground water systems simply can’t handle the constant drips of numerous faucets throughout their campground. It is better to keep a supply of water on hand, and when you have finished your dishes and showers, turn off the water and disconnect the hose or drain the pressure off of it.

If your unit’s fresh water holding tank is within the insulated portion of your RV, it should stay well above freezing.

Propane:  Monitor the weather and your propane supply. Don’t get caught running out! It’s even best to not run low because some weather systems have been known to cause power outages, and propane dispensing stations usually require some electricity.

Waste Water:  Let’s not overlook the sewer system.

  • Since all things flow best going downhill, if your sewer line is going downhill, and has no low spots, it might be OK without heat tape.
  • Drain your tanks when it’s warmer out. The valves are usually kept in the closed position until you’re ready to drain the holding tanks, but they can become frozen in the closed position in extreme cold.
  • Heat tape could be helpful near the valves, if possible.
Winter camping can be fun.

Winter camping can be fun.

Keep Heat In:  Your own interior comfort might be enhanced if you cover your skylights and ceiling vents. Heat rises and it easily escapes through these thin areas. You can buy special products for this purpose, or use small tension rods or even duct tape to secure pillows into those areas.

Learn to quickly climb in and out of the rig, minimizing the exchange of cold and warm air.

Bubble wrap can also help insulate windows and doors. Just make sure you always have easy access to your emergency exits!

Don’t use propane or kerosene heaters in your RV! Electric heaters also come with risks, so know what maximum wattage can be handled by consulting both your RV’s manual and the campground’s owner.

Skirting the RV is also an option to consider. Check with the campground owner to learn their policies.

Other ideas for your comfort:

  • Dress appropriately, and in layers.
  • Keep your gloves handy.
  • Use flannel sheets.
  • Use a small fan to blow warm air to colder areas.
  • Keep windows covered, unless the sunlight is beaming in to provide additional warmth.
  • Use area or throw rugs.
  • Use the campground’s restroom and shower house more and your facilities less.

For your own safety, don’t overlook these:

  • Get fresh air into the RV when you can because you don’t want the buildup of carbon monoxide.
  • Maintain your batteries.
  • Moisture inside the RV can create its own problems so don’t boil water any longer than necessary and limit your showers.
  • Have your furnace inspected before the weather turns chilly. Remember that RVs aren’t necessarily built for constant living, so your furnace fan motor might not last very long.
  • Again, don’t use propane or kerosene heaters in your RV!

Camping is an all-year opportunity in Colorado, and Camp Colorado makes it easy for you to locate campgrounds that are open:   

Many Colorado campgrounds are open well into winter.

  1. Go to Find a Campground.
  2. Check the month that you’re planning to camp.
  3. Choose your choice of accommodations (RV vs rental cabin or even tent, if you’re really hearty).
  4. The map will then show you your options.
  5. Consider each listing, research, and contact one or several to learn about availability and fees.

Most parks have limited services from autumn through spring. Their office hours are usually shorter, their activities are often minimal at best, and they’re crowds are considerably smaller. Usually that’s exactly what the winter camper is seeking!

(Camp Colorado greatly appreciates the insight that was provided by Falcon Meadow RV Campground near Colorado Springs. Having served campers for three generations, they’ve experienced Colorado winters and have learned so much from many successes and a few failures of many of their year-round campers.)

 

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