The James M. Robb – Colorado River State Park is a string of five distinct park units along the Colorado River by Grand Junction. The five sections—Island Acres, Corn Lakes, Colorado River Wildlife Area, Connected Lakes, and Fruita—offer lots of outdoor recreation, including hiking, fishing, boating, camping, and picnicking. Within the park, camping is available at 57-site Fruita Campground and 80-site Island Acres Campground. Lots of trails, both hard packed and paved, lace the parks; while hand-propelled boats are allowed on almost all the small lakes dotting the sectors. Fishermen toss lines in the river for bullhead catfish or in lakes for rainbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, and crappie. The park sections are all easily accessible from Interstate 70 and Grand Junction.
State Park Maps
- Island Acres section, at Exit 47 on Interstate 70, lies on a Colorado River bend in cliff-lined Debeque Canyon. The parkland offers fun activities, including boating and fishing in three lakes; swimming in a pond with a beach; hiking Cobblestone Trail along the river; and staying at a four-loop campground. Call the unit office at 970-464-0548 for more info.
- The Corn Lake sector on 34 Road includes the lake, a section of the Colorado River, and the park headquarters. The park has a boat launch for rafters to get on the river; a 0.9-mile trail that follows Corn Lake’s perimeter; and picnic sites, some handicap accessible. The section offers both cold and warm water fishing. Call the park office at 970-434-3388.
- Colorado River Wildlife Area and Pear Park Trail sector lies a mile west of Corn Lake on the north side of the Colorado River. This area, with six riverside lakes, is managed for wildlife and wetland habitat protection rather than recreation. The section has hiking, wildlife study, and outdoor educational programs. Fishing is allowed on the south and west edge of West Lake only. The small lakes along Pear Park Trail are habitat for endangered fish. Fishing is not allowed, only hiking and wildlife observation.
- Connected Lakes Section on the west side of Grand Junction is a day-use only area with four lakes on the south side of the Colorado River. The park has a four-mile trail network that explore the ponds, along with covered picnic sites, a river boat launch for rafters, and boating in the ponds with electric motors. There’s also disabled fishing piers and access.
- The popular Fruita section, south of Interstate 70 and the town of Fruita, offers a visitor center, stunning views, river access, easy hiking trails, birding, boating, and fishing in Bookcliff Lake and Red Rocks Lake. The spacious campground is perfect for RVs and trailers. Nearby are Colorado National Monument, Dinosaur Hill, and mountain bike trails. Call the park unit at 970-858-9188.
Recommended season(s): Year-round.
—Stewart M. Green