State park yearly pass to become an even better value 

click to enlarge Fall colors in Mueller State Park - BOB FALCONE
  • Bob Falcone
  • Fall colors in Mueller State Park
It's a foregone conclusion that Colorado's state parks are some of the finest places in the state for outdoor recreation.  For a reasonable daily fee, families and outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy much of what makes Colorado a great place to live.  For frequent visitors, an even better deal has always been to buy a yearly parks pass.

2018's "Future Generations Act" gave Colorado Parks and Wildlife the ability to adjust the prices of park entry and camping fees, and also fishing and hunting licenses, to help fund the agency. In 2019, the cost of a daily park pass was increased from $7 to $8 and a yearly pass was increased from $70 to $80.  A family annual "hang tag" pass that could be used by multiple vehicles in the same household was also introduced for a yearly cost of $120.

CPW has announced that daily parks passes will increase on March 1, 2020 from $8 to $9 for all state parks, except for Chatfield, Boyd Lake, and Eldorado Canyon, which will increase to $10, and Cherry Creek, which will increase to $11. There will also be some increases in hunting and fishing licenses, all of which will help the agency address a funding shortfall that came about due to costs that increased while funding remained stagnant during most of the last half of the past decade. 

The prices of yearly park passes, however, will remain the same in 2020 as they were in 2019, making them an even better value. Also, fishing and small game licenses will be good for an extra month, being valid from March 1 to March 31 (instead of March 1) of 2021.

As much as Colorado's state parks are a great value, there are ways to enjoy state parks for free. 

CPW has a limited number of parks passes available through public libraries, or you can earn a free pass by volunteering with CPW. Active duty and military veterans and retirees enjoy free park admission during the month of August. Park entry fees have also been traditionally waived for everyone on the first Monday in August in recognition of Colorado Day. 

Be Good. Do Good Things.

Bob Falcone is a retired firefighter, photographer, hiker, business owner and author of Hiking Bob's Tips, Tricks and Trails, available via his website. He has lived in Colorado Springs for almost 28 years. Follow him on Twitter (@hikingbob), Facebook (@hikingguide), Instagram (@HikingBob_CO) or visit his website (Hikingbob.com). E-mail questions, comments, suggestions, etc to Bob: info@hikingbob.com.


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