6 Best Things To Do Outdoors Near Loveland, CO
North of Denver, Colorado, you’ll find the municipality of Loveland. This is a large town with a dense suburban feel and 77,000 residents, known alternately as “The Gateway to the Rockies” and the “Sweetheart City.” There’s a lot to do here, including plenty of shopping, dining, museum and gallery viewing, and the Annual Cherry Pie Festival.
Here are six outdoor spots you should spend some time at whether you live in Loveland or are just visiting.
Benson Sculpture Garden
Take a walk through this gorgeous outdoor garden and marvel at the art on these 10 acres of land. Benson Sculpture Garden is filled with 172 lifesize sculptures by top artists. Tens of thousands of visitors visit annually. You can find photographs of the various sculptures on Google, but there’s nothing like checking them out in person.
The garden is open year-round. Head over with an umbrella while it’s raining, or bring a picnic when it’s sunny. It’s free to visit.
Devil’s Backbone Open Space
With high, yellow rocks, rolling grasslands, and lots of fresh air, Devil’s Backbone Open Space is a wonderful place to enjoy outdoor activities. Take a walk or go running along a wildflower-lined path, watch the red-tailed hawks, have a picnic, and take photographs of the expansive scenery.
If you’re into mountain biking, this 3,007-acre area provides you room to enjoy the hobby, whether you’re a newbie or experienced. Devil’s Backbone has mountain bike activities for those just getting started, and more challenging ones for the rest.
Boyd Lake State Park
Boyd Lake is a huge state park where visitors enjoy biking, boating, hiking, swimming, fishing, and camping.
Entry requires a daily park pass, so bring cash or card. The park is open Wednesday through Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., closed Mondays and Tuesdays, and offers overnight camping. Check the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website to determine campsite availability and to make a reservation. The park has a fun playground, but call or check the website, as it may be closed sometimes due to COVID.
This 64-acre park is a fantastic place to take your kids. They’ll enjoy the playground the most; it includes a treehouse play structure with a swing bridge, a kids’ climbing wall, a waterfall (from Memorial Day through Labor Day), a stream with bridges, log tunnels, and a whole lot more.
Other things you can all enjoy in the park include mosaic artwork, a picnic knoll, three multi-purpose sports fields, tennis and pickleball courts, a skate park, an arboretum, a recreation trail, a dog park, and a 9-hole disc golf course.
North Lake Park and Lake Loveland
Another magnificent park to visit is North Lake Park, which includes a body of water called Lake Loveland. The park has four shelters that you can reserve and which include grills, multiple long tables, lights, plenty of seating, and electric outlets. These are perfect to throw events for up to 100 people.
You’ll also find an amphitheater, a seasonal train, an old schoolhouse, two playgrounds, sports fields, restrooms, a horseshoe court, and more.
The lake is there for community enjoyment, but not for boating, though fishing is encouraged. There is also a beach area for swimmers.
Carter Lake is a 1,100-acre reservoir with 1,000 acres of natural, public land around it, and 118 campsites. The entrance permit is $9 per vehicle or $18 per vehicle & boat, and we recommend getting there early on weekends if you want a chance to grab a camping spot.
Features for visitors include picnic areas, pavilions, swimming areas, a fishing pier, and plenty of hiking trails. Plus, there are restrooms available when you need them. In the summer, a lot of people come here to enjoy boating, sailboarding, and water skiing. Launch onto the lake off one of the three boat ramps. Keep in mind that they will inspect your boat for invasive species.
One trail you’ll enjoy is the Sundance Trail. This is meant for hikers, horseback riders, and bikers. You can even walk your dog here. Just keep them on their leash.
If you live in the area and need somewhere to store camping equipment, skiing gear, other personal items, or business paperwork and inventory, we have you covered at Lockaway Storage in Loveland.