Steamboat Lake State Park
Guide

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Introduction

Steamboat Springs, surrounded by national forests and wilderness areas, is a high-elevation city located in Colorado’s Yampa Valley. The city is located along the western ridge of the Continental Divide and provides year-round recreational activities for visitors and locals. Steamboat Lake State Park, located at the base of Hahn's Peak, is just 27 miles north of Steamboat Springs, and it is one of the Colorado State Parks that brings visitors for recreational activities year-round.

Visitors will enjoy Colorado’s iconic mountainous terrain driving to and from the state park. RVers, driving from almost any direction, can guarantee that they will drive through one or more mountain passes along the way to Steamboat Lake State Park. Some passes have steep grades and switchbacks and winter driving restrictions. Almost every pass has spectacular views at the summit, so plan to stop and get a picture with miles of Colorado mountaintops in the distance.

Steamboat Lake State Park is a highly desirable location for RVers and recreation enthusiasts during all four seasons. The park, located at 8,100 feet elevation, is home to many different animal and plant species, and its lakefront, and mountain views are like those from a postcard.

RV Rentals in Steamboat Lake State Park

Transportation in Steamboat Lake State Park

Driving

From Denver, take I-70 west through the Eisenhower Tunnel to the Silverthorne exit; go north on Colorado Highway 9 to Kremmling, then west on U.S. Highway 40 to Steamboat Springs.

Please note that a valid vehicle pass is required to enter all Colorado State Parks. The daily fee is an additional cost not included with camping reservations. Guests can purchase a daily or yearly pass at the entrance station.

When reserving your camping site, please adhere to RV length recommendations for campsites as trees and turning radius can make navigation difficult within the campground. Back in and pull through sites range from 25 to 45 feet in length.

Parking

Public Transport

Campgrounds and parking in Steamboat Lake State Park

Campsites in Steamboat Lake State Park

Reservations camping

Dutch Hill Campground

The Dutch Hill Campground is a seasonally-operated campground that has two loops offering different amenities. The Bridge Island loop is the primitive-style section of the campground and doesn't have any services at the individual spaces. The Wheeler loop is the more modern section of the campground, offering 15/30/50 amp electrical outlets at each site. The Dutch Hill Campground has a 14 x 14 tent pad at every site along with picnic tables and fire rings, and hydrants are scattered throughout the campground. Close to the Dutch Hill Campground is a marina, a swim beach, a camper services building with coin-operated showers and laundry, and a dump station. Campers wishing to have a fire should purchase wood at the marina store. No out of state wood is allowed. Quiet hours are from 10 pm until 6 am, and all generators and noise making equipment should remain off during these hours.

Sunrise Vista Campground

The Sunrise Vista Campground is a seasonally-operated campground that has six loops offering different amenities. Larkspur, Lupine, and Yarrow loops have 15/30/50 amp electric sites, while Arnica, Harebell, and Rosecrown are non-electric campsites. Sunrise Vista Campground has a 14 x 14 tent pad at every site along with picnic tables and fire rings, and hydrants are scattered throughout the campground. The dump station and the camper services building with coin-operated showers and laundry is not far from the Sunrise Vista Campground. Campers wishing to have a fire should purchase wood at the marina store. No out of state wood is allowed. Quiet hours are from 10 pm until 6 am, and all generators and noise making equipment should remain off during these hours.

First-come first-served

Winter Camping

People camping during the winter in self-contained units can stay on a first-come/first serve basis in the electrical-only spaces in the marina parking lot. There are 14 spaces open to campers. Basic non-electric camping is also available. Contact the park for more information. Please note that camping permits and valid vehicle passes are required for all campers in the winter.

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in Steamboat Lake State Park

In-Season

Paddleboarding

Paddleboarding is an increasingly popular sport in Colorado. Steamboat Lake is a picturesque location where beginners to experienced stand-up paddleboarders can spend the day and explore over 1,000 acres of water. Visitors can bring their own gear, or rent paddleboards and personal flotation devices on-site at the marina. Rentals are subject to availability and current weather conditions. Contact the marina for up to date information.

Photography

Novice and experienced photographers flock to Steamboat State Park to capture iconic Colorado images year-round. Beautiful spring and summer images can often capture Colorado skies paired with wildlife, wildflowers, and green grasses that are juxtaposed with the mountainous terrain. The often foggy mornings in the winter or the brilliant Aspen trees in the fall combined with spectacular sunsets year-round make the Yampa Valley one of the most scenic areas for photography in the entire state of Colorado. Bring your camera and create long-lasting memories that will be sure to bring you back to Steamboat Lake State Park again.

Hiking

Hiking is something that the whole family can enjoy. The park has three trails that allow well behaved, leashed dogs. Take a self-guided walk through the one-mile loop, the Tombstone Nature Trail, and learn about the history and natural facts of the area on your hike. If you prefer a lakeside hike, take the four-mile Willow Creek trail, or walk along the one-mile Poverty Bar trail to learn about the history of mining in the area.

Off-Season

Snowshoeing

If you are looking for a more simplified activity that doesn't require a lot of equipment, bring your snowshoeing gear to Steamboat Lake State Park. A designated snowshoeing trail begins at the visitor’s center and takes snowshoers through a forest of lodgepole pine. This well-marked trail offers visitors breathtaking scenery to go along with a favorite Colorado wintertime adventure. If you don’t own your own snowshoeing gear, visit any of the rental facilities in Steamboat Springs and outfit yourself for a day of fun.

Snowmobiling

Snowmobiling is a favorite winter pastime in the Steamboat area. Bring your own snowmobiles, or rent your gear from one of the many recreational rental shops in Steamboat Springs, and trailer into Steamboat Lake State Park to prepare for a day on the trails. Although most of Steamboat Lake State Park’s trails are designated for non-motorized travel, the park does allow for motorized travel on some of the trails. Begin your adventure inside the park and then head past the park’s boundaries into Routt National Forest where there are more than 145 miles of groomed trails perfect for snowmobiling.

Ice Fishing

During the winter months, experienced ice fishers can fish in Steamboat Lake. Bring your own fishing equipment or rent your gear in Steamboat Springs and spend the day on the ice-covered lake. Always inquire about ice and weather conditions before ice fishing and exercise winter safety precautions at all times. People wishing to fish in Steamboat Lake will need a valid fishing license. Licenses can be purchased at the Steamboat Lake State Park Visitor’s Center.

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