Camping at Mummy Range, Colorado
Contained almost completely within Rocky Mountain National Park, the Mummy Range challenges peak-baggers with six summits exceeding 13,000 feet above sea level. Trails and campgrounds provide ideal areas for viewing summer wildflowers, autumn foliage and wildlife.
Set off for backcountry adventure climbing one or more of the peaks, or stay at a developed campground at their base.
Within the National Park, you can stay at one of four campgrounds in the Mummy Range. Glacier Basin Campground is 6 miles from the Beaver Meadows entrance. The campground has 150 sites for tents, and RVs 35 feet or less in length. Moraine Park Campground lies 2 miles away with nearly 250 sites for RVs up to 40 feet in length, as well as tents.
Aspenglen near Fall River has 54 sites with a tent-only loop, in addition to sites designed for RVs up to 30 feet long. Longs Peak Campground, a tent-only facility near Estes Park, operates year-round on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Whether you’d like to bag all six summits or just take an overnight backpacking trek into the scenic Mummies, you need to get a backcountry permit. You may reserve a permit from the park’s backcountry office via mail after March 1, or obtain a day-of-trip permit in person from either of the park’s backcountry offices.
Go deep into the Mummy Range, entering from the Lawn Lake, Lumpy Ridge or Cow Creek trailheads. Ten backcountry campsites range in elevation from 8,100 feet to just under 11,000 feet. Campsites are clearly marked along the trail, with signs showing where to pitch your tent. Primitive restrooms are available at most sites.
Preparing for High Altitude
If you’re a lowlander, start preparing your body before arriving at the high elevations of the Mummy Range. The more physically fit you are, the easier you will acclimate; but whatever shape you’re in, you can make the transition easier by making sure your body is well hydrated before you arrive.
Keep hydrating after your arrival, as more rapid respiration in the rarefied air causes your body to lose its moisture with every breath, setting the stage for the classic symptoms of altitude sickness. Over-the-counter remedies can help with headache and nausea.
If you have known respiratory issues, check with your doctor before your journey to see if a supplemental oxygen pack could make your trip to the high country more enjoyable.
When to Camp
Developed campgrounds are open from May through October, weather permitting, and snow usually has melted along most trails to the backcountry camps by late May or early June. It’s a good idea to carry a pair of traction coils when hiking early in the season, as some stretches of snow and ice at higher elevations can cover the trail.
Enjoy wildflowers from late May through mid-July, when you’ll find patches of wild strawberries and blackberries along high-country streams. By late August, aspen at the highest elevations are beginning to be touched with autumn yellow, with peak color in mid-September through early October at various elevations.
Bears are active as early as April, and you are required to follow the park’s bear-safe camping procedures, including carrying a bear-resistant food storage canister when camping in the backcountry.