Last weekend we went up to Aspen, but rather than shopping the boutiques, celeb-spotting in the bars, or lounging around the Jazzfest, we opted to head a few miles outside of town and camped out with a large group at the Difficult Campground. For only $16 a night for the spot, we certainly found the cheapest accomodations in the area. Located just five miles up Highway 82 from the town of Aspen in the White River National Forest, the campground is a gorgeous spread of aspen groves, towering evergreens, and alpine meadows, and both the Roaring Fork River and Difficult Creek are nearby, creating a constant cheery burble in the background. The grounds have vault toilets and water available, and each site is relatively private due to the dense foliage. Plus there’s a great trailhead within the campground that heads up from 8,200 feet up to about 9,500, crossing the river and creek and climbing up to offer great views of the valley peeking through the trees. Of course, when our group decided to head into town on Sunday for the afore-mentioned shopping, celeb-spotting, and lounging, my dust-covered manicure had me feeling just a bit out of place. Still, it’s a gorgeous spot and I can’t wait to head back again. Next time I’ll just make my foray into Aspen on the first night, rather than the last.