Get Outside, Colorado

Get out and celebrate Colorado! Colorado Parks and Wildlife along with partners are celebrating the inaugural Colorado Public Lands Day, Saturday. Free events, stewardship projects and outdoor adventures are being offered across the state to highlight the importance of our public lands

Colorado is the first state in the nation to establish its own public lands day. In May 2016, the Colorado General Assembly passed a bill establishing the third Saturday in May as “Colorado Public Lands Day”. The bill passed with bipartisan support and was signed into law by Governor Hickenlooper. The purpose of this new holiday is to celebrate the significant contributions that national, state, and local public lands within Colorado make to wildlife, outdoor recreation, the economy, and to Coloradans’ quality of life.

Colorado is the first state in the nation to establish its own public lands day with the inaugural event being celebrated on May 20, 2017. This new state holiday is intended to encourage all Coloradans to get outside and enjoy our unparalleled public lands. Our public lands lands are vital resources providing clean water, protection of wildlife habitat, and offer vast recreation opportunities. Colorado Parks & Wildlife is proud to be to be an active participant in this event and has planned a variety of programs and special events at many of our state parks. Please plan to join us for one of these scheduled activities or simply visit one of our 41 state parks​ and get outside on this special day!

​Check out the list below to find a Colorado Parks and Wildlife event near you…

Events

Steamboat Lake State Park, Tombstone Nature Trail Hike
Saturday, May 20
Tombstone Nature Trail Hike Come meet at the Tombstone Nature Trailhead for a guided wildflower hike and see the summer wildlife. Hike is around 1-mile. Trail may be muddy.

Eleven Mile State Park – 33rd Annual No Name Fishing Tournament
Saturday, May 20
Three species of fish will qualify for this tournament. They are trout (any sub-species), Northern Pike and Salmon. First place will be for the largest trout (lbs), 2nd place for the largest pike (lbs.), and 3rd place for the largest salmon (lbs.). Fourth place on down to 17th place will be for the next largest fish of any of the three species (lbs.).

Arkansas River Cleanup/Greenup and Colorado Public Lands Day
Saturday, May 20
Warmer weather is around the corner and it’s time once again to think about “spring cleaning”. Calendars fill up quickly this time of year, so mark yours for the 26th Annual Arkansas River Cleanup/Greenup (CUGU) and Colorado Public Lands Day on Saturday, May 20th. AHRA will be seeking the help of volunteers of all ages, both individuals and groups to participate. Volunteers can register on Cleanup day between 8:30-9:30 am in either Buena Vista or Salida. Volunteers will receive official clean-up trash bags and a 2017 CUGU button, which is the ticket to our volunteer picnic at Riverside Park in Salida from noon-2:30 pm.

St Vrain State Park – Introduction to Archery
Saturday, May 20
Have you ever wanted to learn how to shoot a bow and arrow but just didn’t know how to get started? Come join us at St Vrain State Park and learn the basics of archery!

Roxborough State Park – Homestead Hike of the South Trails
Saturday, May 20
In celebration of National History and Archaeology Month, join Naturalist Betsy Healey, Kevin Schaal, and Mike Thomas for a short presentation on the events that led to homesteading in the Roxborough area and a fabulous hike to see 6 homesteads and learn of the life and times of the people who lived in them. The full hike is 7 miles but for those who want an abbreviated version, we will have turn around points to make a shorter roundtrip hike of 1.5 miles, 2.5 miles, or 4 miles. Bring water, lunch, and appropriate gear for weather. Reservation cut-off is May 13. Reservations are required. Meet at the visitor center. Call (303) 973-3959

State Forest State Park – Colorado Lands Day
Saturday, May 20
Celebrate public lands throughout the state at State Forest State Park for Colorado Lands Day! -Fishing with a Ranger -Getting your hands dirty with trail maintenance – Nature and Wildlife Talk -Wildlife viewing

Barr Lake State Park – Saturday Guided Bird Walk
Saturday, May 20
Grab your binoculars and field guide, or check out a loaner set of ours, and enjoy an exciting morning of birding at Barr Lake. Join Colorado Healthy Landscapes and the Adams County Parks & Open Space Department for Conservation on Creek. Bring your family, friends, and coworkers for a day of outdoor fun, stewardship, and community on the Clear Creek Trail!

