Thursday, April 26, 2012

Big Meadows Campground

Jim and I took a drive up to South Fork to check out our campgrounds for downed trees, snow and general campsite condition.  We were very happy to see everything came through the winter in very good shape. There wasn’t any snow in the campsites and we were able to get into all the campgrounds. We will have minimum pre-season cleanup to do. We’re looking at buying a pressure washer to make cleaning the picnic tables faster and easier.

Next we drove into Big Meadows to see what had been done after we left in early September.  OMG, they came in and cut down all the spruce trees infected with the Bark Beetle disease.  For all our yearly campers - you will no longer be in a heavily wooded area.  Most of the large spruce within the campsites are all gone. They left trees 15-20 foot tall for new growth. But please remember this was very necessary to control the spread of the Bark Beetle disease.

This is looking from the picnic area towards the first loop. Click on the photo to enlarge it and you can easily see the storage shed left of center; it would be around site #11. Then right dab in the middle you can see the restrooms across from site #8.  You never could have seen those before they cut down all the trees. Sad, it is just plain sad!!!

BigMeadows 4.2012 (13)

Click on any photo to enlarge the view

BigMeadows 4.2012 (2)
View from fishing pier
BigMeadows 4.2012 (3)
Tree shredder makes mulch
BigMeadows 4.2012 (5)
Was site #40 next to us
BigMeadows 4.2012 (4)
Site #41-first one on right side
BigMeadows 4.2012 (7)
Left Site #17 on right #18
BigMeadows 4.2012 (8)
Site #18 looking towards water-
BigMeadows 4.2012 (9)
Note water station on left across from Site #18 on second loop
BigMeadows 4.2012 (11)
Looking from #40 & 41 with new restroom near #1
BigMeadows 4.2012 (10)
Open space somewhere
BigMeadows 4.2012 (12)
Don’t remember where

I know it is sad to see the sparse tree cover but hopefully the aspen will fill in the open space.

Remember, you are loved.



  1. I love Big Meadows! Sad to see it looking so sparse.

  2. Oh my gosh!!! It is sad. I don't recognize any of it. Do they plan to plant more spruce or just leave it bare? It's going to take more years than what I have before it is beautiful again.

  3. This is one of my all time favorite places to camp. We camp for years there & throughout the South Fork area. 20+ for sure. Sad to see the trees gone. It was so pretty up there. Thanks for posting pics as I haven't been back since 2006 so it's very fun to see the area once again. If you feel so inclined to post more pics of the areas around SF do it as I enjoy them. We spent alot of time at Beaver reservoir fishing as well. Hope the trees are ok over that way. It's a beautiful part of Colorado for sure.


  4. Found your post as my teenage son and I were recalling our camping trip to CO 3 years ago. Sorry to hear about the trees! This was a lovely spot to camp and my boys so enjoyed the forest there. Thanks for sharing. -Joanne

  5. Just stumbled upon your post as I was my teenage son was recalling our trip to CO and Big Meadows CG 3 years ago. What a great time my boys had there! I am sorry to see the trees have been struggling with Bark Beetle and had to go...sad. But I am sure it will be a great place again once the reconstruction is complete. Thank you.

  6. Thank you so much for this post. I've been waiting for Big Meadows to re-open for a while now, and I'd heard about the tree thinning from some friends in the Monte Vista area but didn't know the reasoning behind it. I assumed it was just the typical cost of renovation - something to do with getting the heave equipment in there - because most National Forest campgrounds in the Rockies are lacking in mature pine trees (in my experience). Neither my extended family nor our Colorado friends have ever found as nice a campground as Big Meadows. I really hope it recovers in time for me to see it close to its old glory.

    Happy travels!


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