Colorado Springs, CO

Stratton Open Space Reservoir Is a Fun Water Park for Dogs

Colorado Jill
Image by Chiemsee2016 from Pixabay

(Colorado Springs, CO) It's refreshing to jump into the water on a hot day, especially if you have been hiking in a fur coat. The reservoir at Stratton Open Space in southwest Colorado Springs is the perfect place for dogs to cool off after a walk.

The fenced reservoir is a clean area with water, a sandy beach, a few shade trees, and amazing views. This spot is just for dogs with no fishing or human swimming allowed.
Photo by the author

Stratton Open Space is 318 acres of well-maintained, hard-packed trails that are clearly marked. The reservoir is a short mile or two hike (depending on the route you select) from the small sixteen-space parking lot.

The lot can get crowded on the weekends, and there is no parking along the road. There are flushing toilets, trash receptacles, and pet waste bags near the trailhead.

The open space welcomes hikers, bike riders (no e-bikes), and horseback riding, although some trails are for hikers only.
Photo by the author

The trails weave through forests and open grasslands that provide varying shade, so it's best to carry water for yourself and your dog for the hike up and back. Dogs must remain on leash until they are inside the fenced area of the reservoir. As you approach the area, you will see the grassy face of the dam and the chain link fence.
Chainlink fence around the Stratton Open Space ReservoirPhoto by the author

Follow the dirt trail until you reach the fence opening. There are no restrooms or drinking water at the reservoir, but there is a trash receptacle for cleaning up after your pet and lots of space for dogs to run and play.
Stratton Open Space Reservoir on a quiet Tuesday morningPhoto by the author

My dog loves hiking to the reservoir and always leaves as a happy, tired pup. I'll see you there!
Molly at Stratton Open Space ReservoirPhoto by the author
  • Location: Stratton Open Space parking lot is just south of Cheyenne Mountain High School (1200 Cresta Road) on LaVeta Way. Drive west on LaVeta Way to the parking lot.
  • Hours: Stratton Open Space is open from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. from May 1st through October 31st. From November 1st through April 30th, the hours are 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. The gates are locked when the area is closed.
  • The open space and reservoir are lovely places, so please remember to leave no trace of your visit.

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Jill is based in Colorado and writes about hidden gems, history, the great outdoors, and local events.

Colorado Springs, CO

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