It's crazy when you think about how dry things are in the Cowboy State compared to seasons past. At least one upside is that some of your favorite parks and camping areas, including the Medicine Bow National Forest, will be opened up and ready for you.

On this holiday weekend, visitors will be able to return to sites that have had vast improvements or that had been closed previously due to the recent beetle epidemics.

The only camps not accessible on the Brush Creek/Hayden Ranger District are Deep Creek, Hog Park, and Silver Lake.  Most secondary roads remain closed. Call 307.326.5258.

The Douglas Ranger District has all four of its campgrounds open. Call 307.358.4690.

The Laramie Ranger District opened up several of its sites last week on the Pole Mountain Unit, including Vedauwoo, Blair Picnic Site, and Yellow Pine Campground. The road to Lake Owen is open and day-use is permitted, but the campground remains closed. Call 307.745.2300.

Fees for the day are $5.00. Camping is $10.00. As with any backwoods excursion, be prepared, plan and pack accordingly, and know the rules. Make reservations by calling 877.444.6777, or online at You can also go to the official U.S. Forest Service website, or for more information.