Libbys on the Loose:2 Humans. 2 Great Danes. 1 RV.: Royal Gorge Park Campground Review - Cañon City, Colorado

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Royal Gorge Park Campground Review - Cañon City, Colorado

Royal Gorge Park Campground
3315 Co Rd F30
Cañon City, CO 81212
(719) 269-9028
Fees:  Free up to 72 hours

Wow!  What a great find this spot was!  First off, this isn't a full hookup campground.  In fact, this is a no hookup campground.  Literally not much more than a glorified boondooking spot.  It's a little bit off the beaten path, but totally worth it for the location and the views it presents.  This park does have a 72 hour maximum but due to the off-season time we arrived, we planned on staying at least a week (We got permission for this from the rangers).  We did end up having to cut our stay a few days shorter than we expected (darn wildfires threatening!), we thoroughly enjoyed this spot!

Notes:  Be VERY careful as there is a crest of a hill as you approach the campground that if you have a rig with low ground clearance, you may either drag or seriously damage your equipment!  At the crest of the hill, take a left instead.

Not a bad spot for a few nights!  Quiet and overlooking Cañon City.
There are no hookups at this campground - it's completely dry camping but there are some pit toilets so you don't have to worry about filling your black tank.  With a short stay of the normal 72 hours, you shouldn't have that problem anyway!  There is hiking around the area as well as the Royal Gorge Bridge just down from the campground as well as the Royal Gorge Route train tour (we highly recommend this one!)

The Royal Gorge Bridge has an interesting story.  In the early 20th century, two very rich men (from Texas) one being an architect and the other an oil tycoon, made a bet that a bridge could not be built across the Royal Gorge.  The oil tycoon bet the architect that it couldn't be done.  After a short period of construction with no injuries, the Royal Gorge Bridge was built at a cost of $350,000.  The architect collected his winnings, as the story goes, of $1.  Royal Gorge is also known as the bridge to nowhere as there no destinations that it connects!  This is definitely worth a visit. 

Royal Gorge Bridge from below

The Royal Gorge Route railroad is a few minutes down the road from the campground.  The railroad runs the length of most of the canyon alongside the river offering dramatic views upward, especially under the bridge!  Get the least expensive seats.  Once the train starts moving, people get up and move everywhere.  Plus, there are a number of open viewing cars for taking pics, etc.  

For the location and the price, this campground really can't be beat.  It was so great, in fact, that it made the list of our top three campgrounds so far!  Neither of us were really sure just how many campgrounds we've been to (including boondocking spots), but it's well over 100 now in just over a year and a half.  If you get through this area, or are anywhere nearby, at least check out the Royal Gorge Bridge and/or the Royal Gorge Route.  Either was was completely worth seeing!

Enjoying the scenery!

Bridge on approach

Caretaker's residence

From the viewing car
Kids out for a run

Old wooden waterline alongside the river

Another really cool thing to do (not for the faint-of-heart) is the Skyline Drive.  Located just outside Cañon City, Skyline Drive is a narrow, one way road that snakes its way across the top of the ridge.   Some amazing long scenic views can be had from one many of the stopping points along the 7.6 mile loop.  But beware, they are small - especially if you're drive a one ton dually pickup truck!

Along the way, there a number of pull-offs with lots of history, etc.  Be wary though again, especially if you are driving a large vehicle.  Let's just say that one step too close to the edge might be your last!

Fossilized Dinosaur Footprint

View from the driver's seat - a bit precarious!

Take a ride along the Skyline with us!

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