Lodgepole Campground is a furrific accommodation choice for a Fido-friendly outdoor getaway in Colorado’s scenic Taylor River Valley. Like most US Forest Service campgrounds in this part of the Centennial State, facilities at Lodgepole are rather rustic. Don’t expect any showers, electricity, or RV hookups.
If you and your buddy are willing to sacrifice some of your creature comforts, though, you might end up thinking that Lodgepole’s location is worth "ruffing" it! As you might expect from the name, the campsite is well shaded by a cluster of lodgepole pines. The river runs right by the campground, and you can enjoy the sound of slow-moving water as you drift to sleep at night. The Forest Service has designated Lodgepole as a heavy usage campground, so it’s best to make your reservation early. There’s no entrance fee to the area, and sites start at $18. Don’t think about sneaking an extra tent on to your site, though -- you’ll be charged a full extra fee for your trouble.
You’ll find plenty of op-paw-tunities for adventure just a bone’s throw away from camp! The Fossil Ridge Wilderness is just a mile away, and can be reached from several trailheads at Lodgepole itself. This unique preserve is definitely a mutts-visit! Like many Colorado wilderness areas, Fossil Ridge possesses striking alpine peaks, crystal clear lakes, forested hills, and wildflowers, but look closer at those limestone cliffs and you’ll see the remains of all sorts of tiny prehistoric critters preserved in the landscape.
Not only that, but you’ll find a trail here for each and every level of athleticism, from the fittest furry friend to the most committed couch pup-tato! Keen anglers might like to cast their lines in Taylor River itself. The calm stretch of stream beside the campground might look inviting, but swimming isn’t recommended due to undercurrents. If your non-furry family members are dead set on having a dip, consider taking the ten-mile drive to Taylor Reservoir instead.
Wifi isn’t available at Lodgepole, but most cellular networks should receive at least some coverage. Fires are permitted, but the Forest Service asks that you don’t move firewood -- it can introduce invasive insects to an area, and several campgrounds have closed entirely due to a spruce beetle epidemic. You’ll find drinking water available on-site. Remember to bring waste bags for your doggo, and have a pawesome time!