Mary’s Lake Campground (Colorado) at Mary’s Lake Road in Estes Park is undergoing renovations.
According to a report, work is underway to remove old water and electricity and put in brand new lines in a section of the campground, said Zenda Smith, Campgrounds Manager for the Estes Valley Recreation and Park District.
“We are adding some utilities to sites that did not have them because we are seeing a need for that with more and more people getting into camping.”
Outdoor recreation received a significant boost during the peak of the COVID pandemic when travelers were looking for ways to get away while staying safe.
The cost of the improvements is around $375,000.
With Mary’s Lake Campground 121 total campsites, the project includes replacing utilities at 18 sites. Six sites previously had no utilities for electricity and water.
The work is expected to be completed in early May, just in time for the season’s opening on the Memorial Day Weekend. The 2022 season will run from May 27 to September 18. Reservations can be made at www.ReserveAmerica.com.
“The campgrounds are full almost every night during the peak months of June, July, and August,” Smith said. “Occupancy has increased 15% since 2015 when EVRPD began active management. 2021 occupancy of both Mary’s Lake Campground and East Portal Campground was 78%. That means last year, we served 21,500 guests.”
Smith said that the work done on Mary’s Lake Campground is aimed to improve the experience for guests. EVRPD has added nearly 200 bear-proof storage lockers, revamped the playgrounds, included picnic table shelters, and replaced tent pads.
“We’re seeing a lot of new people camping, and that’s just going to continue, I think,” Smith commented.
“We’re seeing a huge increase in people trying outdoor recreation. Even the marina’s numbers have increased. Camping is like the Amazing Race. You have to be a good planner if you want to camp in Estes Park now. The days of rolling in and getting a walk-in site are unusual.”
This story originally appeared on Estes Trail Gazette.