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South Mineral Campgrounds

south mineral campground
South Mineral Campground

South Mineral Campgrounds that are still open between September and May have no services (water, electric, trash pick up or rest rooms). Please keep them clean and pack it out. Thanks!

South Mineral Campground is accessed by turning off U.S. Highway 550, about 3 miles west of Silverton, onto Forest Rd. 585, which heads west along South Mineral Creek.

This campground is about 4 miles off the highway and has 26 mostly level sites. Several loops and well-spaced sites are mostly shaded, but some are sunny. Some are next to the creek, and some have large parking areas.

The Ice Lake Basin Trail, is a strenuous, steep, popular hike, it begins across the road from the campground. It leads up above timberline to high alpine lakes surrounded by meadows of wildflowers and rocky peaks. You need to stay on the trail to avoid the steep, dangerous drop offs.

Dispersed camping on Forest Rd. 585 is only allowed in designated camping areas. Follow the posted directions and instructions. The road to the campground is drivable by 2WD, but not far after the campground, it becomes 4WD. Driving off the road is prohibited, but lots of other 4WD roads in the Silverton area are open to motorized use.

At a Glance

Usage: Heavy
Water: Potable Water
Restroom: Vault Toilet (2)
Operated By: Concessionaire
General Information
General Notes:
The South Mineral Campground does not have reservations. The sites are first come first served. There are an assortment of designated areas along South Mineral Road where dispersed camping is allowed so there is plenty of camping in the canyon on all but the busiest days.

Picnic tables, composting vault toilets, fire grates, trash disposal, potable water. No electricity. Operated by concessionaire.

Attractions & Considerations
The campground has 26 sites that are mostly level, at 9,800 feet. Some sites can be accessible to the handicapped are accessible. Several camping loops and large spaced sites offer plenty of privacy. Spruce and fir give lots of shade, but there are some sunny sites. A there are a few sites are along the creek, and some have big parking areas.

Dispersed camping along Forest Rd. 585 is only allowed in designated camping areas. Please follow posted directions and instructions.

Nearby peaks have cliffs of brilliant color-contrasting reds and grays. A waterfall just upstream from the campground adds to the attraction of the area.

There are a number of recreational activities in this area. For those looking to go fishing, Clear Lake is a 3-mile hike north of the campground, and Ice Lake is a strenuous, steep, and popular 3-mile hike west. Mineral Creek can be another good option.

hiking
Hiking

Four-wheel-drive roads go in all directions from Silverton. North of South Mineral Creek, near Red Mountain Pass, routes lead west off U.S. Highway 550 to Ophir Pass and Black Bear Pass. These roads are also suitable for mountain biking and landscape photography.

Directions:

South Mineral Campground is the last developed camping area along U.S. Highway 550 on the San Juan National Forest. Two miles west of Silverton, Forest Road 585 heads west along the creek, four miles to the campground entrance. The road is driveable by 2WD, but not far after the campground, it becomes 4WD. Off-road driving is prohibited, but many other 4WD roads in the Silverton and Red Mountain Pass areas are open to motorized use.

South Mineral Campground area map.

General Notes:
Picnic tables, composting vault toilets, fire grates, trash disposal, potable water. No electricity. Operated by concessionaire.

Attractions & Considerations
The campground has 26 sites that are mostly level, at 9,800 feet. Some sites are accessible for the handicapped. Several camping loops and well-spaced sites offer plenty of privacy. Spruce and fir give lots of shade, but there are some sunny sites. A few sites that are along the creek, have large parking areas.

Dispersed camping on Forest Rd. 585 is allowed only in designated areas. Please follow posted directions and instructions.

Nearby peaks have cliffs of brilliant color-contrasting reds and grays. A waterfall just upstream from the campground adds to the attraction of the area.

There are a number of recreational activities in this area. For those looking to do some fishing, Clear Lake is a 3-mile hike north of the campground, and Ice Lake is a strenuous, steep, and popular 3-mile hike west. Mineral Creek could be another option for some fishing.

Four-wheel-drive roads lead in all directions from Silverton. North of South Mineral Creek, near Red Mountain Pass, routes lead west off U.S. Highway 550 to Ophir Pass and Black Bear Pass. These roads are also suitable for mountain biking and landscape photography.

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