The North Fruita Desert campground, adjacent to some of Colorado’s most popular mountain bike trails, will implement a reservation system for camping starting October 4, 2021. The reservation system, previously a first-come, first-serve system, will help manage the popularity and use of the area and “ensures visitors have a campsite prior to arrival,” says a Bureau of Land Management news release. Reservations will be on Recreation.gov.
“We’ve seen the campground regularly exceed capacity over the past few years, especially during peak seasons in spring and fall,” stated BLM Outdoor Recreation Planner Alex Martin. “With recent campground improvements and the addition of the event staging area, the request for campsites increased. People like to know they have a place to camp when they come to the area.”
During a phone call, a BLM representative noted that the reservations will help reduce impact on the land as well.
Currently, there are 59 developed campsites in the upper campground, near where most of the area’s mountain bike trails begin. South of those campsites and the main parking lot, is an undeveloped area which allowed for dispersed camping for an undetermined amount of people. The BLM will develop 53 campsites in this area and these campsites will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. The BLM says in the release that visitors will need to pay a $20/night fee plus a $10 transaction fee for these sites through Recreation.gov on the day of arrival.
There will still be some dispersed camping available in this same southern area of the North Fruita Desert, where current dispersed camping is allowed, but it will be reduced by roughly half according to a BLM representative.
The BLM notes that camping fees are used for maintenance and improvements to the area and these fees will support the camping facilities and construction and maintenance of the adjoining trail system.
Late last year, the BLM began working in the North Fruita Desert area to expand parking, enhance roads, and add an event staging area. Over the next few years, there are plans to build 25 miles of new trail as well.
need some air-conditioned port o johns for the area