Let’s Work Together to Keep Colorado Wild

Senate Bill SB21-249 has been introduced as a concept to help Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) re-shape the way our state parks are funded, increase access to parks and demonstrate CPW’s commitment to conserving the wildlife and places that make Colorado so special.
Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area Man in Kayak in Rapids

Introducing the Keep Colorado Wild Pass

To address the challenges of rapid growth in demand for, and impacts from, outdoor recreation, CPW asks all Coloradans to financially support wildlife conservation and the trails and other outdoor recreation infrastructure they desire. The “Keep Colorado Wild Pass” is a vehicle-displayed pass that will be added when Coloradans register their passenger vehicles, light trucks, motorcycles and recreational vehicles. The pass concept is intended to be a lower-cost pass to increase and expand accessibility to more Coloradans.

This new pass will provide access to Colorado’s 42 state parks and recreation areas and other potential public lands yet to be determined. 

To encourage all Coloradans to take advantage of the Pass, the Pass price will be set at no more than half the price of an annual state parks pass (current annual fee is $80). Although we hope Colorado’s outdoor enthusiasts will embrace the Pass, there will be the ability to opt-out of buying the Pass during vehicle registration and annual renewal. 

A reduced price pass for those unable to afford the full-price pass or that are currently eligible for assistance programs will also be available. An annual and daily state park pass fee structure will remain for tourists visiting the state and those that opt-out. 

Existing user or activity fees in state parks such as fees for developed campsites, hunting/fishing license fees, and boat, OHV, and snowmobile registration fees would still apply. 

Check out our Frequently Asked Questions document for more details and FAQs about Senate Bill SB21-249.

Senate Bill 21-245: Backcountry Search and Rescue

In conjunction with the Keep Colorado Wild Pass bill, Senate Bill 21-245 would create a statutory definition for backcountry search and rescue (BSAR) and require a study and stakeholder process to address numerous issues with the existing volunteer-based BSAR program. Colorado Parks and Wildlife would conduct outreach and training on the physical and psychological effects of search and rescue endeavors on BSAR volunteers as part of a pilot program focused on training, outreach, creating policies and discovering funding opportunities. 

Check out the Senate Bill 21-245 Fact Sheet for more details.

Goals

Under Governor Polis, our agency has a renewed focus on making sure we have diverse, stable, long-term funding that is equitable, supported by a broad set of stakeholders and meets the current and future needs of all Coloradans. Funds generated from Pass sales will be directed toward achieving ten goals to focus CPW’s future investments in public lands, conservation, outdoor recreation, and wildlife management.

Strengthening Our Existing State Park System

  • Goal 1: Provide an affordable, multi-agency pass that ensures that all users contribute to keep Colorado wild.
  • Goal 2: Ensure sufficient staffing and resources to manage and protect Colorado’s 42 existing state parks.

Protecting and Educating Outdoor Recreationists

  • Goal 3: Provide Search and Rescue (SAR) teams and avalanche programs with the support needed to keep us and them safe.
  • Goal 4: Develop educational campaigns to promote responsible recreation and wildfire prevention.

Investing in the Future of Wildlife Conservation and Outdoor Recreation

  • Goal 5: Build new state parks in partnership with local governments, conservationists, and recreationists.
  • Goal 6: Increase capacity to address the impacts of outdoor recreation on public lands.
  • Goal 7: Increase funds for new trails, trail stewardship, and river recreation projects.
  • Goal 8: Dedicate resources for the State Wildlife Action Plan to conserve vulnerable species and habitats.
  • Goal 9: Support CPW initiatives focused on equity, diversity, and inclusion in the outdoors.
  • Goal 10: Fund Regional Outdoor Partnerships to support community-driven planning and projects.

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