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Colorado Natural Areas Program - CNAP
Colorado Natural Areas Program - CNAP
CNAP Area El Park.

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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Established by statute in 1977, the Colorado Natural Areas Program is a statewide program focused on the recognition and protection of areas that contain at least one uniqu​e or high-quality natural featu​​​​re of statewide significance.

The Colorado Natural Areas Program, working with interested landowners and dedicated volunteers, helps to conserve Colorado’s best places well into the future. To date, more than 250 rare, threatened or endangered species and communities are monitored and cooperatively protected at 96 designated sites in Colorado, with more in the works. Natural areas are found on public or private land and are designated through land management agreements with landowners.​ CNAP is the only statewide program within Colorado that provides a sys​tem for recognizing these unique natural places. ​​

 Colorado Natural Areas Program

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 Explore Our Natural Areas

Want to learn more about a specific Colorado natural area? Explore this interactive map to learn about all 96 sites in the state. Ever wondered what a significant natural features is? This map also contains stunning pictures and info about several unique natural features found within our state natural areas. You can also find this map by going to the Natural Areas Information page.  

 Get to Know CNAP

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Want to learn more about CNAP but don't know where to start? Check out this interactive story map from 2019 that gives a great overview of our program. This immersive tool will guide you through who we are, our volunteers,conservation  successes, and more!​

 New Natural Area!

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       ​                                    CNAP recently celebrated the designation of our 96th Natural Area, Coal Creek Tallgrass Prairie! This is a 1,470 acre property with high-quailty xeric tallgrass prairie and a suite of rare species. We also completed expansions of two other Natural Areas: Colorado Tallgrass Prairie and White   Rocks​​. All three sites are owned by the City of Boulder Open Space & Mtn. Parks. 

CNAP Triennial Report​​

CNAP report coverThe​ CNAP Triennial Report for 2011 - 2023 is issued every three years and relates the status of the State’s most special areas and highlights recent accomplishments, new designations, and the program’s emphasis on rare plant conservation.​​

​​Annual Newsletter

CNAP newsletter coverIn 2022, CNAP celebrated its 45th anniversary! We've come a long way, but continue to rely on the dedication of our staff, Council, volunteer stewards, and partners to carry out our mission. To learn more about upcoming designations, conservation highlights, and more please read CNAP's 2023 Annual N​​ewsletter​​