In the past, Butterfly Woods was a small-fruit agricultural area, and it is gradually being restored to a natural riparian (riverside) forest and upland. The most popular way to visit is by bicycling or walking on the paved Poudre River Trail. Butterfly Woods is east of the unique pedestrian bridge over the Poudre River near Overland Trail Road. Visitors may see squirrels, foxes, raccoons, mule deer, mourning doves and woodpeckers. This natural area is home to the two-spotted skipper and the smokey-eyed brown butterfly both rare species whose habitat is protected by the on-trail only policy.
0.4 miles of the paved Poudre River Trail (wheelchair accessible)
5:00 a.m. 11:00 p.m.
Butterfly Woods is along the Poudre River Trail about mile east of Lions Open Space (managed by Larimer County Natural Resources). The nearest parking lot is at Lions Open Space on North Overland Trail Rd. Butterfly Woods' approximate address is 2218 North Overland Trail Road, Fort Collins.
Events and Activities
- Free educational activities and events in June-October are listed in the Tracks & Trails booklet guide.
- Last minute activity additions, trail recommendations and events offered between November-May are in our free monthly electronic newsletter- sign up on this page.
- Customized free educational programs at Butterfly Woods Natural Area are available for groups, call the Master Naturalist Program at 970-224-6118 or email YWNobGVibmlrQGZjZ292LmNvbQ==.
- Know before you go safety and recreation information.
- Plant List for Butterfly Woods Natural Area. Volunteers were critical in making the list possible, thank you! Questions or list additions? Please email Y3N0cm91c2VAZmNnb3YuY29t .
- Butterfly Woods is adopted by No Laporte Gravel, thank you! By picking up litter, volunteer adopters enhance habitat for wildlife and native plants while increasing fellow visitors' enjoyment.
- Poudre River Natural Areas Management Plan