Medano Pass Primitive Road Camping

Check current Medano Pass Primitive Road current conditions, map, mileage chart and other information before planning to camp along this road. This backcountry camping area requires a full size SUV, truck or jeep with 4-wheel drive (not all-wheel-drive) to drive through soft sand, creek crossings, mud and rocks.

 
Campsite 5.1 along Medano Pass Road
Each of the 21 campsites along the road has a fire ring and bearproof box to store food and other items.

NPS/John White

Primitive Road Camping Overview

Roadside camping is permitted only at 21 numbered campsites in Great Sand Dunes National Preserve beginning 5.2 miles from where the road begins near Piñon Flats Campground. These sites are indicated with a brown post and camping symbol, and are numbered by approximate road mileage from the Park/Preserve boundary to Medano Pass. Numbers in parentheses are approximate road mileage from Medano Pass down to the Preserve/Park boundary. Roadside car camping is only permitted in designated sites in the national preserve. Vehicle access to these sites is only available late spring through fall, depending on snow, creek, and road conditions.

These designated sites are free of charge and first-come, first-served. All 21 sites fill on summer holiday weekends, and often on other summer weekends.

Camping Regulations for Medano Pass Campsites

  • Camping is permitted in designated, marked sites only in the national preserve. No permits are necessary.
  • Tents must be located within 40 feet of the front of the bear box at each site.
  • Pets must be leashed or restrained at all times.
  • Fires only in existing fire rings; put out completely with water. Gather dead and down firewood 4” or less diameter.
  • No off-road driving. Vehicles must be highway-legal in Colorado. Park only in designated campsites or parking areas.
  • Secure food, coolers, toiletries, and trash from black bears. Lock them in the bear boxes provided at most sites.
  • All trash, including orange peels, egg shells and toilet paper, must be removed. Bury human waste 6” deep.

Last updated: April 4, 2023

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Mailing Address:

Visitor Center
11999 State Highway 150

Mosca, CO 81146

Phone:

719-378-6395
In the event of a medical emergency, missing person, or fire: Call 911. For non-emergencies (non-life-threatening situations): Call (719) 589-5807.

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