NFS Campground Review – West Fork, San Juan Forest, Pagosa Springs, CO
A simply lovely forest campground in the Forest valley just north of Pagosa Springs in South Central Colorado.
- Site Quality = 4/5
Nice sites for a forest campground. All are primitive (no hookups) spacious, decently flat compact dirt with picnic table and fire-pit surrounded by deep pine forest. Great site separation and privacy with nice “sitting area” and good access. Most sites have good to medium shade. Several sites have river access only 20 feet or so away (sites #16,#18) and many are large enough for bigger rigs (esp. #2, 17, 21, 26)
- Facilities = 2/5
Typical primitive forest facilities. There are several pit toilets, all kept very nicely clean. Water spigots on-site but no dump station.
- Location = 5/5
Just a lovely location. You are deep in a forest valley with lots of seclusion, yet only steps away from the San Juan River and stunning mountain views. Lots of nearby hiking plus all the shopping and eating you’d like ~14 miles away in Pagosa Springs.
- Pet Friendliness = 5/5
Another great doggie spot. You’re right next to the San Juan River which has lots of opportunities for hiking and splashing around (there’s a “hidden” trail directly behind the pit toilet next to site #18 which continues down to a cute water area (to the right) or back, across the road and up the hill on the other side (to the left)).
Overall Rating = 4
BONUS ALERT = Camp deep in the forest next to river and mountain views!
Summary: This was simply a lovely find. If you’re looking for a primitive, secluded and quiet forest campground with access to river and just steps away from nature, hiking and stunning mountain views then this is your spot. There are several other forest service campgrounds in this area (e.g. East Fork, Lower Piedra, Ute etc.), but West Fork seems to have the best access and largest sites. Located beautifully in the rugged valley just ~14 miles north of Pagosa Springs, the campground has nice, spacious sites (several large enough for bigger rigs) with great separation and picnic table/fire-pit. A few sites have river access very close by (esp. #16, 18). The only ding I could think of is it does take a bit to get here. It’s ~1.5 miles on a firm (and decently wide), but very dusty road from Hwy 160. Within the campground the road has good access with a few turns, but nothing that concerned us. Overall an outstanding spot to hang around in nature and explore Pagosa Springs, Wolf Creek Pass and the surrounding attractions. We would most certainly come again.
Extra Info: Very spotty cellphone reception here, but we were able to get a good internet connection with our external amp/antenna on Verizon. Sites cost $16/night (no hookups). 28 sites of which 15 are reservable. NO dump station.SPONSORED LINK:
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