3rd Grade Nature Knowledge Days
Nature Knowledge Days introduces students to our public lands through fun exploration of the natural world and human interactions with it. This half-day event targets third grade history and science standards and is held in the spring at the Escalante boat ramp in Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area and is hosted by Colorado Canyons Association and partnering organizations.
K-3rd Learn to Bike
Designed for elementary students in K-3rd grade, this brand new program (in 2020) helps students build confidence on bikes and teaches stewardship of our trails. The Nature Connection staff and volunteers will bring a trailer full of bikes to a participating school and offer instruction to students during PE class.
Skis for Kids
Skis for Kids provides youth with a cross-country skiing experience on their public land. The Nature Connection partners with the United States Forest Service to provide youth with an Every Kid in a Park pass as well as Junior Snow Ranger booklets. Winter wildlife and their adaptations are introduced as well as how to ‘dress like an onion’ while preparing for a day outdoors in the wintertime. At almost 11,000 feet on top of the Grand Mesa, youth learn to fall and get back up again on xc skis — in return they ‘grow their grit’.
National Public Lands Day
Every Kid in a Park at Lost Lake celebrates National Public Lands Day with the USFS and partners such as WSCC, The Nature Connection, IAWC. Students build bird boxes, hang with Smokey, learn about geology, wilderness and how to use a compass.
Conservation Days is an outdoor experience for all 4th graders with our partner Western Slope Conservation Center and others at the Paonia River Park.
Explore Your Park
Explore Your Park involves a visit to either Sweitzer Lake State Park or Crawford State Park. Students get to experience canoeing, stand-up paddleboarding, archery and fishing.
Cottonwood Days is a day-long event for 6th graders across the western slope to learn about the vital waterways that shape our landscape. Students learn to tie flies, handle native fish, collect invertebrates, and much more in this seriously fun event targeting art, history, and science standards. Hosted by Colorado Canyons Association and partnering organizations
Winter Ecology Days
Winter Ecology Days is a day-long event cross-country skiing on the Grand Mesa National Forest. Lessons are taught by professionals from Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the United States Forest Service. The day is relative to science standards with hands-on watershed and snow studies, avalanche basics, along with winter ecology topics. Following a pre-trip classroom discussion, students are provided with a second opportunity to learn and ski in the winter as a school-based program through The Nature Connection.
Escalante Field Experience
From seeing dinosaur tracks to learning how wildlife biologists study animals, students will understand the deep natural history of Escalante Canyon. This educational experience is targeted at 7th grade history and science standards and is hosted by Colorado Canyons Association and partnering organizations
Solar Energy International provides a hands-on outdoor solar lab experience targeting topics on energy conservation & human impact on the environment. Students will become excited to learn how to capture the energy of the sun!
Youth Outdoor Network
Students in all five grant area High Schools are provided with the opportunity to learn about careers in the outdoors. The students participate in stewardship projects with partners such as the Bureau of Land Management, US Forest Service, Colorado Canyons Association and Western Slope Conservation Center.
Students are able to explore the Gunnison Gorge, Escalante Canyon and Ruby Horsethief Canyon on single day or multi day raft trips. These trips happen in the spring and fall and are available for all students participating in their High School’s Youth Outdoor Network.
Cross-Country Ski Day
Our five high schools join together for a winter adventure on their national forest. Students are challenged to ski in different terrain on groomed nordic tracks. They also build their knowledge on avalanche safety from a professional, test the snowpack and understand how interconnected they are to the local landscape.
Mountain Bike Clubs and Teams
Stay tuned to learn more about the High School Mountain Bike Clubs and Teams.
Programs for all ages:
SKI FIELD TRIP
BIKE FIELD TRIP