Start 2021 on the "Right Foot" with a First Day Hike

Colorado Parks and Wildlife invites all Coloradans to welcome the new year by heading outside!

By Kyrie Collins, Highlands Ranch-Parker-Castle Rock-Lone Tree Publisher December 23, 2020

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is pleased to welcome in the new year by once again participating in First Day Hikes. Several events are scheduled in state parks across Colorado on New Year’s Day. 

The First Day Hikes initiative was created to offer everyone an opportunity to begin the new year rejuvenating and connecting with the outdoors at a state park close to home. The programs are free but a vehicle day pass or state parks annual pass is required to enter the park. Some hikes require advance registration.

Getting outside and unplugging from daily technology creates a unique connection with nature that promotes physical and mental well-being and encourages creativity and stewardship of our shared resources in kids and adults alike.

Visitors to Colorado State Parks can expect to be surrounded by the quiet beauty of nature in winter and experience spectacular views and vistas. Guided hikes range from half-mile fun walks to lengthy and challenging hikes.

Whether you're planning to participate in a First Day Hike, reserving a campsite, or learning to fish, you can start your outdoor adventures by visiting

Find a 2021 First Day Hike Near You!

Chatfield 2021 First Day Hike (9:00 AM–12:00 PM)
Chatfield hikes are self guided this year but hikers can stop by the Campground Services Building from 9:00 AM–12:00 PM to pick up your First Day Hike swag!

Cherry Creek 2021 First Day Hike: Vaughan Way Trail (9:00 AM)
Everyone is welcome on this dog-friendly 2.62-mile hike. Dress appropriately for the weather and meet at the West Shades parking lot. Hot beverage and snacks provided.

Roxborough 2021 First Day Hike: Carpenter Peak (9:00 AM)
Join Naturalists Paul Bleau and Dave Thomas for a 6.3-mile (roundtrip) hike to Carpenter Peak, at 7175’ the highest point in the Park. Enjoy a panoramic view while eating lunch on the peak. Bring water, food, clothing appropriate for the weather, yaktrax or micro spikes, and poles. Registration required.

Roxborough 2021 First Day Hike: South Rim (10:00 AM)
Ring in the New Year on this 3.2-mile hike on the South Rim Trail! Naturalist Ann Sarg will discuss the interrelationships of topography, vegetation, and geology of the park. Bring water, food, appropriate apparel, yaktrax or micro-spikes, and poles. Registration required.

Roxborough 2021 First Day Hike: Fountain Valley Trail (11:00 AM)
Bring your family and celebrate the New Year with a 2.2-mile hike to explore the Fountain Valley Trail with Naturalists Sue and Jim Schleuder. Look for signs of animals that live in the park and learn about the amazing geology. Bring water, snacks, and dress for the weather. Registration required.

➡️ See a complete list of upcoming State Parks events.