This was our second visit to Kenosha Pass Campground. The difference in the foliage and wild flowers is very apparent. Last spring our visit was during the last week of May, and there were no leaves on the aspens, no new grasses sprouting, and no wildflowers. This year spring is in the air—afternoon thunderstorms, wildflowers, and hills full of green grass!
The campground looks like it did last year: large potholes and deep erosion on the road. Some of the sites are only large enough to hold one car and some tents. Other sites can hold a small/medium sized camper. Two sites I’d avoid are #17 and #19, as they are unleveled, small, eroded and/or full of roots. The sites in the center of the campground are the best picks (larger and flat). However the sites nearest to I-285 are really cool, with lots of rocks for kids to climb on. We wouldn’t like being near the road and the traffic noise that comes with it.
There was some evidence of the moose around the campsite, but the camp host told us that he (the moose) moved on a few weeks ago. We did spy a muskrat in the pond, across the street. We enjoy going there at the end of the day to watch the sunset, the colors are lovely ever the pond. Cross Hwy 285, and walk up toward the other trailheads. Follow the railroad tracks in the field to your left, and they will lead you to the overlook deck next to the pond.
We brought a small hummingbird feeder with us to hang on the awning. We did have a few visits 🙂 Just remember to bring it in if leaving the campsite, and during the night.
Hiking on the Colorado Trail is a must. The first day we hiked into West side for a few hours. All the aspens are much smaller on this side and wonderful views of the South Park Valley peak through from time-to-time. I’m always hoping to catch some moose down in the swampy area (a few miles in), but there was none to be seen when we were hiking. We came across signs of small deer and elk (scat and tracks) and black bear marks on aspens.
Unlike last year, the trail was not flooded near the meadow, so we were able to add more miles to the hike, coming across wildflowers, butterflies and more aspen groves. The rocky lookout with fabulous views of the South Park Valley is a lovely place for a picnic. Out favorite tepee still stands, with more logs being added to it. From inside, it looks like an upside down shipwreck. I was able to enjoy watching one of my favorite birds, the Hermit Thrush. It sat high on a pine tree, singing it’s lonely song. You can enjoy its song here.
We made it back to camp just in time for the weather to take a turn for the worse: heavy rain and hail. The awning became covered with small hail and needed to be lowered so it all would slide off into the ground. A little shake also helped.
It was time to take advantage of the breaks in the rain and explore around the campsite. We discovered the forest road #482, that starts in the campground, and crosses the Colorado Trail. It’s a nice 4X4 road to stretch your legs on.
The camp host pointed us toward County Rd. #58, just a few miles east of the campground. We were hoping to spy some moose along all the dozens of linked beaver ponds. Apparently it is an Hoosier Creek Riparian Restoration Project. We also drove up Forest Rd. #811 and stopped to walk along the ponds. #58 goes to a lake, but it is a private area called Kenosha Trout Club, and a dead end.
Once again, the campground was a nice quiet getaway.
When: June 12-14, 2015
Altitude: 10.000 ft
Reservation: Kenosha Pass Campground
Site: Level, water (hand punp), non-electric, no dump station