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Natural Areas

Cathy Fromme Prairie Natural Area

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Trail Status

Open without issues.


Cathy Fromme Prairie is a rare example of Fort Collins pre-settlement shortgrass prairie landscape. Drylands and wetlands here provide habitat to a variety of plants and animals. Look for horned lizards, ground-nesting songbirds, butterflies, rabbits, coyotes and rattlesnakes. The raptor observatory, built into the hillside near the Shields Street entrance, is an excellent place from which to watch hawks and eagles, especially in winter.



The paved Fossil Creek Trail (between Shields Street and Luther Lane) is 2.4 miles one-way. Visitors can continue northwest on the Fossil Creek Trail to connect Cathy Fromme Prairie to Spring Canyon Park and Pineridge Natural Area. View the trail map


5:00 a.m. 11:00 p.m.


There are parking lots at Shields Street (south of Harmony, approximate address is 5381 South Shields Street, Fort Collins) or Fromme Prairie Way (from Harmony take Seneca south to Fromme Prairie Way, approximate address is 1999 Fromme Prairie Way, Fort Collins). One horse trailer parking spot is designated in the Fromme Prairie Way parking lot.

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 in the upper right-hand corner of this page.
  • Customized free educational programs at Cathy Fromme Prairie Natural Area are available for groups, call the Master Naturalist Program at 970-224-6118 or email c2tlbm5leUBmY2dvdi5jb20=.

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