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Piñon Flats Campground inside Great Sand Dunes National Park has amazing views and easy access to hiking trails.
On our two-week vacation to Colorado last year, we visited Great Sand Dunes National Park for a couple of days.
It was one of several destinations we had in mind while acclimatizing to the high altitude.
So, sandwiched in between a (literally) breath-taking trip to the summit of Pikes Peak and a fascinating visit to Mesa Verde was this quiet, beautiful park.
Our home base for this stop was Piñon Flats Campground. Considering a visit to the park? Here’s what to expect if you’re camping!
Reserving a Site
Reservations are required and can be made online up to six months ahead of time. The campground is open April through October.
There are over 80 campsites, some for tents and some for RVs. None of them have electric hook-ups.
When we arrived, no one checked us in. We simply found our spot and our name was already on it.
Some sites have incredible views of the mountains and/or dunes. These sites seemed to be on the outer northwest side of the loops, and were (from what I could tell) tent-only.
The trade-off is that the sites with a view don’t have much shade, so depending on the time of year, you might prefer one of the forested spots. (Most of the campsites are in a forested area.)
All of the campsites have a food locker (to keep things safe from the bears), a campfire ring, and a picnic table provided.
Piñon Flats Campground Amenities
You can buy fire and ice (and souvenirs) at the visitor’s center about a mile away, at the camp store (in loop 2), and at Oasis, a store just a few miles outside the park.
The park has clean restrooms stocked with toilet paper, but bring your own soap.
Note: In 2023, campground restrooms are closed for renovation. Port-a-potties and hand wash stations are being provided.
There are no shower facilities within the park, but Oasis (mentioned above) has pay showers.
Will I Have a Cell Phone Signal?
Relying on Verizon towers in August 2022, we had one or two bars of service within the campground. If you need a better signal, drive out of the park towards Oasis.
There wasn’t wi-fi available at the visitor center when we were there, but there was some construction going on, so it’s possible there’s wi-fi during normal operation.
Things To Do Near Piñon Flats Campground
The park is within Great Sand Dunes National Park, and there are multiple trailheads within the campground, such as the Dunes Overlook trail and the Dunes trail.
It’s really fun to go sandboarding or sand sledding on the dunes. You can rent gear at Oasis.
Also, you’re just a quick drive from the main Dunes access parking area.
I like to bring along this Eufy USB-charging handheld vacuum for when the dunes start to make our car rather sandy!
This park also has some of the darkest, clearest night skies I’ve ever seen. If you’re into stargazing, this is a great spot to do it.
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