The Noorda Family Adventures
The Noorda family was second in finishing their quest to visit every Colorado State Park.
“We wanted to visit all the state parks but we are very limited on time so we were just hitting the ones close to us. Then the Passport Program came out and it was that little extra incentive to finally get them all,” Todd Noorda said.
The family completed the first 13 parks in six weeks and visited an impressive 25 parks the weekend of Aug. 21 — the couple's anniversary.
"We finished up with State Forest on Aug. 24 and I can't imagine a better way for us to celebrate our 24th wedding anniversary. We had such a good time doing this," Lisa Noorda said.
The family was most surprised by John Martin Reservoir.
“When we first drove in, we were thinking we’d just get the stamp and go. But one of the rangers was just phenomenal and actually took us back in to look at the petroglyphs; that really impressed us," Lisa said.
It was a "serious toss up" for the family, naming a favorite park. They liked Mueller State Park because of the location and St. Vrain State Park because they visit it most frequently. Steamboat Lake State Park tops the list, because of its scenery.
“We only visited Steamboat once and we’re definitely thinking about going there again. We got up in the morning with the mist covering the water—it was just absolutely beautiful,” Todd said.
The Noordas offer tips for other travelers:
“Planning is something that needs to be done well. There’s so many out-and-backs where you have to drive out of a park and then drive back to a main street. Other than that, it’s just do it,” Todd said.
“When you go and visit these places, you can’t go there with a preconceived notion. Because you see the pictures on the Web site, and some of them just don’t do the park justice. We had fun.”