Lathrop State Park is a great place to camp, play, hike, bike, boat, fish and watch birds and other wildlife. The park is west of the town of Walsenburg. They have wonderful camping. If you want the pure camping experience they have an area for that. If you want to take a trailer or other RV, they have electrical hook-ups in another campground. There’s water posts where you can fill up your tank and they have a dump station. In loop C there are some stunning views of Spanish Peaks with the lake in the foreground. We camped in site C68 this trip. Other times we camped in D loop for a view of the hogback ridge and the Sangre de Christo mountains. If you have an annual pass, it's only 20 dollars per night.
We recommend the hogback trail. It’s perhaps three miles around the loop and offers some great scenery. It’s not strenuous but there is an uphill grade. Take your camera as there are some nice views. And be sure to pick up the brochure for the trail at the visitor center. It’s free and gives you a little more information about what you’re seeing. It’s well written.
There’s a path that goes around Martin lake. It’s a bit rough for bikes unless you have really good suspension.
In the evening, take a leisurely drive around both lakes and stop at the coves to watch the osprey fish. You’re likely to see deer as well if you drive slowly and watch for them. Then park on the dam and watch the sunset. Check out the night skies while you’re here. You won’t believe how many stars you can see.
When you want to go into town, we recommend the charming little town of La Veta. There’s a great bakery, but it’s only open Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday so plan accordingly. And stop by the Forest Service visitor center if you plan to do some serious recreating in the area.
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