Give Back: Bluff Lake Nature Center

Bluff Lake needs you to enjoy and help preserve its wildlife refuge!

Located on the eastern tip of Stapleton and the namesake of the Bluff Lake neighborhood in Stapleton, Bluff Lake Nature Center (BLNC) is a private, nonprofit, urban wildlife refuge. BLNC is a gem not simply because it is 123 acres of open space in Stapleton’s midst, but because of the unusually diverse variety of habitats compacted in such a small area: lake, wetlands, riparian area, creek, woods, and classic shortgrass prairie.

What You Can Do At Bluff Lake

Of course, you can walk, jog, or hike our trails…explore Sand Creek, our wetlands, the woods, or do some birdwatching—we have more than 152 species of birds migrating through Bluff Lake!

But we also offer lots of new, fun and educational programs. From new science speaker programs (astronomy, goldmining, raptors!) to geocaching, and parent-preschooler time in nature, you have a wide range of possibilities. Plus, we have our regular school science field trips for nearly 5,000 students each year, fireside chats, and summer camps.

The largest event is in the spring. In partnership with Sand Creek Greenway is our 2nd Annual Race/Walk for Open Space 5K/10K/Half Marathon, and takes place in April – with the finish line next to Bluff Lake itself! It’s a fun run/walk for every member of the family.

There’s lots to do—and learn—for both adults and kids. 

Why No Bikes or Dogs?

Providing community programs while managing a wildlife refuge is a balancing act. The land transfer agreement from the City of Denver mandated that BLNC operate as a “wildlife refuge.” BLNC may plan occasional special events with larger crowds, but we need to limit significant distractions to wildlife in order to keep them safe and wild. That means bikes and dogs would present harmful challenges to our wildlife. Allowing bikes and dogs would transform BLNC into something other than a wildlife refuge. There are plenty of parks for those activities. As stewards of this special land, we at Bluff Lake have a heightened awareness of just how important diverse open space is in urban communities where it is so scarce.

Ways You Can Get Involved

You can support Bluff Lake Nature Center by:

  •          Participating in our community events such as Race for Open Space or Earth Day
  •          Registering your child for Summer Camp
  •          Attending a Fireside Chat with your family
  •          Learning to watercolor or do yoga on the Bluffs in a class
  •          Making a financial contribution
  •          Volunteering at the site
  •          Reminding friends and neighbors to utilize Stapleton’s other trails when out with bikes and dogs.


Come explore 123 Acres of Bluff Lake Nature Center and the unique wildlife refuge right in your neighborhood. 

Get involved today!


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