Our dear friends Michael and Diane filed this report on camping at Mt. Lemmon.
Our favorite campground on Mt Lemmon is Spencer Canyon. It's the campground at the highest elevation - around 8,000 feet. It's the coolest in the summer, so you can still enjoy a campfire if allowed.
Michael and I have toured every campsite on Mt Lemmon during various visits. There are 4 or 5 camp grounds at various elevations plus a group/reservation site. The camp sites at Spencer Canyon are well-spaced for privacy with clean, pine smelling air and many lovely pine trees. The big Aspen fire of 2003 did little damage here. (A massive cleanup is currently underway, July, 2012.)
There are 66 sites situated in 3 loops. Some people like the 3rd and last loop – Turkey Track - because it has a few sites with city views. Quite pretty at night. We have a few sites we prefer but we won’t tell you for fear they will get too popular!!!!!
Another popular campground is Rose Canyon. Families like it because it has a the mile -round lake where they can walk. The kids can throw a fishing line in the lake. Bait and tackle are available nearby. This is a larger campsite than Spencer Canyon. The elevation is around 5.000 or 6,000 feet. The kids love it and the campground is more level. For us, it gets too busy and is not as cool as Spencer.
Dogs are allowed to camp tethered. One thing that is nice about both Mt. Lemmon and Catalina State Park is that dogs on leash are allowed in campgrounds and on the trails.
For additional information on Camping on Mt. Lemmon, please see the Coronado National Forest Website.