You meet all kinds on the road, especially if you like to camp on the cheap in free (or almost free) places, like the Greeley Missile Silo Campground where we stayed for a few weeks, in Greeley Colorado.
I found this $5 a night campground in FreeCampgrounds.com. It’s located far enough off the freeway that there’s not a lot of noise, and what made it especially appealing, other than the price, is it is literally located in farmland, and sits right atop a decommissioned missile silo. You can even go on a free tour given by the caretaker, and go deep into the bowels of this creepy military space.
As one of the only cheap boondocking spots between Loveland and Fort Collins, it’s a central place to stay for a night or two. But we pushed the limits of our tolerance for cheap RV camping spots, and stayed here for almost 3 weeks while we started our real estate search.
It was mostly quiet, but one afternoon, we crossed paths with another camper, a sketchy character who had been staying at the park in a tent. She stumbled out of the bathroom and short of breath, asked me to call 911. I screamed at Jim to get the cell phone. As he went to get it, her likewise sketchy boyfriend showed up, and told Jim “Oh don’t bother, she’s just been drinking. She does this all the time.”
Meanwhile, the woman collapsed on the grass, writhing and clutching her chest as if she’s having a heart attack. In short quick breaths she tells me “I . . . can’t . . breathe! Get him away from me!”
Jim is stunned. I grabbed the phone and dialed. We didn’t know if this was going to turn into a domestic violence episode or what, but I made the call, not wanting to take the chance that this woman was really going to croak.
While we waited for the paramedics, we realized that both she and her boyfriend were loaded, and both reeked so bad, like they had just hijacked a truck full of MadDog 20/20.
When the EMTs showed up, Jim and I ran inside the trailer. From the window, we watched them go through the motions of attempting to treat the woman. After a while we realized that they were weren’t moving too quickly, and were actually smirking at each other while the drunken woman was still on the ground. It was obvious there was nothing wrong with her, other than alcoholism.
She demanded that they take her to the hospital, and the EMTs complied. They took her away in the ambulance, while her boyfriend was questioned by the cops.
Suddenly, the lure of cheap camping had worn on my nerves. The next day after learning we didn’t get that dream property, I had a meltdown. Five dollars a night or not, I was done with that park, and wanted out.
Once we left the Missile Silo campground, I was actually relieved to be paying $500 a month rent at a KOA campground in Wellington, just north of Fort Collins. As much as I hate KOAs for all of the franchised predictability they represent, my paranoia slowly disappeared as summer kicked off and hoards of happy RVers started rolling in.
We’ll be hanging out in this trailer park with slightly more conventional people for the duration of summer, or until we find our ideal piece of land in the nearby mountains. This park is way more expensive and it reeks of the feedlot down the road, but at least it has a pool, and no bum fights either.
10 thoughts on “Bum Fights and Boondocking in Greeley”
Missile Silo Campground. 5.00 per night, first come first serve. Only two fire pits in the whole campground but more of a community fire pit. Drop boxes for your fees. Nice host, cute dog named Belle. He is pretty laid back, does not care if your dog is on a leash as long as a well behaved dog. He does walk the grounds several times per day and collects trash every morning. Ground is a little rough make sure you have good covering for the floor of your tent and alot of cushioning to sleep on. Nice covers over all the picnic table provide great shade and rain protection. Bathrooms are kinda yucky but it is old and probably low on the list of priorities for Weld county. But not the worse I have ever been in. No showers just toilets. There is potable water near the bathrooms. One thing I can say about this campground is that it attracts alot of homeless people and migrant workers living out of their cars, they primarily show up at night but never bothered us. Friday night we were the only ones there. Except for the partiers who showed up late and stayed down at the other fire pit, just young punks with no where else to go. Definatly not patroled by the cops. But the host got on their case and made them shut up. I personally never heard them but if you were near them it could have been a nusance. Over all for the money not a bad camping experience. Not sure I will rush back but would not refuse to go if offer were there.
Robin, I totally agree with your description, it’s spot-on.
We’ve been tempted to go back because of the big money we are paying at the stupid KOA here in Fort Collins, but because we can’t run our A/C when we’re boondocking (our genny isn’t big enough), we won’t be going there again during these hot summer days.
Otherwise though, you’re right. Pete runs a tidy ship there, and for the most part keeps things under control. After all, what would you expect from a guy who’s served in not one but three branches of the armed forces?!
Ahhhh yes, Dirt Bags in the campground..fond memories of late night run’s to the local jail..and then packing up all the junk later..not so fond memories..
You’re having some “great” experiences in CO! Wow! I can see why you were in such a hurry to get out of there. Hopefully you’ll be finding your own place soon.
It was about this couple fighting and puking on each other at a trailer park, so I responded:
I shift my toothpick in a giddy manner when I read such accounts of “lost hopes and broken dreams” behavior at the trailer park.
These things happen but as you stated it’s probably a good thing to have moved on. However, I do believe a market opportunity has been missed. Television offers many delights these days and you really could have cashed in on this one, maybe a quick call to the Discovery Channel, what the the hell, if crab fishing can keep mouths agape for hours on end then why not – here it comes – Cheap Liquor Induced Bum Vomit Food Fights: The Best of Part 1! Has my attention and would make a great if not disturbing series that makes folk cheer for those acid-breathed nay er do wells!
So, the next time a few roustabouts get a little easy on the pour, bust out the infra-red or green or whatever does well to record low lumen’s and capture those destitute arch’s of bile and fast food and whatever; would and should be a hoot.
The Discovery Channel is doing a fair job of making a name for itself serving up some big and hefty dollops of extreme living, travel, work and so on so why not the ultimate extreme of low life livin, here are some episode titles: Bum Lava! Or, Urchin Ooze, or, Homeless Tide Pool! Dang, I love the idea.
You’ll have to stack the deck of course and offer your subjects a shot of Jameson and then a little of that boxed Australian but if you do, then goggles on and let’s get ready to see the volcano blow cause these folks do it like nobody can.
Cameras on, “OK people, I want burps, you heard me, I want those deep from the belly ‘givin’ birth to a sea lion’ belches, you know the kind , and I also wanna see some splatter against this parking lot.” Action!
My idea and as such I want 20% off the top.
All the best,
Ah Eric, you’re too late on that one. Bum Fights already beat you to it.
what did u expect for $5.00 a night ?, ya ni chingas !!
oh my guys!! wow, what a story!!!
that is crazy! i’m glad you guys are ok, that couple sounded a little freaky!
i am glad you all are going to a safer campground!
good luck on the property search too! 🙂