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Colorado state parks have some of the most unique and varying landscapes in the country. In these parks, you will find mountains, meadows, lakes, ponds, granite cliffs, waterfalls, sandstone caves, and raging rivers. Visitors enjoy boating, fishing, camping, hiking, and panning for gold. Some even offer plenty of opportunities to get outside in the winter. Venture out in the cold weather to ice fish, snowboard, cross-country ski, sled, or snowshoe. Some parks even offer camping year-round while others are day use only.

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1. Castlewood Canyon State Park

Located just southeast of Denver, Castlewood Canyon State Park is the perfect place for a daytime escape. It features various hiking trails ranging from a half-mile to four miles as well as opportunities for rock climbing for all skill levels. Cherry Creek winds through the canyon providing a great place to stop and take some pictures during hikes. One of the most interesting things to see here is the ruins of the Castlewood Dam which burst in 1933. Guests also enjoy birding, horseback riding, and picnicking.

Jeremy Janus / Getty Images
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