4 votes

Zapata Falls Campground

Colorado 81146 USA

  • Independent
  • Pet Friendly
  • Public
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“offers sweeping views of the San Luis Valley”

Zapata Falls Special Recreation Management Area (SRMA) is BLM. The campground is located on BLM road 5415, seven miles southwest of the Great Sand Dunes National Park. The campground sits at 9,000 feet at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. No Reservations First Come First Served. It offers sweeping views of the San Luis Valley, the San Juan Mountains and nearby Great Sand Dunes National Park—plus spectacular sunrises, sunsets and night skies. A new trailhead in the campground supplies a link to the South Zapata Creek Trail # 852, and the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness. A second trail, North Fork South Zapata Trail # 868, just above the campground in the day-use area, leads visitors on a mildly steep half-mile hike to the falls that give the campground its name. The falls were formed when South Zapata Creek wore a groove in the crystalline rocks of the Sangre de Cristos, allowing its water to spill onto the soft alluvial soils below. Over millennia, the creek has carved a dim, deep and narrow chasm through which water tumbles some 30 feet. In the summer, the falls offer a cool respite; winter temperatures turn them into a giant ice sculpture.

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  • 3 Reviews
  • 3 Helpful
November 09, 2014
Rated 5.0

Good place! I believe the cost was $11/night. The tent-camping sites were well-kept, each with a fire pit, a picnic table, and a bear-proof box. The view of the Great Sand Dunes and the surrounding mountains was nice. The drive from the main road was long and a bit rough; but didn't require 4wd. If I'm ever camping in that area again, I would gladly revisit this site.

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Zapata Falls Campground

81146 USA

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  • Parking
  • Pets Allowed
  • Restrooms
  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Credit Cards Accepted
Max Stay
Max Length
50 ft
National forest
  • Fifty Amp
  • Tent Sites
  • Full Hookup
  • Paved Sites
  • Sewer Hookup
  • Water Hookup
  • Rec Facilities
  • Group Tent Sites
  • Standard Tent Sites
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