With the popularity of “The Hunger Games” movies and books, as well as television shows like “Game of Thrones” and films like “The Avengers” and “Brave,” participation in the sport of archery has skyrocketed in recent years. To meet growing demand, Colorado Parks and Wildlife has expanded its shooting-range operations, opening a state-of-the-art archery range at Cheyenne Mountain State Park.
Nestled in the foothills southwest of Colorado Springs, Cheyenne Mountain’s archery range is located just south of the park’s main entrance along Colorado Highway 115 and Pine Oaks Road. Since its grand opening in 2014, the range has attracted families and sportsmen alike, all eager to test their skills at this modern, first-class shooting facility that truly offers something for everyone.
Experienced archers will appreciate the competition-style shooting lanes with targets ranging from 10 to 80 yards. All targets are mounted on permanent stands and backdrops, which provides the ultimate setting to improve arrow placement and accuracy.
If you’re just starting out, Cheyenne Mountain offers a separate “limited” range designated for novice shooters. Intended for archers of all ages, the novice range features 20-yard targets and is restricted to bows with a maximum draw weight of 35 pounds.
As an added benefit, both the competition and limited ranges are covered, sheltering shooters from inclement weather or the summer sun. Both ranges are also ADA accessible.
If those weren’t enough reasons to inspire you to grab your bow and head to Colorado Springs, Cheyenne Mountain also boasts a phenomenal 3-D target course. Consisting of high-quality, Rhinehart animal targets, the 3-D course features a wide variety of shooting stations along a well-groomed and scenic hiking trail. Lifelike moose, bear, deer and elk lurk among the trees, providing shooting angles/distances similar to what bowhunters might experience on a genuine big-game hunt. The hilly, mile-long course is also great way to burn a few calories while honing your shooting skills.
To help maintain the range, users are required to purchase a valid parks pass to use the standard target ranges. Visitors wishing to take aim at the field and 3-D targets must purchase an additional archery range permit. Permits may be purchased for the day or as annual passes. Day permits are $3, and may be purchased at the park visitor center or through the self-service kiosk located at the range parking lots. Annual permits are $30 and are available at the visitor center.
Written by Jerry Neal. Neal is the editor for Colorado Outdoors Online and is an information specialist for Colorado Parks and Wildlife.