A mountain lion has recently been spotted at the Environmental Learning Center. Though uncommon at the Environmental Learning Center, mountain lions are a natural part of the ecosystem.
Please visit this website for more information about mountain lions. Human visitors need to take precautions around mountain lions including:
- Visit in groups
- Never approach any wild animal
- If you spot a mountain lion, pick up small children
- Stay calm and stop or back away slowly
- Do everything you can to appear larger
- If a mountain lion attacks, fight back
Colorado Parks and Wildlife is responsible for managing and protecting wildlife; please report any mountain lion sightings to the CPW Fort Collins office at 970-472-4300.
Please do not drink the water from the water spigot on site; the water has low chlorine levels at this time. Please plan ahead and pack plenty of drinking water for your visit.
Our trails are currently open. Our restroom and picnic shelter are open.
We urge all visitors to abide by current health guidelines:
- Maintain at least 6 feet of distance between individuals who don’t live together
- Group size under 10 people
- Avoid congregating at trailheads
- Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
- Stay home if you feel sick
Larimer County has put together some great reminders for getting outside during COVID-19.
Please check the following websites for the most up to date information about the outbreak and how to prevent the spread of disease: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Larimer County Health Department and Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
Hours and General Information
The Environmental Learning Center property is open every day, sunrise to sunset, free of charge. For directions to our location, scroll down. Our 212-acre property offers visitors the opportunity to explore four distinct ecosystems: riparian, cottonwood forest, wetland and grassland. Read below for more information to plan your visit to the Environmental Learning Center (ELC).
According to current health guidelines, please limit group size to 10 people.
There is one vault toilet on site.
There are four covered picnic tables near the parking lot. These are available on a first come, first served basis.
The Wilcox trail is approximately 1.2 miles long and the Alden trail is approximately 0.6 miles long. Both trails travel through several different ecosystems, and there are benches and interpretive signs along both trails. Please note, dogs and bikes are not permitted on our trails.
From Fort Collins
Head east on Drake Road. Approximately one mile after passing the intersection at Timberline Road, turn left on Environmental Drive. After crossing a one lane bridge, take a sharp left on the gravel road (you will see the ELC sign), crossing the railroad tracks. Parking lot is at the end of the gravel road. Programs meet near the parking lot, at the amphitheater.
Take the Harmony Road exit. Head west on Harmony for approximately two miles, to Ziegler Road. Turn right (north) on Ziegler. You will go through a light and a roundabout, continuing north. Take a right on Environmental Drive. After crossing a one lane bridge, take a sharp left on the gravel road (you will see the ELC sign), crossing the railroad tracks. Parking lot is at the end of the gravel road. Programs meet near the parking lot, at the amphitheater.
Rules and Regulations
- Dogs and bikes are not permitted on our trails
- No overnight usage
- No campfires
- Catching and releasing of wildlife is not permitted on our property
- Fishing is permitted with the appropriate state fishing license
- The sale and use of tobacco products, vaping, and e-cigarettes are prohibited on all grounds owned or leased by the state of Colorado