Colorado's warmer months bring ideal conditions for venturing out among the state's majestic mountains and wildlife. Spending a night under the stars can be just the cure for city doldrums, and the state's numerous campgrounds are great places to start. Nestled along the edge of McPhee Reservoir -- Colorado's second-largest reservoir -- McPhee Campground (no website; 29211 Highway 184; Dolores; 970-882-7296) is home to 50 miles of shoreline, scenic views and outdoor adventures.
McPhee Campground is home to 76 individual campsites and two group camping sites. Features include paved roads, picnic tables, flush toilets, showers, a dumping station, grills, fire pits, firewood and drinking water. Camp hosts are available on the premises. Sixteen of the sites offer electric hookups for a fee, but there is no RV parking. Two sites are handicapped-accessible, with tables and toilets to accommodate wheelchairs.
Wildlife and scenery enthusiasts may want to visit the Ridge Point Overlook located near the campground via the Can Do Trail. The overlook provides panoramic views of nearby natural landmarks. Mountain bikers can enjoy the Mcphee/House Creek bike route, which winds along both gravel and paved roads and provides views of the House Creek drainage.
Boating and Fishing
McPhee Reservoir is also a fisherman's paradise. Its waters are stocked with a variety of fish, including largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, rainbow trout, bluegill and catfish. Boaters and fishermen may use the campground's six-lane, concrete boat ramp, docks and fish-cleaning station. Flush toilets and drinking water are also available near the boat launch. An on-site marina sells meals, snacks, bait and tackle through August. Dry boat storage is also available.
Things to Consider
The campground is situated 500 feet above the reservoir and contains no lakefront sites. Though some shade is available within the tree line, sites may be quite warm in summer months. During the dry season, local fire regulations may prohibit campers from building campfires on site. Check with the camp office or camp host for up-to-date information concerning fire alerts. In the peak summer season and on weekends, campsites can fill up quickly, so plan in advance and make reservations if necessary. Reservations are accepted for the Pinyon Loop campsites only; all others are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
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