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View of Pikes Peak from Woodland Park
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Rampart Reservoir

Rampart Reservoir Recreation Area

The Rampart Reservoir Recreation Area offers a wide range of recreational opportunities. In 1967, a special city election approved the opening of the area around Rampart Reservoir for public recreation upon construction of recreation facilities by the Forest Service.

The area, under the management of the Forest Service, was opened for public use in September 1974; Meadow Ridge and Thunder Ridge were converted from picnic areas into campgrounds and opened up as such in 1983. The area is located 4.2 miles east of Woodland Park on the Rampart Range Road, FDR 300. There is a $5 fee for day-use. This fee is included in the overnight campground charge.

The America the Beautiful Senior or Access passports entitle holders to a 50 percent discount of this fee. There is an annual pass available through Rocky Mtn Rec. (719 687 7818) for $40 which covers Rampart as well as Manitou Lake. From April 15 to November 15, the area is open to Public Vehicle Access, depending on weather. Access across the dam to the boat ramp and a parking area is open daily from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Meadow Ridge Campground

Meadow Ridge Campground has 19 campsites with parking areas at least 30' long at this 9200' elevation. Sites 12 and 13 have been developed for handicapped accessibility. Camping season usually begins in early May and continues into September. The user fee is $15/per night/per site. Facilities include tables, fire grates, drinking water, two handicapped-accessible vault-type toilets, and trash collection.

Thunder Ridge Campground

Thunder Ridge Campground has 21 campsites with parking areas at least 30' long within this 9,200' elevation. Sites 8,10,and 22 have been developed for handicapped accessibility. Camping season usually begins late May and continues into September. The user fee is $15 per night/per site. Facilities include tables, fire grates, drinking water, vault-type toilets, and trash collection. There are two accessible toilets.

Campsites in the above campgrounds may be reserved through an internet site ( system or by calling 1-877-444-6777. A reservation fee is charged. Reservations may be made up to 240 days in advance or as late as 5 days prior to arrival. There is a 2-night minimum stay for the above if reservations are made for either a Friday or Saturday night and a 3-night minimum stay for holiday weekends.

Boatman's Picnic Ground

There are 12 picnic units accessible only by boat, hiking or biking to the area within the 9,000' elevation. The season begins late May and continues into October. No overnight use at this site. Tables, toilets, and fire grates are provided. Pack in/pack out policy applies.

Promontory Picnic Ground

There are 34 picnic units within this 9100' elevation. Drinking water is not available. Tables, two handicap-accessible vault toilets, fire grates, and trash collection are provided. The season begins in early May and continues into October. There is no overnight use at this site.

Homesake Interpretive/Wayside

Has an interpretive area, an accessible vault-type toilet, and affords a good view of Pikes Peak.

Aspen Grove

Nature trail, accessible toilet, drinking water and interpretive site.

Area Attractions

The Reservoir is an attraction in itself. This 500-surface-acre lake is backed up behind the 230' high and 3400' long dam completed in 1969. The Reservoir is the City of Colorado Springs storage for 13 billion gallons of domestic water. Because the Reservoir is a domestic water supply, it is subject to considerable drawdown during dry years.

The boat ramp is located at Dikeside; during summer months a boat dock is available. Boating safety regulations are posted near the ramp. Please read and observe these instructions for your safety and for protection of the water resource. Wading, swimming, and water skiing are prohibited. You are to operate boats at speeds which will not create a white water wake. Stay at least 150' from people fishing from shore. Boats may not be left at the boat dock for longer than 30 minutes or on the bank for more than 8 hours.

The Reservoir is stocked with fish by the Colorado Division of Wildlife. A valid Colorado fishing license is required as well as following the State of Colorado fishing regulations.

The hiking opportunities are excellent with the following trails in the area: #714 (Rainbow Gulch), #700 (Rampart Reservoir), #712 (Aspen Grove), and #709 (Nichols). Trails have been developed in order to prevent erosion and to maintain the area in its most natural state. Please help to preserve this area by staying on the trails. Mountain biking has become very popular on Rampart and Rainbow Gulch Trails. Please respect other users.

Winter activities: Includes cross country skiing and snow shoeing. Please pack our your trash as there are no services during this period.

Regulations: The facilities are designed to allow maximum public use of the land while preserving the area in its most natural state and protecting the quality of the reservoir water. To meet these needs, the following rules are necessary:
  • No camping except in designated campgrounds.
  • Pets must be kept on a leash not longer than 6 feet.
  • Dump waste into receptacles provided.
  • Fish, food, or clothing must not be cleaned near water hydrants or other sources of water.
  • The area is closed to the use of firearms or fireworks.
  • Operate all motor vehicles with a minimum of noise and only on paved roads.
  • Public property, natural features, plants, and trees are for all to enjoy. Do not deface, remove or destroy them.
Special Considerations: Rampart Range Road (FDR #300) is of moderate difficulty. The area could be closed to vehicle traffic without much notice in the winter due to snow accumulation. Once the gate is locked for the season, it will remain locked until approximately Memorial Day due to the unpredictable weather.

Use per season: Moderate in spring; heavy in summer and fall; and light in winter.


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