You have to start somewhere
The learning curve in Colorado can be as steep as its mountains. Colorado’s population has grown by more than 18% since 2004 according to the Census Bureau, and many of us migrants have never contended with tire chains or 7% downhill grade, much less bears or sleeping outdoors.
When it comes to camping in bear country, the “entry level” bar feels like it’s set pretty high. Unfortunately, most of my friends are fellow migrants, so step one was making friends with natives -- or non-natives who have at least camped a couple times before. Options for success included joining a Meetup group, Gociety, or another club designed around outdoors activities. As a woman, I benefited from education-minded meet-up groups like Bold Betties (men can benefit, too, if they’re OK being surrounded by women at most events).