Alternative Camping Options

Alternative Camping Options

Alternative Camping Options

We setup the official Planet Bluegrass campgrounds to cater to Festivarians. They are close to town; they offer free shuttle buses to/from the Festival from morning thru late-night; they support our Sustainable Festivation initiatives; and they are filled with members of the Festivarian family eager to welcome newcomers with open arms.

As camping in the Planet Bluegrass-managed campgrounds begins to sell out, here are several other options which may have availability in the Telluride area. Please call or visit the individual campground websites before traveling to any of these campgrounds.

Please note: since no shuttles are offered from these campgrounds to the Festival, you will need to drive yourself to Telluride each day (and park in Mountain Village).

Of course if sleeping under the stars isn’t your thing, we also offer various lodging options in the Telluride area.

Alternative Campgrounds

Matterhorn Campground
  • Directions: from Telluride, travel west 3 miles to Highway 145. Turn left and travel south for 8 miles. The campground is on the left side of the highway.

  • Reservations can be made at www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-877-444-6777, TDD 1-877-833-6777.
Sunshine Campground
  • Directions: from Telluride, travel west 3 miles to Highway 145. Turn left and travel south for 5 miles. The campground is on the right side of road.

  • No Reservations available for this Campground. Contact U.S.F.S. 970-327-4261
Woods Lake
  • Directions: from Telluride, travel west 12 miles on Highway 145 through Sawpit. Turn left on Falls Creek Road (Forest Road 618) for 7.4 miles. Turn left on Forest Road 621 for about 2 miles.

  • No Reservations available for this Campground.
Cayton
  • Location: 6 miles northeast of Rico on Colo. Highway 145 (the San Juan Skyway) and 43 miles from Dolores. The entrance is 1/2 mile east of the highway on the Barlow Creek Road (Forest Rd. 578). Burro Bridge Campground is 8 miles west, on Forest Road 535.

  • Reservations can be made at www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-877-444-6777, TDD 1-877-833-6777
Ridgway Reservoir
  • Location: 46 mi. NE of Telluride between Ridgway and Montrose.

  • Contact: Colorado State Parks, 800-678-2267
McPhee Reservoir
  • Location: 65 mi. SW of Telluride near Dolores.

  • Contact: 800-500-CAMP
Miramonte Reservoir
  • Location: 40 mi. NW of Telluride near Norwood.

  • Contact: 970-297-1192
Other Telluride Area Camping

National Forest Camping - No Fee

There is no camping allowed in the Ilium Valley, outside of the Mary E campground. However, camping may be allowed in the following no-fee areas –– provided there are no Stage 3 Fire restrictions in place. Please note that a 7-day camping limit applies in all areas.

Alta Lakes
  • Directions: From Telluride, travel west on Hwy 145 for 4 miles; turn south at Society Turn intersection (towards Rico and Dolores) and continue on Hwy 145 for 6 miles, turn east (left) onto Alta Lakes Road (Forest Road #632). Stay on this road through the ghost town of Alta (approx 5 miles) to campground. Road is rough — for high clearance vehicles only.
Priest Lake
  • Directions: From Telluride, travel west on Hwy 145 for 4 miles; turn south at Society Turn intersection (towards Rico and Dolores) and continue on Hwy 145 for 14 miles, turn east (left) into Trout Lake subdivision. Proceed down road for 1/4 mile, take first left onto unmarked forest road, continue north on this road for 1 mile. Undeveloped camping area near Priest Lake is on the west side of the road.
Lizard Head Pass
  • Directions: From Telluride, travel west on Hwy 145 for 4 miles; turn south at Society Turn intersection (towards Rico and Dolores) and continue on Hwy 145 for 14 miles Lizard Head Pass. See restroom/overlook on right and sheep
    corrals on left side of highway. After passing restroom/overlook, turn left (east) onto small dirt road on left, follow right fork of road that goes past sheep corrals. Camping is allowed only along the short segment of road that passes alongside the sheep corrals. There is room only for approximately 3-4 groups in this area. Please respect all road closure signs. Road is rough —— this is for high clearance vehicles only.