Everything You Need to Know About the Thousand Trails Parks in Colorado

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RVs parked at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch, a Thousand Trails campground in Colorado

Thousand Trails is well-known among the RV community. Some people buy a camping pass or membership to save money in the long run.

A few hundred bucks for a camping pass for the season is often worth staying a week or two in a campground with all the amenities you need for a comfortable stay. One of these locations is Thousand Trails Colorado at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch. 

As one of the newly acquired campgrounds in this network, Blue Mesa offers stunning scenery and outdoor recreation while also providing the amenities RVers want, like a swimming pool, mini golf course, and dog park. 

Let’s learn more about this Thousand Trails Colorado campground!

What Is Thousand Trails?

Thousand Trails is one of North America’s largest networks of campgrounds, with over 80 locations in 22 states and British Columbia. 

It began in 1969 and has continued adding different membership levels, additional campgrounds and RV resorts, and other perks to ownership over the years. Besides campsites, you can also get cabins, cottages, tiny houses, and yurts for comfortable accommodations year-round.

Thousand Trails is a membership program with various tiers that allow members to stay for free at its locations. Depending on the type of membership, the booking window, length of stay, and other benefits will vary. 

The camping pass is the cheapest option at $670 per year. The Adventure package is the most expensive option. It’s a one-time purchase of $17,000 with annual fees of $670.

How Many Campgrounds Are in Thousand Trails?

The Thousand Trails network has more than 80 campgrounds. They’re divided into five zones: Northeast, Southeast, Northwest, Southwest, and Midwest. 

However, each zone has a different number of campgrounds. For example, the Midwest has eight locations, while the Southeast has 23. The camping pass gives you access to one of these zones. But an upper-level membership gives you access to all of them.

How Many Thousand Trails Campgrounds Are in Colorado?

There is only one Thousand Trails campground in Colorado. In fact, this area of the country has very few locations. Utah, New Mexico, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Kansas, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Oklahoma have no Thousand Trails campgrounds. 

For this reason, many people who travel to this region of the United States don’t purchase a Thousand Trails membership because of the lack of options.

Pro Tip: If you’re looking to save money while camping, Thousand Trails is the way to go! See How Thousand Trails Saved Us $4,585.51 In Camping Fees

All About Thousand Trails Colorado at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch

Thousand Trails Colorado is located in the western half of the state in the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, and Gunnison National Forests.

It has 380 sites that can accommodate RVs of all sizes. Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch is part of the Southwest zone. So let’s learn more about it.


Thousand Trails Colorado is located at 27601 West Highway 50 in Gunnison. Due to the surrounding mountains and forests, many go hiking, horseback riding, and ATV riding here. ​

You can explore the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park to the west, West Elk Mountains to the north, and the San Juan Mountains to the south. The Gunnison River also flows along the southern border of the RV resort.

Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch is about two hours southeast of Grand Junction, Colorado, and a little over two hours northeast of Telluride. Colorado Springs is about 3.5 hours east of the campground.

The Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch sign


This Thousands Trails location is only open seasonally. Guests can enjoy the RV resort and its amenities from May 1 to October 1. However, to avoid the crowds, visit in the shoulder season during May or September. 

The summer sees the most crowds with kids out of school and families taking vacations. The weather is also most enjoyable during these months as the temperature rarely climbs out of the 80s.

In May and September, you risk colder weather but avoid the crowds. You might still see some snow on May 1 and be limited in some outdoor recreational opportunities due to trail closures or road closures. But the beauty of spring in Colorado is worth some of the risks of camping during this month.


Thousand Trails Colorado offers lots of amenities for guests. You can enjoy hiking trails, a round of mini golf, a soak in the hot tub, watching the kids play on the playground, or a game of horse on the basketball court. It also has a lake for fishing, two swimming pools, laundry facilities, and bathhouses.

Ways to Stay

If you don’t have an RV, you have other ways to enjoy your visit. Thousand Trails Colorado has tent sites, cabins, and cottages. 

Some of these lie along Willow Creek, while other rentals sit in the center of the campground, near the dog park and the bocce ball court. It has standard and premium sites scattered throughout the campground.

RVs parked at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch, a Thousand Trails campground in Colorado

What Are Campers Saying About Thousand Trails Colorado?

With 4/5 stars on Google, Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch is above average in amenities, location, and accommodations. 

One guest wrote, “The whole family loved this place, one of the best parks we’ve stayed in. Lots to do nature-wise, and it was kinda nice not having a signal, but the clubhouse Wi-Fi worked great if we really needed it. Wade at the stables was very nice and worked well with our special needs daughter. The whole place is beautiful; we will be back.”

Another guest shared, “The rolling hills have open and shaded sites as well as cabins for rent. It has paved roads and gravel sites — many have full hookups. There’s also a tent area and stables for horseback riding. 

Mini golf, horseshoes, basketball, playgrounds, two pools, hot tubs, and multiple activity buildings provide plenty of activities and distractions. There’s a pond for kid fishing, too. The views of the surrounding hills and reservoir are amazing!” 

Finally, another guest explained, “Very nice resort! Both pools were great, the laundry was plentiful, and the staff was great. Right across the road from the lake and only 3 miles to Marina.” 

Remember that cell service is almost nonexistent in many mountainous places, including here in Gunnison. But what you give up in online connections, you get in outdoor connections with nature!

Keep in Mind: If you’re not planning visit Colorado anytime soon, these Photos of Colorado National Parks will convince you to start planning your next getaway!

Is Golden Terrace South RV a Thousand Trails Colorado Campground?

There is another Thousand Trails Colorado campground on the map when you look at the Thousand Trails website, but it’s not included with a Thousand Trails membership. 

Instead, it’s available with the Trails Collection add-on. Many RVers add this collection of campgrounds and RV resorts because it gives them access to another 200 locations nationwide. 

For $370 per year, the Trails Collection includes numerous campgrounds in Florida, Texas, and Arizona, which is ideal for snowbirds. Additional campgrounds along the Pacific Coast, East Coast, and Great Lakes region offer family-friendly accommodations. 

Golden Terrace South is located in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Golden, Colorado. Guests must have the Trails Collection add-on or book directly through Encore to stay here.

RVs parked at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch, a Thousand Trails campground in Colorado

Enjoy Pleasant Summers at Thousand Trails Colorado at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch

For RVers looking for a comfortable summer vacation with beautiful views, Thousand Trails Colorado at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch may be the perfect solution. 

You’ll enjoy nature’s beauty while having convenient amenities high in elevation and surrounded by mountains and forests. You don’t have to “rough it” to connect with nature. This Thousand Trails Colorado location offers the best of both worlds.

When will you visit Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch?

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