Plan Your Next Outdoor Adventure with the Check Out State Parks Pass

The Check Out State Parks program expands outdoor spring and summer learning opportunities with free entry at Colorado's 42 state parks.
check out state parks back packs
Check Out State Parks Program Backpack

Looking for ideas to help you plan your next outdoor adventure? Colorado Parks and Wildlife, in partnership with the Colorado State Library, offers the Check Out State Parks program to help Coloradans visit state parks at no cost and experience everything the great outdoors has to offer.

Over 300 Colorado libraries are participating in the Check Out State Parks program, including all public libraries, three military base libraries and publically funded academic libraries. The program was also expanded this year to include the Colorado Talking Book Library and all the Colorado Mountain College campuses. A new Colorado Birds Guide was also added to the backpack.

Check Out State Parks Program

The program is available statewide, makes Colorado state parks easily accessible, and provides a backpack filled with educational materials that recommend a range of outdoor activities to help you decide how you want to spend your time in nature.

backpack contents

Local libraries offer at least one and usually two backpacks available for check out. Each backpack contains the following:

  • Colorado State Park Pass for free park entry (hang tag)
  • Your Guide to Colorado’s State Parks
  • An activity ideas list
  • Binoculars (optional)
  • Leave No Trace – Outdoor Ethics Card
  • Educational materials: Fishing Basics Instruction Sheet, Colorado Trees and Wildflower Guide, Colorado Wildlife Guide, Colorado Birds Guide, and Night Sky Guide.

These interactive backpacks encourage you to immerse yourself in nature and develop new skills as you explore different landscapes. To reduce the community spread of COVID-19, each educational item in the backpacks is laminated for easy, effective cleaning between uses.

Library patrons can check out the backpack and park pass for up to seven days and use it to visit any Colorado state park. Colorado’s 42 state parks are as diverse as the state itself, and they offer something for everyone.

family using the library backpack
Find a Colorado state park near you.

For more information on Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s educational programs, visit cpw.state.co.us. And before you head out, take a minute to learn more about the Care for Colorado- Leave No Trace principles and how to conserve Colorado for generations to come.


Written by Bridget Kochel. Bridget is a public information officer for Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

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