Add to Bucket List Add to Bucket List Item Completed Item Completed Delete List Delete List E-Mail E-Mail Facebook Facebook Facebook Facebook Gallery Click to view a gallery of photos Google Plus Google Plus Google Plus Google Plus Save Save this content to your profile Instagram Instagram Linked In Linked In Separator Separator Pinterest Pinterest Pinterest Pinterest Search Search Share Share OutThere Colorado OutThere Colorado Toggle Nav Toggle Nav Cart Cart Grid Layout Grid Layout Image Loading Image Loading List Layout List Layout Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter YouTube YouTube Save Save this content to your profile
Lathrop State Park. Photo Credit: Aaron Spong - OutThere Colorado.
Lathrop State Park. Photo Credit: Aaron Spong - OutThere Colorado.

Lathrop State Park

Things to do

BirdingCampingCanoeingFishingFly FishingHikingKayakingMotorcycle RidingOff-Road VehiclesRoad BikingRunningStand Up PaddleboardingStargazingSwimmingWater ActivitiesWildlife

Lathrop State Park, Colorado’s first state park, is a perfect weekend getaway with two lakes for fishing, swimming, and boating, trails for hiking and mountain biking, an archery range, horse trail, and plenty of campsites for tents, trailers, and RVs. The 1,594-acre park, located three miles west of Walsenburg, is known for its superb lakeside picnic spots and won an award as one of America’s Top 15 Picnic Areas. Golfers love the park’s scenic Walsenburg Golf Course, the only course in the state park system. Anglers toss their hooks into two reservoirs—Martin and Horseshoe lakes—for trout, channel catfish, crappie, bass, perch, and large tiger muskies. The three-mile handicap-accessible Cuerno Verde Trail encircles Martin Lake, and the two-mile Hogback Trail explores a rocky ridge and the park’s natural history.


State Park Maps

State Park Area


Piñon Campground | Yucca Campground

“Why don’t we go camping at Lathrop State Park,” my wife said. “The boys will love it.” Yeah right, I thought, I’d rather go climb a 14er. At the park, we settled into a spacious campsite, then pumped up an inflatable kayak. My son Brett and I donned life jackets and paddled around shimmering Horseshoe Lake among bobbing ducks and Canada geese. Later we hiked Hogback Trail, passing a maze of sand-colored boulders to a long volcanic ridge and marvelous views. Pikes Peak rose to the north over 100 miles away and rows of mountain peaks spread along the western horizon—Greenhorn Mountain, the snowy Culebra Range, and the twin Spanish Peaks. “You’re right,” I said. “Lathrop is ideal for a family adventure.”

 Pro Tips

  • Visit Lathrop State Park during the week and you’ll have most of the park to yourself.
  • The park has 103 campsites in two campgrounds and three group camping areas. Make a reservation at ReserveAmerica on weekends to ensure a campsite.
  • Bring binoculars and a field guide to identify Lathrop’s abundant birds, including meadowlarks, roadrunners, pinyon and scrub jays, pelicans, great blue herons, cormorants, and western grebes. Osprey seen in summer and bald eagles in winter.
  • Lathrop State Park is great for swimming. Horseshoe Lake, for wakeless watercraft only, is warmer than high-elevation lakes, reaching temperatures of 75 degrees in summer. Martin Lake has a swim beach and shower.

 Recommended season(s): Year round. Best seasons are spring and fall. Summer days can be hot.

Stewart M. Green

Leave a Reply

Lathrop State Park×
1 / 0
1 / 0