Silver Dollar Campground Overview
Silver Dollar Campground is a medium-sized campground in a thick pine forest very close to Leadville, Colorado. It’s situated near the eastern shore of Turquoise Lake. Though the campsites themselves are a bit primitive, they are well-maintained, and great for tents and small campers.
The campground is within walking distance of Turquoise Lake, making this campground very popular. This campground is further away from the lake than the Molly Brown Campground and offers more protection from the frequent wind that comes off the lake.
This is a very popular spot to go camping. You will want to make sure to get camping reservations early as possible. It can get quite busy during the peak season and on the weekends. So be prepared for larger crowds of outdoor enthusiasts here at Silver Dollar Campground.
However, you if you are looking for some of the more modern conveniences such as electricity or showers, this may not be the campground for you. This is also not a great place for camper trailers and RVs.Reserve a Campsite at Silver Dollar Today!
Silver Dollar Campground Campsites
The campsites here at Silver Dollar Campground are well maintained and looked after. Each campsite is well marked and easy to find. Most are spaced out well to give each campsite some room. The thick trees in the campground help to make you feel like you have your own space.
This is an older campground so the sites are not framed in with timber like many of the newer campsites. Instead they have concrete or wooded markers to help keep vehicles and trailers where they need to be. This gives campers more freedom to choose where to pitch the tent. Sites vary in their ability to accommodate tents well, but each site has room for at least one medium size tent somewhere.
With all the trees, this area has lots of shade. The trees also offer some good protection from the weather and the wind that often comes in off the lake. The altitude, nearly 10,000 feet, helps to keep the bark beetles at bay. Make sure to help preserve trees in the campground by not tying rope to them or putting nails and screws in them.
Campsite Amenities at Silver Dollar Campground
Each campsite in the Silver Dollar Campground has a wooden picnic table that is cemented in place. Remember to bring a tablecloth (vinyl ones work well for these tables). Some of the tables here are pretty beat up. You will want to avoid splinters!
The fire rings at Silver Dollar Campground are hit or miss. Being an older campground many of the original fire rings have worn out and been replaced. They are not replaced with uniform rings. Some of the campsites have high walled fire pits with grates that don’t move. Some have short fire rings with grates that swing open. So, make the most out of whatever fire ring your campsite has. Bolster it with stones and dirt if it is a little beat up.
A nice recent addition that most campsites have are BBQ stands. These are in better shape that some of the fire rings. They offer a great alternative for cooking and fire safety.
Be aware of the fire danger in this area. An accidental fire here will quickly get out of control. Never leave your fire unattended. Please make sure any fires are dead out when you go to bed or leave the campsite. Completely dousing them to make ash soup is the best way to be sure they are out.
Remember to use local wood to help stop the spread of bark beetles. Never burn green wood or chop down living trees! Wood bundles can be picked up at the camp host or in Leadville. Please be sure not to bring any wood from outside of the area. Transporting wood infested with Bark Beetles is the main way they spread!
If you have stayed at the Silver Dollar Campground, please leave a comment below. Remember to mention the exact campsite. This will really help other campers that are thinking about going to Silver Dollar Campground.
Amenities at Silver Dollar Campground
If you love to camp in thick woods, this campground is for you. Keep in mind it’s an older campground. If you are looking for more amenities, you might try one of the other newer campgrounds around the lake.
Well water is within walking distance of most campsites. Make sure that you do not clean dishes at a spigot. This can attract bears. Get your water at the pump, return to your campsite and clean your dishes there.
There are older outhouses around the campground, which are well-maintained. Remember to take a flashlight because the outhouses are not equipped with lights.
The biggest draw to this specific campground is the protected wooded area. Combine that with the proximity to Turquoise Lake and Leadville this campground fills to capacity frequently.
Good fishing can be found all around the lake on the shore. Many also enjoy trolling or paddling around the lake. Larger boats swarm onto the lake on the weekends and it can become quite crowded. So be aware of your neighbors. Give them the room they need so everyone can enjoy a day on the lake!
There are a few trails around the lake which many people enjoy. Make sure that you go prepared when hiking away from camp. The weather can change quite unexpectedly when it comes from the pass.
The cell service here is good on this side of the lake.
Keep in mind that this is bear country. They often see bears in and around this campground, more frequently on the west side of the lake but everyone should be prepared. Please be bear aware and camp accordingly. Never leave food out. Always hide coolers and containers of food in your car. Do not take food or smelly things into tents or campers. If we can all keep these things in mind, the bears will learn to find food elsewhere. Unfortunately bears that learn to forage around humans and in campgrounds are often killed. Help out the camp and the wildlife in the area, be bear aware!
Activities Around Silver Dollar Campground
There are a few other lakes nearby that can easily be enjoyed from Silver Dollar Campground. Head south on Highway 24 and you will come to Twin Lakes. There are a few other places around them but Twin Lakes is the most popular destination. It can be a decent alternative if you are not doing well at Turquoise Lake.
Leadville is just to the east. If you forget something or need to get out of the weather this is a great place to go.
Leadville has always been a very popular destination in recent years and I am sure there are many more things to do outside of Silver Dollar Campground.
Final Thoughts on Silver Dollar Campground
Silver Dollar Campground is a nice family friendly campground near Turquoise Lake. It is a beautiful area with mild weather through most of the camping season. The campsites are well-maintained. Campsites are well spaced in thick woods which gives a feeling of having a little piece of the mountains to yourself.
Because it doesn’t have a lot of amenities, Silver Dollar Campground is a great place to “rough it”. Even though the campground itself doesn’t have a lot of amenities, having Leadville so close is a great backup plan in case of any issues.
This is a well-known campground. Expect it to fill up fast and early during peak times and the weekend. The campground stays full through most of the camping season. Be sure to plan and reserve early if you want to camp here.
It gets cold here at night, even in the summer. Silver Dollar Campground is almost at 10,000 feet. Always have warm clothes with you as the weather can change quickly. Be sure to take it easy here until you adjust to the thinner air!
If you have stayed at the Silver Dollar Campground, please leave a comment below. Remember to mention the exact campsite. This will really help other campers that are thinking about going to Silver Dollar Campground.Reserve a Campsite at Silver Dollar Today!