Sloan’s Lake Park, located at 1700 Sheridan Boulevard in northwest Denver, is the city’s second largest park and a popular spot for walking, picnicking, sports, boating, and fishing. Sloans Lake, the 177-acre watery heart of the park, formed in 1867 when homesteader Thomas Sloan dug a well and penetrated an underground aquifer which seeped onto the surface. The 290-acre park offers two playgrounds, soccer and football fields, a baseball and softball field, basketball court, picnic areas, restrooms, and a trail system. Fishing, boating, and waterskiing are allowed, but no swimming.
- Sloan’s Lake Park offers one of Denver’s best loop walks, a 2.6-mile trail that circles the perimeter of the lake. The flat, sidewalk trail is popular with runners and speed walkers, as well as amblers enjoying grand views of downtown Denver’s skyline from the lake’s west shore. Park in any of the lots scattered along the park edge and start walking.
- The Colorado Dragon Boat Festival is a two-day event that celebrates Asian-American culture at Sloan’s Lake Park every summer. The popular festival, with roots in China’s traditional Duanwu Festival, features a dragon boat competition with teams racing their boats across the lake. There are also performing arts stages, an Asian marketplace, an Asian food court, and Dragonland, a fun place for kids to make origami and dragon masks.
- Sloan’s Lake Park is one of the best city parks to see wildlife in Denver. Lots of birds live along the shoreline and in the lake, including seagulls, mallard ducks, white pelicans, and Canada geese, which fill the park on winter days. Cooper Island houses colonies of comorants and herons. Wildlife in the lake shallows includes muskrats and wading birds. Coyotes and red foxes are occasionally seen trotting around the park.
- If you’re hungry and thirsty after playing at Sloan’s Lake Park, head west across Sheridan Street to lots of good restaurants in the town of Edgewater. Some recommended places are Rupert’s at the Edge, The Cooler, La Cascade Restaurant, US Thai, and Joywater Brewery with a great tap room.
Recommended season(s): Year-round.
—Stewart M. Green