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Visit a State Natural Area
Visit a State Natural Area

The Colorado Natural Areas Program has designated 96 State Natural Areas that represent and help protect significant natural features. State Natural Areas can be owned by any type of landowner and public access opportunities are at the discretion of each individual landowner.

The State Natural Areas highlighted below have public access opportunities and most contain trails and other facilities. Some sites will require a fee to enter and may require coordination with the landowner to schedule a visit. Please check out the landowner websites listed on the StoryMap or flyers below for more information on rules and regulations before you visit.

Guided Tour of 15 State Natural Areas You Can Visit 

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A screenshot of the Visit a Colorado State Natural Arera Interactive Map

Visitable State Natural Area Fly​ers

Plan your visit by downloading a flyer. Learn about: what you can expect to see, location, landowner, important access information, and rules and regulations.

Aiken Canyon Natural Area Flyer Cover

Make the Most of Your Visit

CPW asks all visitors to practice Leave No Trace principles.

Two black women hike along a trail in Golden Gate State Park. Photo by Dustin Doskocil.State natural areas contain features of statewide significance, so it is especially important that visitors leave minimal impacts and keep these places in great shape for years to come. Visitors should always dispose of waste properly, stay on designated trails, leave rocks, artifacts, and plants where they are, respect wildlife, and follow any rules set in place by the landowner.

Some state natural areas are in remote locations.

Cell service may not be available and few other visitors may be encountered. We encourage you to plan your visit with safety in mind; visit with friends and make sure a trusted individual knows your plan.

Everyone spending time in the outdoors comes to the table with different backgrounds and lived experiences.

These varying backgrounds and experiences add value and perspective to the way we think about and interpret the land. We hope that these places are inclusive and welcoming spaces, but know that the reality can sometimes be different, especially for people of color or from other underrepresented groups.There are many groups working to connect people to nature and share resources to make these places more accessible. Consider reaching out to groups such as Ou​tdoor Afro, Latino Outdoors, Disabled Hikers, and Native Women’s Wilderness to find opportunities to connect with other people who share your interests or visit these websites to learn more about increasing access to the outdoors for everyone.

The history of each natural area is important.

When visiting state natural areas, we encourage you to learn about and reflect on their history. A great place to start is by visiting the website or downloading their app to your a​pple or android phone to learn about which Indigenous nations historically or currently live on the land you are visiting.