Colorado Springs

Memorial weekend: unofficial start to camping season

What you need to know for camping season

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer, which means campgrounds across Colorado will be filled to the brim. 

For those last-minute planners, finding a full-service campsite or a reserved spot will be virtually impossible.

John Kelleher fought traffic for an hour and a half to get to Mueller State Park.

"It's so amazing to be here," Kelleher said. "You're getting out of the car, you're getting out of traffic, you're getting out of the neighborhood,"

Kelleher planned this trip with his family six months ago.

"Planning in advance is critical because it's so packed up here, it's just absolutely to capacity," he said.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife report both the individual and group campgrounds are 95 percent booked until October.

"We do fill up completely," said Linda Groat with Colorado Parks and Wildlife. "At the moment, we only have a few openings."

If you're lucky enough to get one of these spots, keep fire danger in mind.

"Teller County does have a fire ban, but it's not to the highest level," said Groat. 

Campers at Mueller are allowed to have campfires under certain restrictions.

If you are set on camping this weekend, there are other ways of scoring a campsite. Some campsites at developed campgrounds on Forest Service land are not available to be reserved. But they're on a first-come, first-served basis. 

There also is backcountry camping, but be prepared to spend the weekend in the full outdoors without any services.

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