Nymph Lake at sunrise, Rocky Mountain National Park
August is a couple days away, and kids are starting school soon (whatever happened to school starting after Labor Day?). But summer outdoor events are far from over.
August 1st is Colorado Day,
the anniversary of Colorado becoming a state. Entry fees to all Colorado State Parks are waived for the day. Take advantage of it to visit that state park
you've wanted to visit, but haven't gotten to yet.
If you're active duty military or a military veteran, entry fees to all Colorado State Parks is waived for the entire month of August
. You'll need to bring documentation to a State Park or Wildlife office to get a special pass, and CPW recommends doing it before your visit.
As I wrote earlier this year
, 2016 is the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service
. Entry fees to all National Parks, Monuments and other sites operated by the NPS are waived on the NPS birthday weekend from August 25th thru the 28th. This is a great opportunity to visit one of Colorado's many National Parks and Monuments.
Dome Rock State Wildlife Area, bordering the south side of Mueller State Park, has great trails, many with great views. Much of it is closed for over seven months of the year to protect big horn sheep that breed there, but the entire area was re-opened for use in mid-July. It's not only a great place for summer hikes, but the fall foliage there from mid-September to early October is some of the best in the area. Don't delay going there, however, much of it will close again December 1st.
To get there: Take state Highway 67 south from US 24 in Divide for approximately 4.5 miles and turn right onto County Road 61 (4 Mile Road). Continue down 4 Mile Road to the marked entrance to Dome Rock State Wildlife Area.
And finally, if you have been procrastinating doing the Manitou Incline,
do it soon. It'll close August 22nd for repairs and improvements and will not reopen until December.
Bob Falcone is a retired firefighter, photographer, hiker, college instructor, business owner and author of Hiking Bob's Tips, Tricks and Trails, available via his website. He has lived in Colorado Springs for over 24 years. Follow him on Twitter (@hikingbob), Facebook (Hiking Bob), Instagram (@HikingBob_CO) or visit his website (Hikingbob.com). E-mail questions, comments, suggestions, etc to Bob: firstname.lastname@example.org.