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Enjoy Year-Round Outdoor Adventures In Northwest CO

Engaging in several outdoor adventures in Northwest Colorado should be high on your to-do list. The region is famous for downhill skiing and winter sports but it also offers rivers, red rock canyons and alpine lakes for summer recreation. Take a ride on the state’s longest alpine slide at Winter Park, go hot air ballooning, or trek more than 600 miles of mountain biking trails. Elkhead State Park, east of Craig, attracts anglers to Elkhead Reservoir, famous for small mouth bass, northern pike and trout. Take a hike along the shore, go power boating, or enjoy miles of trails for hiking, bird watching, biking and horseback riding. The Colorado National Monument spans 32 square miles and offers amazing views of canyons, cliffs and rock formations. Climb to the summit of Independence Monument, take a stargazing tour, or hike past rivers, red rock canyons and desert vegetation. Frisco boasts 55 miles of mountain biking trails. Explore trailheads near downtown, go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing at the Frisco Nordic Center or paddle board to Sentinel Island from Frisco Bay Marina. The Snowmass Ski Area is popular for winter sports and offers summer activities ranging from hiking and biking to fishing and rafting.

Elkhead State Park

Set in northwestern Colorado, Elkhead State Park is the perfect escape for a summer vacation. The park is located in Yampa Valley, just 16 miles east of the town of Craig – and a quick day trip from the Dinosaur National Monument.

Part of the 3,000-acre Yampa River State Parkalong with the 134-mile Yampa River, Elkhead State Park features incredible water recreation, plus hiking, hunting, and picnicking.

Visitors of Elkhead State Park may as well head straight for the 900-acre Elkhead Reservoir. Fishermen, break out the rod and reel and start hooking small mouth bass, crappie, northern pike, catfish and plenty of trout. Powerboats are welcome on the reservoir, along with swimmers in designated splash zones like Swim Beach.

Other Elkhead State Park activities include scenic hikes along the reservoir’s lengthy shores, as well as wildlife viewing and nature photography. Hungry? Picnic sites are found neighboring the boat ramp, Swim Beach, Ski Beach, and East Beach. Enjoy your time at the scenic Elkhead State Park.

Colorado National Monument

Spread across 32-square miles, the Colorado National Monument delights with breath-taking views of colorful deep canyons, towering cliffs, and balanced rocks.

Enjoy ranger-led programs, hiking, sightseeing, and biking through northern Colorado plateaus and canyons.

Be sure to climb to the 450-foot top of Independence Monument for a magnificent bird's-eye view.

The park's main attraction, Monument Canyon encompasses 20,500 acres and includes unique rock formations such as the Kissing Couple and Coke Ovens.