The Dillon Ranger District is the best source for info on backpacking and rough camping regulations. The office is located at 680 Blue River Parkway in Silverthorne. We recommend a visit there before you set out.
Call 970-468-5400 for more info.
The District also has 15 spots for car/dispersed camping, as it were, with the closest ones in the Keystone area:
Deer Creek Road, Keystone Gulch Road, Peru Creek Road, Saints John Road and Webster Pass Road.
Before you head out to a dispersed or backpacking site, please review the rules and know of any fire bans: http://www.dillonrangerdistrict.com/discamregs.htm
If say you want a tad more civilization in the mix. Camp for the night in your tent, trailer or RV, then walk or bike the rec path into Dillon for a latte, Bloody Mary or skillet breakfast, and take your day from there.
First of all, camping reservations: 877-444-6777 (mention White River National Forest) or www.recreation.gov. In many cases, reservations are required.
There are 5 campgrounds near the Lake Dillon Reservoir in the Dillon Ranger District. Weather permitting, the campgrounds usually open Memorial Day weekend and close in early September.
Of the campgrounds located around Lake Dillon, Heaton Bay Campground provides the best opportunity for the aforementioned latte-bloody Mary scenario. Located off Dillon Dam Road on the shores of Lake Dillon, Heaton offers 58 sites, space for tents, trailers and RVs, electric hookups, and drinking water. You’ll find the customary picnic tables and fire rings, as well as non-fancy vault toilets that are, well, non-fancy vault toilets.
If you’ve never been here, know that the recent pine beetle epidemic resulted in many trees being removed from our campgrounds. In this case, it means better views of Lake Dillon and the surrounding Gore and Tenmile ranges, but less shade at your picnic table.
Heading toward Keystone on U.S. Highway 6, you’ll pick up Swan Mountain Road and find two more campgrounds that afford amazing views. Lowry Campground has 24 sites, with a handful dedicated for tents. There are electric hookups and vault toilets; BYO water. To get there, take Swan Mountain Road about two miles from the Highway 6 turnoff. You’ll find the campground road on the right.
Prospector Campground is in the same general vicinity: Drive 2 miles from the Highway 6 turnoff to Swan Mountain Recreation Area on your right. A dirt road leads to the campground, which has 105 sites. No electric hookups are available here.
For more information regarding site reservations or amenities, please call the Dillon Ranger District at
(970) 468-5400, or visit them online at Dillon Ranger District