Dispersed Camping – Upper Williams Fork, CO

This area is scenic, but not the highest ranking on our list. That said, there are several dispersed camping spots in the area, excellent fishing, and an abundance of wildlife.

The trail to Lake Evelyn. Good for all levels of hikers.

The first time we camped here was many years ago. The one thing that made this trip noticeably different from the rest though was that we were bringing along our 3-month-old baby girl. Yes, this seems quite crazy to most people we talk to. The same questions are asked over and over. “What did you do with her?” “Are you serious?” Well, she was carried around and took naps in the tent. Pretty much the same thing we do at home, minus the baby monitor. She had begun cutting teeth which must hurt like hell. She fussed just enough to make us doubt our objective but we dealt with her as if we would have been home. We would just have better scenery.

Amateur on the river.

Since that trip, we have camped here for fishing, elk hunting, and hiking. It’s also easy to get to from Denver. The upper Williams Fork is beautiful and full of fish. Brook trout are supposed to be kept as the Colorado Department of Fish and Wildlife deems them invasive in this river. And they are freaking delicious.

Our first family tepee. (Too small with three kids and two dogs)

The surrounding forest contains a multitude of wild flowers. Columbines, wild roses, sunflowers, and on and on, in every color. With the big river rushing by, it is serene. be sure to explore the aquatic life on the William’s Fork. I landed a tiny brown and a very respectable rainbow on a red quill pattern leaving my chest sticking out a bit farther than normal and waded back to camp. I’m glad MH is a good sport about my fly fishing. She has never once told me to shut up about my excited ramblings of the mating habits of flying insects or the jubilation of a wild trout on a dry fly.

Back when I was young and the girls were babies.

Besides brook trout, you will probably catch good rainbows and a brown trout.


Every time we leave a campsite, we pick up all the micro-trash we can find then gaze momentarily at the empty campsite and the fertile river one last time and headed down out of this peaceful world. As part of trip we suggest stopping for lunch at the Mountain Lyon Cafe in Silverthorne which is a staple when we are in the area.

Lake Evelyn. Full of cutthroat trout. Don’t tell anyone.

Directions: Take I-70 to Silverthorne and head towards Kremmling, CO. After about 9 miles, look for a sign for Ute Pass Road and take it east. Drive all the way over the pass. You will see a huge mine, which is hideous and disturbing. Stay on road 3 and start looking for spots. They get better around Horseshoe Campground. If you go right here up Keyser Creek you can drive all the way to the trailhead for Lake Evelyn. Camping all along that road.

Published by willbarch78

I grew up in the middle of nowhere Texas. The nearest Walmart was a full two hours away. My family still runs a ranch back home that I grew up on, but at some point in my treasured youth I hung up the idea of becoming a cowboy, and pursued my passion for architecture. Today I still find myself trying to fit in to a life that has treated me with the average ups and downs one can expect after a certain number of years. My wife and I moved to Denver after attending Texas Tech School of Architecture in Lubbock as we needed a grade change from the Llano Estacado. We camp with our three growing girls all summer and into the fall while I write and create and fly fish to maintain sanity. Life is moving fast as our careers and children progress in all areas, so being outdoors with each other keeps us mostly grounded.

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