Looking for ideas to help you plan your next outdoor adventure? Colorado Parks and Wildlife, in partnership with the Colorado State Library, offers the “Check Out State Parks” program to help Coloradans visit state parks at no cost and experience everything the great outdoors has to offer through hands-on learning.
The program is available statewide, makes Colorado state parks easily accessible, and provides a backpack filled with educational materials that recommend a range of outdoor activities to help you decide how to spend your time in nature.
Nearly 300 Colorado libraries (including the Pikes Peak Library District) are participating in the “Check Out State Parks” program, including all public libraries, three military base libraries and publically funded academic libraries.
Local libraries promote the program with seasonal displays, and have one or two adventure backpacks available for check out. Each backpack contains the following:
- Annual Colorado State Park Pass for free park entry (hang tag)
- Your Guide to Colorado’s State Parks
- An activity ideas list
- Leave No Trace – Outdoor Ethics Card
- Educational materials: Fishing Basics Instruction Sheet, Colorado Trees and Wildflower Guide, Colorado Wildlife Guide, Night Sky Guide, etc.
Library patrons can check out the backpack and park pass for up to seven days and use it to visit any Colorado state park. Colorado’s 41 state parks are as diverse as the state itself, and they offer something for everyone. CPW asks participants to please share their experiences on social media by tagging #CheckOutColorado.
These interactive backpacks encourage you to immerse yourself in nature and develop new skills as you explore different environments. From selecting the park and activity, to navigating park maps, observing wildlife and enjoying new landscapes, the opportunity to put nature theory into real-world practice can teach a variety of valuable life lessons.