First Day Hikes hit Colorado State Parks | SummitDaily.com

First Day Hikes hit Colorado State Parks

Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the agency that manages the state's parks and wild animals, again invites Coloradans to get a jump on 2017 by heading outside to take a hike at one of 27 parks on New Year's Day.

The "First Day Hikes" program offers a chance to start the year with some exercise out in nature. Each of the treks will be led by park rangers or volunteers, and many of the planned events will include refreshments and free giveaways including mugs and pens through a grant provided by the Colorado Parks Foundation. The hikes vary in ability level and length and pets are welcome at most.

"Getting outside is the best way to bring in a new year and Colorado state parks showcase all the best things about the outdoors," Crystal Dreiling, Trinidad Lake State Park manager, said in a release. "We are thrilled to have the largest number of state parks hosting First Day Hikes in 2017 since we first started the program in 2012."

Hikes are free, but park visitors must possess a valid parks pass to join. The daily pass for entry to most parks is $7 per vehicle, while annual passes are available for $70. Participants are encouraged to bring snacks and water, dress in layers and be prepared for winter walking in snow or along icy trails. And if there is snow, consider bringing snowshoes.

For more information and a list of participating parks, as well as to check which allow animals, visit the CPW website at: cpw.state.co.us/thingstodo/Pages/First-Day-Hikes.aspx.