Colonial Creek South Campground is one of the most popular campgrounds in North Cascades National Park. Located on the shores of Diablo Lake, it's also one of the most beautiful places to spend the night in Washington.
The campground is located on State Route 20, also known as the North Cascades Highway. It is approximately 122 miles northeast of Seattle. It offers a range of amenities to visitors, including picnic tables, fire rings, vault toilets, and drinking water.
However, there are no hookups for RVs or trailers, and no dump station is available on-site. Keep reading to learn more about this unmissable campsite along Diablo Lake.
Colonial Creek South Campground: At a Glance
Location: On the south side of State Route 20, along Diablo Lake.
# of Sites: ~100 RVs/Tents: Both RV and tent sites are available.
Open Season: June-October
Why Visit: Some campsites are along Diablo Lake.
The campground has a few different basic amenities to offer campers. They are:
Food storage lockers
You can also expect to find a fishing pier, paved roads, recycling, seasonal water, and more.
The campground operates on a reservation system, and reservations can be made through the Recreation.gov website. It is advisable to check for availability and make reservations in advance, especially during peak seasons.
To Do Nearby
Explore Diablo Lake
Most people who want to camp at Colonial Creek South Campground do so in order to spend time at Diablo Lake. Diablo Lake is situated nearby and offers breathtaking turquoise waters surrounded by stunning mountain scenery. The overlook at Diablo Lake Dam provides a fantastic viewpoint.
Diablo Lake offers a range of recreational opportunities for visitors to enjoy. Boating is a popular activity, allowing people to explore the lake's tranquil waters. Kayaking and canoeing are also options for those seeking a more intimate experience on the lake. Fishing enthusiasts can try their luck catching species like trout and salmon in the lake's pristine waters. You can even visit Diablo Lake in winter.
Winthrop is a charming Old West-style town located a bit further from the campground but still within driving distance. It features historic buildings, quaint shops, and restaurants. Winthrop is known for its Western-themed events, outdoor recreation, and the scenic Methow Valley.
Mazama is a small community located close to the campground. It serves as a gateway to various outdoor activities, including hiking, mountain biking, and rock climbing. The area offers beautiful trails and opportunities to explore the surrounding natural beauty.
This area of the North Cascades is best known for its incredible hiking and views. Some of our favorite hikes in the area include Thornton Lakes (5.2 miles), Desolation Peak (9.5 miles), Blue Lake (4.5 miles), Cutthroat Lake (3.8 miles), and if you want to drive a little further away, Cascade Pass/Sahale Arm (6.7 miles).
If Colonial Creek South Campground is full, you might want to check out these nearby options:
Colonial Creek North Campground
Located right next door to the "South" campground is the "North" campground. It offers 41 campsites that are in the forest and along the lake.
The isolated Upper Goodell Group Camp is a small campsite off Highway 20 that provides access to the Goodell Creek Trail and the Southern Pickets.
Gorge Lake Campground
Nestled along the picturesque shores of Gorge Lake, alongside the enchanting Stetattle Creek, lies the tranquil Gorge Lake Campground. This serene and primitive camping destination offers an idyllic setting for nature lovers.
Embracing a rustic charm, this campground provides an authentic camping experience, albeit without water facilities. In the winter season, campsites are allotted on a first-come, first-served basis, while for the summer months, reservations can be made up to 6 months ahead, ensuring a memorable stay amidst the beauty of Gorge Lake.
Marble Creek Campground
Marble Creek Campground is another good option for camping near Diablo Lake. It's known for its widely-spaced campsites and its forested atmosphere. There is no water here, though, so make sure to bring some if this is your campground of choice.