Know Before You Go

  • Plan Ahead

    Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland managers work to help visitors have safe and enjoyable outdoor experiences while protecting wildlife, clean water and healthy forests. This page will help you “Know Before You Go” about items Forests and Grassland visitors should always consider when making plans to visit public lands.

What's the latest?

Plan Your Visit!


  • Check road status. High elevation roads often don't open until mid-summer.

  • CoTrip  has information on state roads, including interactive maps.

  • Have a map! Downloading maps within the Avenza App is an easy way to do this. You can also buy maps online.

    • Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs) are the primary tool to determine where you can drive on the Forests and Grassland. They are available for free on the Avenza App.


  • CoTrex is a great resource for information on trails throughout Colorado.

  • Find Forest Service trail information on our recreation page.

  • Stick to Trails. Walk through snow and mud.

    • ‚ÄčWear appropriate footwear for wet conditions.

    • Avoid stepping on vegetation if you need to step off-trail to let others pass. 

    • Step back on trail immediately after people pass you.


Passes and Fees

Have a backup plan

  • Have an alternate plan in case the parking lot is full.

  • Parks and trails are generally less crowded on weekdays. Trailhead parking lots are often full early in the morning on weekends. 

  • Rangers will issue tickets for illegally parked vehicles.

Trash the Trash

  • Pack it in, pack it out. Or pick it up to leave a place better than you found it.

  • Put litter, dog poo bags, even crumbs, peels and cores in your nearest waste/recycling bin.

  • NOTE: Most Forest Service trailheads don't have trash cans. Plan to bring dog poop bags to your trash can at home.

Be Careful with Fire

Keep Wildlife Wild 

Be Prepared

  • Colorado's weather is unpredictable and can change quickly. Make sure to bring food and water. Wear appropriate clothing and shoes for cold or wet weather.

Know the Rules!