The Colorado mountains were exploited by early miners that left a network of roads and trails across the mountains that have become forest access roads, and highways. Colorado has numerous mountain passes suitable for all types of vehicles, making access across the mountains quite easy in most cases. This allows people many different areas to go outdoor recreation activities, and I feel offers the best opportunities for remote dispersed RV camping. There are numerous developed campgrounds as well.
The eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains of central California are spectacular! The granite and volcanic mountains are steep and rugged, and few roads cross them. Wilderness areas and national parks such as Yosemite and Kings Canyon follow the "Sierra Crest" for hundreds of miles making RV access out of the question in many areas. Scenic areas have numerous developed campgrounds, and these are usually full of campers. California has far more developed campgrounds than Colorado. Boondocking (dispersed camping) is widely available, but access can be an issue. Much of the ground is a fine volcanic soil much like sand. Getting into many remote campsites needs to be undertaken with care.
Weather at 9000 feet elevation in California is similar to 9000 feet in Colorado. We feel that Colorado gets much more summer afternoon shower and thunderstorm activity than the California Sierra. California requires a free campfire permit for charcoal grills and campfires when there is not a fire restriction, while Colorado does not.
Do we have a favorite? Not really. We love the California Sierra Nevada for their beauty and crystal blue skies for weeks on end. We love the Colorado Rocky Mountains for their easy access to a wide range of different areas of the state.
Both offer great RV camping!
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