Our Outdoor Places

Deer laying in snow looking at camera

Natural areas and trails offer wonderful benefits to the people who live, work and play in Greeley. Everyone has a part to play in caring for these beautiful places. Click through the topics below to learn more about natural areas and how you can help.

Natural Areas & Trails is responsible for the care and stewardship of over 2,000 acres of natural areas. We are careful to manage Greeley's natural areas in a way that promotes biodiversity and increases ecosystem health. A few ways we do this include:

  • Mow grasses along the trail to 11 inches to retain moisture in plants, helping native grasses thrive.
  • Targeted mowing elsewhere on natural areas to maintain health food and habitat for wildlife.
  • Use native species in restoration work; these plants are well suited to this environment.
  • Move at nature's pace; native grasses can take 3-5 years to establish, so we need to be patient.
  • Responsibly control noxious weeds; herbicide is part of a holistic program to restore ecosystem health.


You can help us care for these natural places! When you visit natural areas please...

  • Stay on the trail to protect these beautiful places.
  • Pick up your pet's waste to prevent disease causing bacteria from spreading in the ecosystem.
  • Practice Play Clean Go principles by checking shoes and pets for seeds. Remove seeds before and after visiting a natural area to reduce the spread of noxious weeds.


You can also help us out at home, please...

  • Do not dump yard waste or trash in natural areas. Yard waste can spread weeds and unwanted chemicals. Trash belongs in the dump. Grass clippings, tree limbs and leaves can be taken to Greeley Organic Waste.
  • Do not mow in natural areas. Mowing native species allows weeds to take over.
  • Do not spray chemicals in natural areas. Unauthorized spraying disrupts restoration efforts and exposes you and wildlife to chemicals.
  • Know where your property line is before building a fence or doing other work on your property. Work with a surveyor to confirm your property line.
  • If you need to access your property through a natural area, fill out a temporary access permit request. It can take up to 30 days for these requests to be processed, so plan ahead.

Did You Know?

Curious about something you saw or heard about in Greeley's natural areas? Check out the information below! These posts offer information on questions or concerns raised by visitors and neighbors to natural areas. Explore the topics below to learn more about these community assets.

  • Grazing helps keep noxious weeds in check and allows native grasses to re-populate the landscape. Short-duration, intensive grazing is particularly effective at noxious weed control.
  • Hoof action by livestock breaks down dead grass material (known as thatch) that sits on top of the soil. This process aerates the soil underneath and improves soil quality.

Click here to learn more about grazing in natural areas.

  • Beavers are a natural part of Colorado ecosystems.
  • Beavers are fascinating creatures. They are rodents, which means they have large front teeth that never stop growing.
  • Beavers are ecosystem engineers, they can change an ecosystem to suit their needs. Their changes also benefit many other plant and animal species.

Click here for more information about beavers.

Use COTREX to check trail status and choose your next visit.