Lory State Park, 12 miles west of Fort Collins, straddles the transition zone from prairie to peak. The 2,492-acre park, established in 1967, embraces three life zones—prairie grasslands, mountain scrub, and ponderosa pine woodlands. The dog-friendly park offers 26 miles of hiking trails. One of the best climbs is located two miles to the summit of Arthur’s Rock, a popular rock climbing area. Other visitors picnic, ride horses, camp at six backcountry sites, ride mountain bikes, fish at Horsetooth Reservoir, and play volleyball at the Timber Group Picnic Area.
State Park Maps
- Lory offers fun rock climbing on numerous boulders and on Arthur’s Rock, a bulging granite outcrop. Ask at the visitor’s center to check out a current climbing and bouldering guide. Many routes are bolted sport climbs. Bring a rack, rope, and crash pad for high adventure.
- Bring your pouch to the park, one of the few dog-friendly state parks in Colorado. Make sure they’re on a six-foot or shorter leash, and bring plastic bags to pick up and properly dispose of doggie waste.
- The park’s a great local picnic spot with many picnic grounds scattered around. Look for covered or tree-shaded sites in summer, and BBQ grills for charcoal fires. There are also three group picnic areas for family reunions.
- The park has six backcountry campsites. Bring a pack, tent, and food and enjoy some peace and quiet in the mountains.
Recommended season(s): Year round.
—Stewart M. Green