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Camping: Colorado > White River National Forest > Sopris Ranger District

Quick Facts

Chapman Campground

Capacity: 420 People
Elevation: 8,800 Feet (2743.1 Meters)
Length of Stay: 14 Days
Maximum RV Size: 50 Feet (15.2 Meters)
Number of Sites: 84
Reservation Remarks: All reservation sites are first come first serve if not reserved, the reserved sites are 15-20 and 42-83
Reservation Status: Accepted Call National Reservations System: 1-877-444-6777
Toilets: Available Vault
Usage: Light

Chapman Campground Reservations

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

Chapman Reservoir and Campground
Copyright: Zander Higbie - Interactive Outdoors, Inc.
Chapman Reservoir and Campground
Chapman Campground is located adjacent to the Fryingpan River. If you are an angler, the lower Fryingpan is classified as a gold medal water by the Colorado Division of Wildlife. Chapman Dam is a small scenic reservoir located within the campground. The campground is located in a beautiful setting. It is at the base of a wide valley and is surrounded by, and filled with, lodgepole pine trees. It is located 29 miles east of Basalt. Chapman Campground accommodates tents as well as RVs up to 50 long. Amenities at this campground include; water from faucets, vault type toilets, tables, benches, fire rings and parking spurs. Campground roads are graveled. There are no motorized boats allowed in the reservoir. Sites 15-20 and 42-83 on reservation system. Campsites can be reserved by calling Toll Free 1-877-444-6777.

Directions from Basalt: Travel 29 miles east up the Frying Pan Rd, County Rd 104. The campground is located on the right, several miles beyond Thomasville and Meredith.

Seasonal Information:
Normal Services Available: Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend (NOTE: water, trash collection, vault toilets,camp hosts, firewood sales and no fee from 9/25/95-11/15/96) .

Fee Information
Type Price Remarks
Camping, Single Unit Call for Current Fee Includes water, trash collecti
Camping, Group Site Call for Current Fee maximum 60 people, 7 day stay
Day Use, single unit Call for Current Fee
Day Use, group unit Call for Current Fee

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: One of our all time favorite campgrounds - been coming here for years. Great fishing at the lake, lots of nice camping spots - each time we go we find another campsite that we like - have not had a bad one yet. Lovely creeks running next to the campground, raspberries abundant in August (not ripe yet). Hiking right from the campground on Loop E - take the trail to the right of the Group Campside gate - and make sure you take the right at Y. (If you take a left at the Y, nice trail up to a huge rock with a crack in it, trail is a deadend at an old fence - good photo op with the rock though) The trail is numbered up to 25+ but don't know why. Good little 1 1/2 hour hike. Great lake for bringing up a small non-motorized boat, canoe or raft. Kids like to jump off the dock and swim, or jump off the dam. In late Fall you can pick your choice of campsites and not see another soul, although the water is turned off. Dogs must be kept on leash $100 fine but if you are camped down on the river, their leash will reach out into the water for a swim. Can't believe that 420 people can camp at once up there - it really doesn't feel like a metropolis and usually other campers are polite and aware of their noise.
Conditions: excellent conditions, clean campsite, very clean vault toilets, trash easily accessible, no bugs this trip, great shade and great sun exposure
Water Availability: water very available at spickets throughout campground

Filed By: Nicole (Denver, CO)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Not Recommended
Report: We had a campsite right along the road with no shade. It didn't even feel like camping. Even though there were open campsites, the host would not allow us to change. To be honest, the husband and wife hosts were very rude, not accomodating, and acted like cops the entire time. I would not recommend anyone to visit unless there is a new host.

Filed By: Bart Day (grand junction, co)
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: We have stayed at Chapman a couple of times in th past 10 years and found it wonderful.We suggest you go on a week day rather than a weekend because it is a very popular place to camp.
Conditions: It rained very hard the second day we were there and we found every leak that our trailer had.After the rain it was great. No bugs!
Water Availability: The only thing that really bothered us on our 2003 trip was that they had drained the lake! they also didn't bother to let anyone know about this little change.if they did it didnt get posted to the web. The very nice camp hosts gave us free day passes to Ruedi Reservoir however. the camp hosts were nicer and more helpfull than anywhere we have stayed including state parks.

Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: This is a trip summary, not an actual report. Points to be noted while camping here are as follows. You can contact me at myjino@hotmail.com, if you have any questions. 1. No cell phones or pagers work here. 2. Glenwood Springs is 160 miles from Denver and the Campground is 24 miles from there . Please allow yourself 4.5 to 5 hours to reach there from denver. 3. Be careful while driving on the frying pan road, because of deer crossing. Have fun!! To blend with Nature has always been a fascination for Man. As Science & Technology progresses to new heights everyday, Man still tries to explore and experience the wilderness and the primitive lifestyles that his ancestors had lived. That explains the fun and adventure behind the activity of Camping. And we were fortunate enough recently to get a glimpse of what life in the Woods is like. To camp out in the wilderness itself is enough fun, but to do so during torrential rains is more fun, as is clear from our experience this past weekend. Our five member team never had a second thought about selecting the location for camping, Chapman. The perfect mx of a remote mountain and basic necessities was the primary factor in us choosing the place, though the distance from Denver (190 miles) was a negative factor. It was our first camping session and we did have our fears and inhibitions, but we learnt later that persistence and the right mood can help you overcome any type of situation. The following is a summary of events that happened on our trip. We left Denver at exactly 4:00 PM on Friday afternoon. Since we didn't have all the necessary equipment, we rented out the tents, bags and stove. It was raining cats and dogs even when we stopped at the rental shop to pick up things. We told ourselves that it wouldn't be raining at Chapman, at least not like the rain in Denver. The drive was real slow due to heavy traffic and rain and it took us nearly 5 and half hour to reach the campground. One of our friends had left early to make sure that we get the site #6, which is next to the reservoir and a real good place, with great view and all. If only we knew that we would be the only group in the entire site that night, we would all have driven together. Anyway, we reached the site at 30 minutes past 9, to see a greatly relieved person sitting in the car for almost 3 hours. For about 30 seconds, we stood outside , in the rain and asked ourselves a question 'Should we go back and get a room?'. But the answer , again, was unanimous , 'NO'. We decided to go ahead with the camping. In no time , we had tied the tarpaulins and made a shelter for ourselves. The stove was trickier than we thought and luckily one of the stoves had the instructions in it and without much waste of precious time, we were on our way to heat the dinner which we had brought with us. The beer helped us to keep our cool and kept us warm inside!! By now the rain had subsided and we were more comfortable moving around. Surprisingly the guy at the rental shop was proved right when we found out that putting the tent up actually takes only 5 minutes. But that was only after we put the first tent up and it took us about 30 minutes for the first one and 5 each for the next two. By this time, there was no rain at all and the sky was clearing up. From our tents, we could look out at the mountain and a full moon. The reflection in the reservoir and the cold breeze made us think that our efforts were worthwhile. Sitting by the side of the still water, we enjoyed a nice view and relaxed for sometime before hitting our tents and retiring for the night, though it was 2:00 AM by then. Next day we were awakened by the slim rays of sun peeking through our tent. We didn't have anything planned for the day and therefore just took it easy and cooked and sang and did what not!! Vodka with Coke and Ice proved to be a nice change for us, since none of us had tried that before as well!! We went for a swim at the reservoir , but were disappointed since the water was too cold for a swim and had to return to the camps in no time. The rest of the afternoon was spent inside the tent owing to the small rain , but we used it to play cards and our newly found favorite pastime, Dumbcharades. Evening tea was served and it greatly enabled to shrug off the lethargy built up in everyone. Building the campfire, took no time, with the help of the fuel for stove of course!! Even though most of the wood there at the site was wet, we could still manage some as an added 'fuel' to the firewood that we had taken with us. As is custom, music was an integral part of the campfire session and it was the time we were really glad that there was no one in the nearby campsites!! We even managed to scare away the squirrels that were becoming a threat to our food at the site!! Wine , Vodka and Beer was served as beverages for the fire session. By dinner time, we were starting to feel tired after a long day of singing and talking!! Second night at the tent was more comfortable than the first one. Either that, or we were getting more used to the sleeping habits inside the tent and the weather!! As always, Sunday dawned with its great laziness wrapped all over the sunlight. No wonder dew drops were more beautiful on Sundays. Because that was probably the only time we took time to see it. Anyhow, we couldn't afford to be lazy on this Sunday since we had to check out from the campsite. After breakfast and coffee, we starting packing our bags and got ready to say good-bye to the forest. It was a sad experience and all of us felt that we should have stayed more, some of them just because they didn't want to drive back!! Around noon, we left Camp Chapman. Friends, if you haven't done this, you have to. There is no question about the fun you can have in Camping. If you have, then you can relate to what I am saying here. Getting back to the concrete jungle, we realized that even though it was only for two nights, our get away gave us the feeling that we had taken a long vacation. This sure was an exhilarating experience.

Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Camping Chapman Campground
ICON Cold Water Fishing Chapman Reservoir
ICON Games & Play ball field space
ICON Hiking & Walking in the campground
ICON Viewing Interpretive Signs located between the campground and group site
ICON Canoeing Chapman Reservoir
ICON Swimming & Waterplay Chapman Reservoir

Nearby Services

Groceries: regional store (Private - Profit) Directions: Basalt (29 miles west)

Gas Station: several regional chains in Basalt (Private - Profit) Directions: 29 miles west to Basalt

Nearest Hospital: Aspen Valley Hospital (Private - Profit) Directions: 29 miles west to Basalt and 17 miles to Aspen on Hwy. 82. At the roundabout west of Aspen, turn right onto Castle Creek Road and follow 1/4 mile to hospital on right.

Showers: KOA campground in Basalt (Private - Profit) Directions: 29 miles west to Basalt and 2 miles northwest on highway 82

Nearest Pay Phone: US WEST (Private - Profit) Directions: 6 miles west on County Rd 104 to Meredith

Miscellaneous: Propane at KOA campground (Private - Profit) Directions: 29 miles west to Basalt and 2 miles northwest on highway 82

Drug Store: several regional chains (private) Directions: Basalt (28 miles west)

Dump Station: Forest Service (non-profit) Directions: Ruedi Campgrounds (13 miles west)

Physician: various (private) Directions: Basalt (29 miles west)

Church: Directions: Thomasville (4 miles west), Basalt (29 miles west)

More Information

Visitor Information:

Colorado Tourism Office, 1625 Broadway, Ste. 1700 , Denver, CO, 80202, Phone: 800-COLORADO

Links to other sites:
Campground Reservations - Reserve your campground online here with reserveamerica.com


Campground Reservations

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