Many Steamboat-area campgrounds to be open for July 4 weekend

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— Campgrounds in the Routt National Forest are opening about one month late this summer, but the good news is that many will be open in time for the July 4 holiday weekend.

Forest Service spokeswoman Diann Ritschard said today that most hiking trails in around the campgrounds remain covered with snow, and forest roads, many of them closed, are too muddy to travel. She urged campers to respect road closures, avoid driving around snowdrifts and observe the fireworks ban in the National Forest.

The status of campgrounds follows:

In the Steamboat Springs area, Dumont Lake (on Rabbit Ears Pass), Hahn's Peak, Freeman, Seedhouse, Hinman and Dry Lake campgrounds are open.

In the Yampa area, the Bear River road to Stillwater Lake is open, as are the 30 dispersed camp sites and the three developed campgrounds along the road — Bear Lake Campground, Cold Springs and Horseshoe.

The hiking trails in this area are still mostly snow-covered. The road to Gardner and Harper lakes is open. Dunckley Pass is open, but still has a lot of snow. Chapman campground is open. The road to Sheriff's Reservoir is open, but the campgrounds are still snowed in.

Crosho Lake, on the edge of the Flat Tops between Phippsburg and Yampa, is open, as is the trail to Allen Basin. Lynx Pass (Routt County Road 16) is open. Parts of many other roads on Gore Pass are open. Blacktail Campground is open.

In the Walden area on the east side of the Continental Divide, roads are open but may be impassable because of snow and mud, especially at higher elevations. Big Creek, Teal, Hidden Lakes and Aspen campgrounds are open. The district-wide road and motorized trail closure has been lifted.

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