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Old 08-20-2018, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Na'alehu Hawaii/Buena Vista Colorado
4,624 posts, read 9,112,537 times
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A site will either be reservable, which means that someone reserves the site for certain days, or first-come-first-serve. Reserved campsites will be located within a campground, and there will be signs indicating which sites are reserved and for which nights. Even if the site is empty, you can’t use it.

Then there are first-come, first-serve sites. These could be located within a campground (and will be identified as such) or they can be dispersed. You get there, it’s empty, you use it.

I suggest that you read up on camping etiquette. Maybe there are websites for camping beginners to get started. Don’t forget to check fire bans if you plan to have a campfire. BTW, it’s starting to get pretty chilly up here in the mountains at night. I hope you have some good gear.
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Old 08-20-2018, 03:35 PM
 
680 posts, read 407,078 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluescreen73 View Post
If it's first-come, first-served it's not reserved. It's walk-up.

ah thanks!! didnt know. I was confused because on the website there is an option to reserve which I thought was odd since the other site said first come first serve.
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Old 08-20-2018, 05:34 PM
 
Location: Gilbert, AZ
3,003 posts, read 1,696,518 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willc86 View Post
ah thanks!! didnt know. I was confused because on the website there is an option to reserve which I thought was odd since the other site said first come first serve.

Yes, it can be confusing. Some campgrounds take reservations during the busy season, but are first-come-first-served (FCFS) in other parts of the year. Also, I believe some are a combination, with a certain number of reserved sites (possibly just the large-group sites) and the remainder being FCFS.


Sometimes it takes a call to get clarity.
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Old 08-21-2018, 09:08 AM
 
4,067 posts, read 2,057,503 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willc86 View Post
question so I am eyeing this one, which is chalk lake campground.

https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/psic...12645&actid=29

i noticed on the site it says first come first serve. So, I can set up tent on any of those pads right, even if reserved since I got there first? I think thats the part thats confusing. I just want to get there find an empty pad and claim it for a night or 2
NO. If it is reserved you cannot take it. That is why it is reserved!
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Old 08-21-2018, 09:53 AM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,953,040 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willc86 View Post
question so I am eyeing this one, which is chalk lake campground.

https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/psic...12645&actid=29

i noticed on the site it says first come first serve. So, I can set up tent on any of those pads right, even if reserved since I got there first? I think thats the part thats confusing. I just want to get there find an empty pad and claim it for a night or 2
It's unlikely that you will find an empty campsite at Chalk Lake at the height of the summer season. According to the website:

Camping and campfires are restricted in the Chalk Creek Canyon to developed campgrounds only. Campers who are unable to find a campsite in one of the four developed campground may camp above the townsite of St. Elmo on County Road 267 or near the Hancock townsite located 5 miles south on Forest Road 295. Additional camping is available in the Browns Creek area south of County Road 162 at the junction of County roads 270 and 272.

I used to camp at Browns Creek back in the day and it used to be a pleasant camping spot. However, I haven't been out that way in quite some time, so I can't tell you what it's like now.

If you choose (or are forced) to take the option of camping on an undeveloped site, keep in mind that you will need to bring your own water. My rule of thumb is to carry 20 gallons of water per day per person. I am a desert rat by nature, so always having plenty of water is second nature to me - you might be able to get by with less.

Depending on fire conditions, you may not be allowed to build a campfire, so be sure that you have a Coleman stove or the like with plenty of propane. I also never leave home without my trusty Coleman lantern. It's invaluable when camping on an undeveloped site where the only sources of light are the moon and the stars.

What kind of vehicle do you have? Keep in mind that if you pull off a Forest Service Road to camp on an undeveloped site, you may find yourself spinning your wheels in the event of a good rain shower.

Finally, get yourself a good map - at the very least one of the San Isabel/Pike National Forest which you should be able to buy at the FS Visitor Center. Keep in mind that the GPS which comes with your car may not work so well out in the boonies as it does back in the city. Always ask at the Visitor Center first about directions and road conditions.

Happy camping!
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