Backcountry camping at Golden Gate Canyon State Park moving to reservations only

Photo by Jason Clay/CPW

GOLDEN, Colo. – Starting July 15, backcountry camping sites at Golden Gate Canyon State Park will require a reservation.

Reservations can be made by calling 1-800-244-5613 or online at www.cpwshop.com. The backcountry campsite fee is $18.  A vehicle pass is also required in addition to the camping fee.

The park offers four backcountry shelters and 20 backcountry tent sites that in the past were on a first-come, first-served basis year-round. These are backpacking, hike-in only campsites, there is no vehicle access. Average hiking distance is 1.5-2 miles one way. Backcountry camping provides a more primitive and somewhat unique camping experience, but with that comes responsibilities the user must assume to take care of the land.

After experiencing issues of misuse such as people not paying park fees, going to the wrong sites, leaving waste behind and igniting illegal fires at the backcountry sites, the decision was made to implement reservations. Part of that decision is to also help promote Leave No Trace principles, as Golden Gate Canyon is in the process of working with the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics foundation to achieve Gold Standard Site designation.

The four backcountry shelters are three-sided structures, which are built in the Appalachian trail-hut tradition, have roofs and wood floors. Each hut can sleep up to six people without a tent.

The 20 backcountry tent sites are open year-round. Many of these sites are located in large, scenic meadows and are surrounded by 10,000-foot peaks. Each site is limited to a maximum of six people and are also equipped with bear boxes. 

ALL FIRES ARE PROHIBITED IN THE BACKCOUNTRY

Please adhere to the following Leave No Trace Principles:

1 – Know before you go

2 – Stick to trails and camp overnight right

3 – Pack out your trash, properly dispose of it and pick up all dog waste

4 – Leave it as you find it

5 – Be careful with stoves – no fires allowed

6 – Keep wildlife wild – use bear boxes

7 – Share our trails and manage your pet

Photos below courtesy of Dustin Doskocil.

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