Gazebo Boardwalk Trail, Barr Lake State Park, Boulder - Denver - Golden - Fort Collins - Lyons, Colorado

Gazebo Boardwalk Trail - 3.1 miles

Barr Lake State Park

Winter is the best time to see raptors at Barr Lake State Park

Winter is the best time to see raptors at Barr Lake State Park

Round-Trip Length: 3.1 miles
Start-End Elevation: 5,130' - 5,130'
Elevation Change: no elevation gain
Skill Level: Easy
Dogs Allowed: No
Bikes Allowed: No
Horses Allowed: No
Related Trails:

Gazebo Boardwalk Trail - 3.1 Miles Round-Trip

Barr Lake State Park is located in Brighton, CO, northeast of downtown Denver in Colorado's eastern plains. Barr Lake attracts over 350 migratory and resident avian species including white pelicans, great blue herons, cormorants, egrets, bald eagles, golden eagles and several types of hawks and falcons.

Trail Map | Photo Gallery

Barr Lake is also home to coyote, badger, fox, rabbit, mule deer and white tail deer - one of few places in the Denver front range where these two commingle.

The Gazebo Boardwalk Trail follows a flat, packed dirt fire road around the south side of Barr Lake, a designated wilderness refuge. Boating and fishing are not permitted in this area.

The unmarked trailhead is located next to the Barr Lake Nature Center in the south parking lot of the park. It features a wildlife observation blind at .75 miles, and boardwalks along the shore at 1.3 miles with views of a permanent bald eagle's nest just west of a Gazebo near the trail's end.

Facebook Comments

Interactive GPS Topo Map

Key GPS Coordinates - DATUM WGS84

  • N39 56.288 W104 45.129 — Nature Center Trailhead

Worth Noting

  • Barr Lake State Park is the headquarters of the Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory.

  • Before settlement, Barr Lake was a deflation basin used by buffalo as a wallow. In the 1880s a dam was built on its north side, and water was diverted from the South Platte River to fill the newly formed Oasis Reservoir. After years of degradation, a massive flood in 1965 diluted pollution and gave the state a chance to restore its natural purity and habitat. The state of Colorado purchased surrounding lands in 1975 and designated it a State Park.

Camping and Backpacking Information

  • Camping and backpacking is not permitted at Barr Lake State Park.

Fishing Information

  • Fishing is permitted in designated areas at Barr Lake State Park. A valid Colorado fishing license is required.

  • You may fish from the shore or registered small boat on the north side of Barr Lake. Fishing is not permitted in the Wildlife Refuge or from the Barr Lake Dam.

  • Rainbow trout, walleye, small and large-mouth bass, channel catfish, bluegill, wiper and tiger muskie are among species that have been stocked at Barr Lake by the Colorado Division of Wildlife. Review the current Colorado Fishing Regulations for special restrictions.

Rules and Regulations

  • There is a $7 fee to enter Barr Lake State Park.
  • Dogs are permitted at Barr Lake State Park, but restricted to certain areas. Dogs must be leashed at all times. Dogs are not permitted in the Wildlife Refuge located within the southern half of the lake.

  • Horses, bicycles, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are permitted on the Lake Perimeter Trail.

  • Horses are not permitted on the Crest Trail (the dam); an alternative passage runs just below it to the north.

  • Swimming is not permitted at Barr Lake State Park.

  • Waterfowl hunting is permitted during legal waterfowl seasons and only on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Hunting is restricted to blinds located north of the dam, and registration is required. Reservations can be made between 2 days and 2 weeks in advance of the hunting date. Contact the park office for current hunting restrictions and information. No other hunting or trapping is permitted in the park.

Directions to Trailhead

Barr Lake State Park is located in Brighton, Colorado, just northeast of downtown Denver.

From E-470
Take Exit 34 (120th Ave) and travel .5 miles east to Tower Road. Turn left on Tower Road and follow it 3.0 miles to Picadilly Road (note that Tower Road will bend and seamlessly become 128th). Make a left on Picadilly Road and follow it 1.1 miles to the Barr Lake State Park entrance on the left.

From Denver
Take I-76 northeast, exit on Bromley Lane. Go east to Picadilly Road, then south to the park entrance.

Contact Information

Barr Lake State Park and Wildlife Refuge
13401 Picadilly Road
Brighton, CO 80603
Phone: 303.659.6005

Office Hours: 9AM - 4PM Wed - Sat, and 11AM - 4 PM Sun. Closed Mon and Tues
Park Hours: 5AM - 10PM

Rocky Mountain Bird Observarory

Trip Reports

There are no trip reports on this trail.


No one has written any comments


Add Comment

Only used to identify you to ProTrails. Will not show on comments list.
Tell us when your experience with this trail happened.