Tucked behind the Dolores River north of Rico, Cayton Campground is ideally located for adventures into the Lizard Head Wilderness, encompassing Lizard Head Mountain and the Mount Wilson complex. The campground encompasses 27 campsites spanning two loops: Loop A with 20 sites with electrical hookups, and Loop B offering seven sites that are ideal for small RVs and tents. Of the 27 sites, 16 are available for reservation, 11 of which have electrical hookups.
The campground is named for James Cayton, one of the nation’s first forest rangers. Hired in 1903, Cayton was then based out of Grand Mesa National Forest in Western Colorado, where he built the Johnson Springs Ranger Station, the oldest Forest Service ranger station in the nation. Cayton served in nearby Rico from 1920 to 1937, at the time a part of the Montezuma National Forest.
Ideal sites at Cayton Campground fall into two categories: those best for RVs and those best for tent campers. All campers who spend a night at Cayton will have to contend with noise from Highway 145, just across the Dolores River. Additionally, all sites are well shaded. Those with RVs will find the sites in Loop A next to the Dolores River most preferable, especially those toward the back of the campground, where sites have more privacy. Similarly, the ideal tent campsites are located toward the back of Loop B.