Bluff Lake Nature Center

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Bluff Lake Nature Center is a nonprofit agency that owns and manages a unique urban wildlife refuge and outdoor classroom in Denver. The refuge is home to an abundance of animals and native plants, which thrive in a variety of habitats. Bluff Lake is Denver’s largest open space managed as native habitat, and Denver’s only nonprofit nature center. We rely solely on community support.

Each year, nearly 5,000 area elementary students visit Bluff Lake as part of our mission to “share our unique urban natural area and inspire environmental connectedness and stewardship through experiential education, environmental engagement, and natural area preservation and restoration.”

Thousands of visitors come to Bluff Lake each year to enjoy a few moments of solace and connection to nature. We hope you’ll join us soon!



October 29
Boo on the Bluff
10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

November 5
Bird Walk
8 a.m.


Boo on the Bluff is Back for 2016!

Layout 1Please join us for a morning of fun Halloween crafts, encounters with nature, and lots of other games and activities at Boo on the Bluff, Saturday, Oct. 29, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Cost is $2 per person, with all proceeds benefiting Bluff Lake. Costumes encouraged for kids and adults!

Partners this year include Morrison Nature Center, Star K Ranch, The Butterfly Pavilion, Nature’s Educators, Majestic View Nature Center, Dinosaur Ridge, and Four Mile Historic Park. Click here for a flyer.

Big Changes in Store for Bluff Lake

At long last, our Year-Round Lake Project is entering its final stages. Our 132-year-old dam is now reinforced by a 28-foot-deep, 2-foot-wide, 1,100-foot-long slurry wall that will slow leakage significantly. That phase of our work is done.

We’re currently finishing up the dredging and deepening of the lake to a compacted clay layer, which will serve to form a quasi-liner on the bottom. Soon, we’ll be tapping into Denver Water’s recycled water line.

Thanks for your generous support and for your patience while we finish all of this heavy work on site!

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Volunteer Environmental Youth Educators Needed at Bluff Lake

Volunteer Environmental Youth Educators play a key role in fulfilling Bluff Lake’s mission to “foster environmental education and stewardship at Bluff Lake” as leaders in our school science programs. Volunteer Environmental Youth Educators make science fun and meaningful for kids at our nature center and outdoor classroom!

Volunteers introduce groups of schoolchildren to the natural world through hands-on exploration in topics including wetland ecology, habitat diversity, urban wildlife, food chains, and life cycles. Students range in age from ECE-6th grade, and primarily attend Denver and Aurora Public Schools. Through their enthusiasm and guidance, volunteer educators make it possible for each student to experience a meaningful discovery at Bluff Lake.

Science programs are on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings (9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.) throughout the school year. Volunteers are asked to work at least one morning per week.

Volunteers use the program curricula and present it according to established guidelines. Bluff Lake naturalists provide training on the the job and during several education workshops offered throughout the year. No experience is necessary.

Please contact Fran at to learn more.

Bluff Lake Trails Abound!

Despite our small size, Bluff Lake has two miles of trails, including a main trail that loops around our lake that is slightly over a mile. We also have shorter trails that are spurs off the main trail, including our “Creek Trail,” which takes you along the south edges of Sand Creek; and ADA trail that leads from our parking lot down to the main trail, and a spur trail which heads east from the bottom of the stairs toward City of Aurora Open Space. Feel free to walk, run, watch birds, take pictures, or just enjoy yourself on any of these trails!

Senior Project Video About Bluff Lake!

connery scott copyCheck out this video about Bluff Lake made entirely by Connery Scott, a DSST (Denver School of Science and Technology) student, for his senior project. A nature lover, he is raising awareness about, and raising funds for, BLNC. To contribute to his project, go to, select Bluff Lake Nature Center, and then “Connery Scott–DSST” in the drop down menu to select how to direct the donation.


As a nonprofit organization, Bluff Lake relies entirely upon the financial support of the community to continue to provide our ever-growing list of programming and educational opportunities. We are truly grateful for the support of many organizations and individuals. Visit our Financial Supporters page for a complete list.

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Interested in hosting a wedding, party, or other event at BLNC? We regularly rent out the site for special events, and provide staff support if needed. Inquire about renting BLNC by emailing Jeff Lamontagne at


Bluff Lake Nature Center is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. All donations are 100% tax deductible.