Sunday, August 8, 2010

Solo Camping, Peak One Campground Frisco, Colorado

I had been planning to do some solo camping this summer, but I have been so busy that there just hadn't been time.  However, at the end of July I had a great reason to spend some time in Breckenridge on a Wednesday night; my cousin's band was playing there and since it was during the week, Josh wouldn't be able to go.  I packed up my gear and hit the road Wednesday morning and arrived in Frisco to set up my tent.  I had picked out Peak One Campground in Frisco because it was the closest campground to the location of the music Wednesday evening, and because it looked like a beautiful campground on one of the Dillon Reservoir's peninsula's in Frisco Bay.   When I arrived there were several sites still available, however even on a Wednesday the best sites were already taken.  I did find a great campsite with incredible views of the water and the surrounding mountains. 

Getting there:  From I-70 take the Frisco exit number 203 and continue south on Highway 9 through the town of Frisco for 2.3 miles from the highway.  Just as you start to leave town there is a stoplight at Peninsula Road; another visual cue for this turnoff, it's opposite the entrance sign to the St. Anthony Summit Hospital drive.   Continue down Peninsula Road for .8 of a mile to a stop sign; turn left here into the campground, there is a sign and it's well marked.   Click here for google map.  
Site number 56 Loop B
Campground Info:  Here is the Dillon Ranger District web page for Peak One Campground at just over 9,000 feet in elevation.  Reservations can be made for Loop B, which has the best campsites,  Loop A and C are first come, first serve, sites; camping is $17 per night as of 2010.  There were several good sites throughout the campground which has few trees, water, flush toilets, garbage bins and lake access.   
Loop A is the farthest away from the water, sites 6,8,9 had the most room and some privacy.  
Loop B, which can be reserved, has several great sites including numbers; 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 45, 46.  All of these sites have great views of the lake; but they are close together.  Site number 55 was my favorite site with good lake views, plus trees for privacy; I chose site number 56 which also had great lake views and a couple of trees for shade and privacy.  
Loop C offers good views of the lake if you put your tent up on the hill, site numbers; 72,74,76,78.  
Overall the campground provides amazing views of Peak One and the surrounding mountains which can be seen from any site in the campground. 
All sites are filled during the weekends; so arrive early to secure a spot for the weekend. When I visited on a Wednesday night, many of the sites were already reserved in Loop B for the weekend and following weekends. 

Frisco Bay in the morning
My Journey:  It was warm and sunny when I set up my tent at about 3pm after choosing my site, checking out the campground and talking to the delightful camp host.  I quickly put up my 4 man dome tent, threw in my thermarest and sleeping bag, and then jumped back in my SUV to hike in the area.  After picking up my cousin and friends; we hiked the Gold Hill Trailhead just a few miles from my campground between Frisco and Breckenridge on Hwy 9.  After the hike, I returned back to my campsite to cook dinner and enjoy the evening; instead I hastily made myself some food before the rain, thunder and lightning hit and I spent the evening in the tent reading a book, cold and soggy.  It was not the greatest solo camping experience; fortunately I was going to the concert that evening and left the tent before 9pm to enjoy the show.  
Peak One Campground Sign
When I returned to my campsite at 2am, it was still raining, my tent was a little wetter, but not terrible, and I was dead tired.  I tried to sleep, but I slept only fitfully until 6am when the crows perched in the few trees surrounding me and started crowing.  I was ready to head home!  Everything was soggy and wet, it was cloudy and cool, but still beautiful in the early morning hours.  I packed up my tent by 7:30am and hit the road home to air out my camping supplies and to sleep in my dry bed.  
It can only get better after this first camping experience and I hope to do it again soon!  

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