Plan your Centennial State adventure from the diverse and convenient FoCo area.
A lively university town, Fort Collins is known for its brew pubs and nightlife scene, but there are plenty of outdoor adventures to be had as well. You can bike just about everywhere in this bicycle friendly town, including the scenic Poudre River Trail. Just outside of town, hike, mountain bike, horseback ride, climb, and paddle at Lory State Park, Horsetooth Reservoir, and Horsetooth Mountain Open Space, then camp lakeside or in the backcountry. The city is also a gateway to the Rocky Mountains and the Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests, where plenty of natural beauty, outdoor adventure, and camping options await.
Mountains and Forests Head southwest to explore Rocky Mountain National Park’s peaks and vistas, and stay in a developed campground or one of hundreds of backcountry sites. At Arapaho and Roosevelt national forests, find 1.5 million acres of forest, outdoor recreation, and more than 20 campgrounds within the Canyon Lakes Ranger District. Explore the mountains and lakes of State Forest State Park, go moose viewing, and choose from developed campgrounds, backcountry sites, and year-round cabins, yurts, and huts. Grasslands and Plains Head east to the Pawnee National Grasslands, rich in wildlife and pioneer history, and plenty of opportunities for recreation, including hiking, horseback riding, OHV riding, and birdwatching. A seasonal campground offers amenities while dispersed camping is allowed year-round. Further south, enjoy water activities at Jackson Lake State Park, where several campgrounds make it easy to stay in a tent or RV lakeside. Camping, fishing, and hunting are also available at Prewitt Reservoir further east. Wyoming Head north for Wild West and cowboy culture in Cheyenne, just across the border in Wyoming. Further west, explore the foothills of the Laramie Mountains at Curt Gowdy State Park, home to several reservoirs, water activities, and year-round camping. Nearby Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest offers millions of acres of wilderness, dozens of developed campgrounds, and plenty of dispersed camping. Front Range Urban Corridor Head south to enjoy watersports and camp at Boyd Lake State Park near Loveland. At St. Vrain State Park near Longmont, enjoy fishing and birdwatching, and camp near several ponds. Just south of Denver, Cherry Creek State Park offers a large reservoir and rolling hills and year-round campsites ranging from basic to full hookup. Or explore Golden Gate Canyon State Park west of Denver, and choose from developed campgrounds, backcountry camping, cabins, and yurts.
Spring, summer, and fall are all great times to visit Fort Collins. The weather is pleasant for outdoor activities, and there are numerous festivals during this time. Spring and early summer are great times for wildflowers in the region, while May and June are the best times for birdwatching in the grasslands and plains. Afternoon storms are common in the spring and summer. Many winter activities are snow dependent.
- Campsites in Colorado state parks require advanced reservations while permits are required to backcountry camp in Rocky Mountain National Park. Some popular parks may limit capacity at peak times. - Many of the recreation areas and campsites in the region are at high elevation. Be aware of potential altitude issues. - Fishing licenses are required in Colorado for those over age 16 and in Wyoming for those over 14.