Chatfield State Park – Colorado Public Lands Day – Nature Hike
Saturday, May 20
Take a morning walk with us as we adventure around the West side of Chatfield Park. We will be talking about some of the flora and fauna that emerge during the spring season! Meet at the Gravel Pond parking lot.

Cheyenne Mountain State Park – National Kids to Parks Day
Saturday, May 20
Join us at Cheyenne Mountain State Park in Colorado Springs, CO Saturday, May 20th from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. as we celebrate Kids to Parks Day sponsored by the National Park Trust.

Golden Gate Canyon State Park – Colorado Public Lands Day Hike/ Clean Up
Saturday, May 20
This year marks the first annual Colorado Public Lands Day! A day to celebrate public lands that define our heritage, identity, and way of life in Colorado. Join Park Naturalist Pam on this family friendly guided hike of Horseshoe Trail. Watch for signs of spring in blooming trees, wildflowers and singing birds! We will also do some trail clean up to continue to keep the park beautiful. ​

Lory State Park – Celebrate the First Colorado Public Lands Day
Saturday, May 20
Nature Hike, Well Gulch Trail, 1.5 miles, 10:30 a.m. to Noon. Master Naturalist Rick Bunch will lead a family-oriented, interpretive hike around the Well Gulch trail, highlighting geological, botanical and historical features as participants move through five different ecotones. Whether new to the trail or well-acquainted, hikers will enjoy an enhanced experience with a knowledgeable naturalist guide. Meet at the south end of the Eltuck parking area at 10:30 am. Space is limited. Reservations required. Please call the Lory Visitor Center at 970-493-1623 by May 19th. Bring water and wear closed-toe, supportive shoes. All those 12 years of age and under who finish the hike will receive a special surprise!

Chatfield State Park – Colorado Public Lands Day -Chatfield Service Project
Saturday, May 20
Join us on Saturday and help give back. We will be cleaning up debris in and around the sandy beach areas of the gravel ponds. We hope to see you there! Meet at the Gravel Pond parking lot.

Eleven Mile State Park – Colorado Public Lands Day Hike
Saturday, May 20
Join park naturalist Charlene Barnes for a pleasant spring hike along the park’s interpretive trail. She will talk about some of the trails points of interest that will be passed along the way. Weather conditions permitting, the hike will be about a mile and a quarter in length. Dress appropriately for conditions and bring something to drink. The hike will probably be an hour to an hour and a half in length. Registration requested, but not required.

Golden Gate Canyon State Park – Colorado Public Lands Day Hike/ Clean Up
Saturday, May 20
Join Park Naturalist Pam on this family friendly guided hike on Mountain Lion Trail. Watch for signs of spring in blooming trees, wildflowers and singing birds! We will also do some trail clean up to continue to keep the park beautiful.

Vega State Park – Archery Clinic
Saturday, May 20
Join Vega Rangers and Volunteers in celebrating Colorado Public Lands Day by learning about archery! The range will be set up at the Meadows Group Picnic Area near Aspen Grove Campground. We will provide all equipment needed and a short safety briefing will begin at 2:00 PM. We welcome all ages but children under 13 will need to be accompanied by a parent or guardian. A daily or annual pass is required to enter the park and they can be purchased at the Entrance Station or Visitor Center prior to the clinic. Come on out and “take your best shot!”

Lake Pueblo State Park – Kick Off to Summer
Saturday, May 20
Get the summer kicked off right and celebrate the first ever Colorado Public Lands Day with an evening of family fun, kid’s crafts & games, a wildlife program and nature hike.

Boyd Lake State Park – Campfire Nights: “Creatures of the Night”
Saturday, May 20
Families, children and individuals of all ages are invited to join a Colorado Parks & Wildlife Naturalist for a campfire talk and activity about creatures of the night. Make your own s’mores while learning about some of the nocturnal animals that live at Boyd Lake and what adaptations allow them to thrive in the darkness. After the talk, we will take a nature walk to hear what creatures come awake at night! Bring closed toed shoes for the nature walk, camp chairs, blankets, and water. No registration is required.

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