Recently, I visited Arapaho National Forest located in the state of Colorado. We spent a few days there and decided to camp one night as well. It was an extremely beautiful area, and I really recommend that others visit this national forest as well. This was our first national forest visit for us, and we can't believe we waited this long to visit one.
- Arapaho National Forest was established in the year 1908. Arapaho National Forest is an area that is also combined with Roosevelt National Forest and Pawnee National Grassland. The combined area has approximately 1,500,000 acres, and Arapaho National Forest alone has over 700,000 acres. This area is the most popular national forest/grassland facility in the United States. It receives over 6,000,000 visitors each year.
What is there to do at Arapaho National Forest?
There are plenty of things to do when you are at this national recreation area. You can:
- Go for a hike. There are numerous trails for you to hike when at this national forest.
- Go off-roading. When we went to Arapaho National Forest, we went on some of the off-road trails in our Jeep Wrangler. It was a lot of fun. One of the trails wraps around a mountain and goes all the way to the top. It is definitely for adrenaline junkies as I was at the edge of my seat nearly the whole time!
- Camp. There are a few different camping areas within this national forest (they all cost less than $20), and you can also camp in the back country with a permit as well.
- Watch for wildlife. There is plenty of wildlife here. We personally saw a few deer and a moose. This is bear country as well, so there are bears in the area. Keep this in mind when camping.
- Fish. There is a river that runs through this national forest, which means that there is plenty of room to fish.
- Have a fun drive. We drove through this national forest multiple times, and the views never once got old. You will see beautiful hills, mountains, water, and more.
- Whitewater raft. There is a rushing river running through this national forest. You can take a raft and have some crazy fun.
- Picnic. There are a lot of beautiful views in this national forest, which makes it a great spot to have a beautiful (and/or romantic) picnic.
How do I get to Arapaho National Forest?
Arapaho National Forest is located near the city of Denver, Colorado. It is around a 1.5 to 2 hour drive from the city of Denver, which can make it a great weekend trip if you are from Denver. If you are not from Denver, it can still be an easy trip as there is a main highway located near this national forest which makes entry very easy.
Where should I sleep when visiting Arapaho National Forest?
When we visited this national forest, we stayed in two different types of accomodations. The first night we stayed a hotel located in Silverthorne, Colorado. The second night we camped in the national forest.
If you are wanting to stay at a hotel, motel, cabin, or an inn, then there are plenty of choices for you and your family in the towns of Silverthorne and Granby (and the surrounding areas). If you are looking to camp, there are plenty of campsites around and within the national forest too.
What's your favorite National Forest?