Know BEFORE you go

CoTrex Trail ReportsPlan to arrive before 9 a.m. or after 3 p.m. as the open space will likely reach capacity, especially on weekends in the summer.Check  Colorado Trail Explorer (COTREX) at for the most up-to-date trail conditions, closures, and alerts. Or check under the "Trails & Weather" tab below.

Adjacent to Pinewood Reservoir

The 177-acre Ramsay-Shockey Open Space has a four-mile natural surface trail. Hikers and mountain bikers can enjoy extraordinary vistas of the surrounding valley in a peaceful ponderosa-pine-forest and open-meadow setting. A ¼-mile wheelchair-accessible boardwalk starts at Pinewood Reservoir's Blue Mountain Trailhead.

This open space was purchased in 1997 to protect important wildlife habitat, provide a buffer to Pinewood Reservoir, and expand recreational activities. An interpretive brochure, available at the trailhead, corresponds to numbered stops along trails and teaches about native flora, abundant fauna, outstanding geology, and the remarkable history of this area.

Ramsay-Shockey Open Space requires entrance permits, is open year-round from sunrise to sunset, and is located next to Pinewood Reservoir, southwest of Loveland, Colorado, and northwest of Berthoud, Colorado.



Drinking Water
Permit Required
Picnic Area



From Denver:

  1. Take I-25 North to the Berthoud Exit (Exit 250).
  2. Turn left (west) onto Highway 56 and continue for 9 1/2 miles. (You will pass through the town of Berthoud.)
  3. Watch for the Carter Lake road sign after a sharp curve to the north (right).
  4. Turn left (west) onto County Road 8E and continue for 3 miles.
  5. Stop at the entrance station to purchase Park Entrance Permits, Follow County Road 8E west to the intersection about halfway up the hill. A sign will direct you to continue straight to the South Shore Campground or to turn right to Carter Knolls Campground, the swim beach, Big Thompson Campground, Carter Lake Marina, Eagle Campground, Lowell's Campground and North Pines Campground. The Natural Resources Department is located about 2 miles north of Carter Lake at 1800 South County Road 31.

From Longmont or Boulder:

  1. Take U.S. Highway 287 north to County Road 56 west of Berthoud.
  2. Turn left (west) onto County Road 56.

    Follow direction from # 3 above

From Loveland:

  1. Drive west of Loveland on U.S. Highway 34 to mile marker #85. Watch for the "Carter Lake" sign.
  2. Turn left (south) onto County Road 29. Go 2 miles and turn right (west) onto County Road 18E. Go west another 2 miles. Watch for the park signs.
  3. At County Road 31 turn left and stop to purchase park entrance permits at the entrance station on your right or at The Natural Resources Department. Continue south on County Road 31 another 2 miles to Carter Lake, campgrounds, marina, and swim beach.

From Fort Collins:

  1. Take Taft Hill Road south from Fort Collins to U.S. Highway 34 (Eisenhower) in Loveland and turn right (west).

    Follow directions from Loveland above.