North Sterling State Park
Guide

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Introduction

Located on the gently rolling prairie grasslands on the western edge of the Great Plains of Sterling, Colorado, North Sterling State Park serves as the ideal destination for your next RV vacation. The park is a nature lover`s delight bordered by majestic bluffs and towering canyons. This 5,700-acre state park features a reservoir with 2,880 acres of surface area. The park is a gateway to fun and relaxation with its adventurous outdoor activities like hiking, fishing, boating, biking, hunting, picnicking, and swimming.

North Sterling State Park has approximately seven miles of well-elevated hiking trails. Biking and horse riding is also allowed on these trails. The South Shoreline Trail is the longest with a length about four miles and an elevation of 39 feet. It is good for quiet prairie ride along the reservoir's shoreline.

The reservoir is a boater's paradise that offers great coves and fingers during the spring and summer months. For anglers, the reservoir is known for catches of walleye, wiper, catfish, and crappie. North Sterling State Park has 38 picnic sites spread across the park fitted with picnic tables. There are several picnic tables with shade shelters in other locations within the park. For swimmers, there is a swim beach with amenities like flush restrooms, a playground, and a public picnic pavilion. Winter activities at the park include winter camping, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and ice fishing.

The park has equipment rental services for life jackets, field guides, and family activity backpacks. There are educational programs for schools classes, clubs, and other organized groups.

RV Rentals in North Sterling State Park

Transportation in North Sterling State Park

Driving

North Sterling State Park is located in Logan County, 30 minutes north of Sterling, Colorado. There are two entrances to the park. The South Entrance leads to Cottonwood Cove Swim Beach, South Boat Ramp, and other swimming and picnic spots. Elks Entrance leads to Elks Campground, Elks Boat Ramp, and the Visitor Center. You will be provided with a park map at any of these entrances so that you have a good understanding of the park`s layout. The map will also show additional day-use areas.

Local roads within the park are well paved to ensure that there is a smooth flow of traffic. These wide roads will take you anywhere you want to go within the park whether in your campervan or rig. There are no strict driving restrictions within the park so you can drive around the park with much ease.

There are well-designed parking spots within the park for both campers and cars. Parking on grass and off roadway is not permitted. You can park your motorhome at the Balance Rock parking area that is located north of the dam. Parking is also allowed at the campgrounds for those staying the night. Only one camping unit is allowed per campsite.

Parking

Public Transport

Campgrounds and parking in North Sterling State Park

Campsites in North Sterling State Park

Reservations camping

Elks Campground

The pet-friendly Elks Campground is open year-round and has 50 developed campsites including 30-amp electrical hookups. All campsites also have a picnic table, shade shelter, and a campfire ring for your convenience. There is a centrally-located camper service building for all campgrounds, and offers a meeting room, flush restrooms, coin-operated showers, and laundry facilities for you to use during your stay. The park also has two RV dump stations located at each end of the park for paid campsite users. You can even play a round of horseshoes at the court located within walking distance of your site.

Chimney View Campground

All campsites at Chimney View Campground have a picnic table, shade shelter, and a campfire ring for you to use. However, these sites are primitive and do not provide electric hookups. Generator use is permitted, except during quiet hours. Showers, restrooms, and coin-operated laundry facilities are located within walking distance to each campsite. Park programs, such as campfire nights, are located nearby at the amphitheater. This campground can accommodate RVs up to 100 feet long. Like the name suggests Chimney View offers scenic views since it sits atop a ridge, however, be prepared for windy conditions. Pets are welcome.

Grove Inlet Campground

Inlet Grove Campground offers 50-amp electrical hookups and all of its sites have a high-use tent pad. All campsites have a picnic table, shade shelter, and a campfire ring. Water spigots, restrooms, showers, and laundry facilites are centrally located throughout the campground. Rigs up to 100 feet long can be accommodated.

The campground is open from May to October. Reservations can be made a day before the day of arrival and up to six months in advance. Pets are allowed at all campsites but not on the swim beach and ski beach. You should not carry firewood in your RV, but buy local firewood near your destined campground. Your pet is welcome to join you during your stay.

First-come first-served

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in North Sterling State Park

In-Season

Boating

North Sterling State Park is a great place to bring your boat and head down to the reservoir. North Sterling Reservoir is a boater’s paradise with 2,880 acres of pristine water for you to explore. There are two boat ramps for you to launch the fun. They are open to motor boats, jet skis, exciting water skiing, and sailboarding. Pontoon rental charters are available through North Sterling Boat Charter and Rental by calling the park office. You are advised to ensure that your vessel has the required safety items on board. Visit the visitor center for a boat inspection. Boating is closed in the winter season and resumes in early April.

Picnicking

There are 38 picnic sites available in day-use throughout North Sterling State Park. Picnic tables with shade shelters are available at the Balanced Rock area, while those with pedestal grills are available at the South Boat Ramp, Cottonwood Cove, and Sunset Cove areas. There are two picnic pavilions provided for group picnicking. The Marina Point group picnic pavilion can accommodate groups of up to 75. Group picnicking reservations can be made by calling the park office. There is a playground close to the picnic areas.

Hiking

North Sterling State Park has about seven miles worth of non-motorized hiking trails for you to enjoy peace, quiet, and wildlife. The trails are well elevated to ensure that you have better views of the park`s features. The trails allow you access to hunting and fishing spots. Horse riding and biking is allowed on the trails. The Overlook Loop Trail is about two miles long and will give you a scenic view of the reservoir and the sunset. It is good for children. Swim Beach Trail provides shoreline fishing access.

Off-Season

Archery

The Archery Range is open daily sunrise to sunset. There are 11 stations with 18 targets within North Sterling State Park. There are three sight-in targets at 20, 30, and 40 yards. They are located east of balanced rock, north of the outlet canal and they are all ADA accessible. Archery range will offer you a perfect balance of recreation and relaxation. Target or field tips are allowed. Broadheads are not allowed. There is no special fee required to access this facility, only a valid Colorado State Parks Pass.

Fishing

Fishing at North Sterling State Park is open throughout the year. The park is home to smallmouth and largemouth bass, bluegill, carp, crappie, and rainbow trout. The reservoir has several access points. It is a magnificent warm-water fishery, featuring wiper, catfish, and walleye. Remember to carry your fishing gear in your campervan so that you may have a chance to catch this amazing natural life. The visitor center offers ice and firewood. Worms, frozen shrimp, and frozen mussels are in stock for sale when possible – call ahead to be sure.

Hunting

North Sterling State Park is open to hunting for small game, archery deer, and waterfowl using archery methods in designated areas. Hunting is only permitted in during established seasons on hunting areas open along the shoreline. You can pick a map at the park office or the south entrance showing the designated hunting areas. Method of hunting is restricted to bows and arrows, so don’t bother bringing your rifle.

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