If you’re looking to get in some quality, outdoor time with your dog in Colorado then you’re in luck, as Colorado’s rustic beauty and vast open spaces make it a great place for outdoor adventures.
The following list highlights ten fun spots to visit with your pooch in the Centennial State. Few areas place restrictions on dogs, while some, like national parks, allow them in designated areas only.
This trail is a huge dog-friendly zone extending from Denver to Durango. Stretching across much of the state, the trail provides many miles of outdoor beauty, which is the perfect environment for both you and your pup to bond over some hiking. Some trail areas require leashes but others do not (as long as dogs are supervised by owners).
Dogs are welcome on the entire 486-mile trail except for the 6 miles nearest Denver through Waterton Canyon and the protected bighorn sheep habitat.
Black Forest Park
(Shoup Rd. and Milam Rd.). Just north of Colorado Springs, Black Forest Park provides fun trails for off-leash exercise with supervised dogs. Horses and riders, often with a dog or two in tow, are no stranger to the park.
Looking to get your pup more active? No problem! The park also has a large field for tossing a frisbee or throwing a ball. A playground area, barbecue pits, covered picnic tables and tennis courts complete the setting, so bring Fido and some friends for a picnic at the park.
The town of Breckinridge is a skier’s paradise in the winter, but during the summer the dogs take over. If you’re hosting a dog for the weekend or are utilizing a home dog boarding service, be sure to visit and encourage your host to take your pooch to Carter Dog Park, the town’s fully fenced dog park where dogs are allowed to frolic unleashed.
Breathtaking walking and hiking trails can be found at MucCullough Gultch Trail, Crystal Lake Trail and Meadow Creek Trail. Visits during the summer will treat guests to Colorado’s beautiful late-blooming wildflowers.
Union Reservoir Dog Beach
(461 County Road 26). Located in Longmont, this area charges a nominal entry fee per vehicle, but it’s worth it. Once inside, some areas require leashes while others provide ample space for off-leash running and swimming. A spot near the reservoir’s south shore is a designated dog training area.
Durango Dog Park
(Highway 160W and Camino del Rio). The southern Colorado town of Durango features a dog park right near the center of downtown that’s every dog’s dream. A selection of lodging choices that accept pets are available in the immediate area, making this a particularly fun destination to travel to with Fido.
Located on the side of Smelter Mountain, the park is completely dog-friendly with no restrictions and has a lake for swimming and trails for running.
Cheyenne Meadows Dog Park
(Canoe Creek Dr. and Charmwood Dr.). Colorado Springs locals and visitors alike love this fully-fenced dog park that provides adequate space for the pup who’s looking to get some exercise.
Don’t worry about Fido being dirty upon leaving; the grounds of the park are well maintained and clean.
Lowry Dog Park
(555 Uinta Pkwy.). Found close to Lowry Air Force Base in Denver, this park features an area for dogs to exercise off leash. Typical rules for owners about cleanup and dog supervision apply.
Buckskin Joe Frontier Town and Railway
(1193 Fremont County Rd 3A). This destination in Canon City is a bit different from others on the list because it’s definitely a human-oriented attraction geared for tourists more than their pets.
However, it’s dog friendly, and dogs on leashes are welcome. Located in the Royal Gorge Country, this wild West attraction takes visitors back to the days of outlaws and gunfights. Every visit promises entertainment and a celebration of the old West.
Meadowlark Trail Loop
(13748-13820 W Grizzly Dr.). Located just south of Denver in Littleton, Meadowlark Trail Loop has a nice hiking trail that is a perfect way to spend an afternoon. The trail covers several wide open nature areas, winding through meadows and crossing Plymouth Creek.
Estes Park/Roosevelt National Forest
The charming and historic town of Estes Park is less than an hour outside of both Boulder and Ft. Collins. To many visitors and locals alike it’s known as the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park. The small town has several dog boarding facilities as well as hotels and cabins that accept dogs.
Estes Park has a fenced dog park for off-leash exercise, as well as a lake with a long walking trail. Hiking opportunities exist with your leashed dog in Roosevelt National Forest, but dogs are not allowed on the Rocky Mountain National Park trails and backcountry. The park does allow dogs to visit parking and picnic areas, as well as campgrounds.