Outdoor Date Ideas for Valentine’s Day

The wine and dine has given way to the vine and pine- in other words it’s over. Cupid wants you to go outside (and bonus, maybe practice archery too).

Here at Colorado Parks and Wildlife, we encourage everyone to Live Life Outside, so why should your dating life be any different? Valentine’s Day is here… and we all know what that means.

Let’s unpack this season of solitary-shunning and reinvigorate the idea of what romance can really be. There’s nothing more mundane than calling up the same steakhouse year after year, booking the same reservation for the same time, and having the same conversation, over and over. A dinner on Valentine’s day is the heart-shaped necklace of all dates: get your partner what they really want: an outdoor adventure.

Make nature the backdrop to your romantic rendezvous with one of these ideas:

Picnic area
#1 Have a Picnic!

1. Have a Picnic – You won’t have to fight for a spot at this time of year. Just be sure to bring some hot chocolate! May we suggest the intimate shelters at Cherry Creek State Park?

#2 Snowshoeing

2. Snowshoeing – Write your names in the snow- or draw a heart. State Forest State Park has plenty of blank canvases along the trails. 

#3 Skiing

3. Skiing – This could be great for the competitive couple. Our top choice for cross country trails can be found at Steamboat Lake or  Mueller State Park

#4 Star-gazing

4. Star-gazing – We’re not liable if it’s cloudy. For a sure night out of the city lights though, Navajo, Rifle Gap, or Ridgway State Parks are all excellent locations. 

Park office
#5 Park hopping

5. Park hopping – With your new Keep Colorado Wild (KCW) pass, you can go to any of the parks. There are currently 42 options…the world is your oyster. 

shooting range
#6 Target Practice

6. Target Practice – Educational and a blast. Check out the Cameo Shooting and Education Complex– They’re open 7 days a week from 8am-4pm! 

Ice fishing
#7 Ice Fishing

7. Ice fishing – Cozy up in that shanty. Perhaps you would like to try a location such as Elkhead Reservoir (after a follow-up conditions check, of course) 

#8 Snowmobiling

8. Snowmobiling – Don’t overheat. For trails and status updates, check out the Colorado Snowmobiling Association. There are so many great options for your mechanical love campaign. 

#9 Igloo or Yurt Stays

9. Igloo or Yurt stays – Check for reservations at Mancos State Park or Pearl Lake. What could be more romantic than this? 

#10 Glamping

10. Glamping – We recommend this any time of year, especially at Lake Pueblo State Park– they’re open year-round! 

#11 Photography trip

11. Photography trip – All of our parks make for a wonderful setting, but why not head to Pearl Lake State Park this weekend for some novel content? 

# 12 Tailgate water coloring

12. Tailgate water coloring – Paint what you see as the sun goes down! There’s an overlook parking lot at Chatfield State Park known for its romantic vibes. 

bird watchers
#13 Love-birding

13. Love-birding – Like birding, but with your partner. Barr Lake State Park boasts a beautiful wildlife refuge, and is home to Bald Eagles! 

Ice skating
#14 Ice skating

14. Ice skating – This is the only acceptable 90’s rom-com association we’ll endorse. Always verify conditions prior to jumping out onto the ice, but Jackson Lake State Park is a great spot. 

#15 Geocaching

15. Geocaching – Hardly anyone takes us up on this- if you didn’t already know, Boyd Lake State Park is home to quite a few locations, just saying. 

    Want to go it alone?

    Fat Tire Bike

    1. Fat Tire biking – Who really talks to other people on a bike ride anyway? Reserve a Fat-Tire bike for free at Stagecoach State Park 

    2. Park Hopping – Turn up your favorite songs and traverse the windy roads! (Trust us, it’ll feel like you’re in a movie)

    3. Love-Birding – You can love birds and not be in a relationship. Check out Roxborough State Park for a magical experience. 

    4. Glamping – More room for you! Try out Trinidad Lake State Park. 

    5. Photography trips – Tripods and selfie-sticks were invented for a reason, folks. Eldorado Canyon State Park gets a lot of attention, and it’s no wonder!

        Did you try out any of these dates? Tag us in your photos from date night on social media @Coparkswildlife and show us how you Live Life Outside!

        live life outside logo

        Written by Devan Walsh. Devan is a Digital Communications Specialist with Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

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