Colorado Parks and Wildlife has started to promote the Keep Colorado Wild Pass. How does it work? |

Colorado Parks and Wildlife has started to promote the Keep Colorado Wild Pass. How does it work?

Colorado Parks and Wildlife has begun outreach to let Coloradans know about its new Keep Colorado Wild Pass for state parks as it gets closer to its unveiling in 2023.

In March, the Parks and Wildlife Commission approved a $29 price point for the pass, and funding from the pass goes toward initiatives for protecting wildlife habitats, search and rescue programs, avalanche awareness education and outdoor equity learning programs. Passes can be used to get into any state park in Colorado. 

The Keep Colorado Wild Pass, created by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, allows holders to enter any state park such as Sylvan Lake, pictured here.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife/Courtesy photo

“With that price point approved, we could begin working with the Department of Revenue and (software company) Aspira on the IT programming side of things,” Katie Lanter, policy and planning supervisor for Parks and Wildlife, said. “We also developed our marketing materials, and we also began working with Upstream Consulting about publishing engagement outreach to disproportionately impacted communities.”

How do I get one?

Currently, the only way to get a pass would be during vehicle registration starting in 2023. A fee of $29 will be added to each vehicle registration through the Department of Motor Vehicles unless the owner opts out. Residents can decline the pass when registering a vehicle with the DMV online, through a kiosk, by mail or by notifying a customer service representative in offices.​

Keep Colorado Wild Passes are not transferable between vehicles and are linked to the vehicle license plate and registration card. 

To use the pass, s​​how your vehicle registration card that shows your purchase to the Parks and Wildlife staff at any staffed entrance station. If the entrance is not staffed, you may enter the park with the knowledge that you may be checked for proof of purchase while in the park.

Val Nosler Beck, founder of Upstream Consulting (who worked with Parks and Wildlife on conducting public outreach) said that Parks and Wildlife leaders are working to engage underserved communities. This included working with family resource centers and other groups to gather ways to communicate information about how to best advertise the passes. 

“We wanted to reach communities who are not always receiving this information,” Beck said. 

What’s new? 

On Thursday, the Commission approved several updates to the pass. The first is that because the pass is available on the Department of Motor Vehicle registration card, it does not have to be presented in the window of the car like other passes.

There is also an option also added for the pass to be shown in a division-sponsored mobile app. A free pass has also been added with the purchase of any military fee-exempt plate.

The third change clarifies that all state park and recreation areas require a visitor who enters without a motor vehicle to purchase a pass except at exempt parks, and with the receipt for any annual pass or a copy of the individual’s vehicle registration with the Keep Colorado Wild Pass can be used as a non-motor vehicle annual pass. 

“(Another change) creates a non-motor vehicle individual annual pass priced at $29 and clarifies that up to four people, ages 15 and older, may access the park with the non-motor vehicle individual annual pass,” Hilary Hernandez, regulations manager for Parks and Wildlife, said. 

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