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Talking Points, Written Content, Awards

Talking Points

  • COTREX - Colorado’s Official Trails App
  • In furtherance of Colorado the Beautiful’s vision to ensure that every Coloradan lives within 10 minutes of a park, trail or open space, Colorado Parks and Wildlife has built a comprehensive online map of Colorado’s trail network. 
  • The Colorado Trail Explorer (COTREX) connects Colorado residents and visitors to rewarding trail experiences by enabling anyone with a mobile phone or computer to explore over 39,000 miles of recreational trails in the state.
  • The COTREX application is available FOR FREE in the Apple and Google Play Stores, as well as online at https://trails.colorado.gov.
  • COTREX provides access to enjoyable and sustainable outdoor recreational opportunities that educate and inspire current and future generations to serve as active stewards of Colorado’s natural resources.
  • In building COTREX, CPW has put in the palm of your hand data for 39,829 miles of trail and 3,606 trailheads amassed from 236 land managers spread across local, state and federal government agencies. 
  • While there are other user-specific apps available, like MTB project for mountain bikers, COTREX provides a base level of information for all recreational uses that encourages people to get outside and try something new - a new part of Colorado, a new trail, a new experience.  
  • This app will encourage more people to discover and explore their public lands while also building a greater body of data about available recreational opportunities in Colorado. 
  • More than 92% of Coloradans recreate outdoors at least once every few weeks, according to the 2019 Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP).


  • 2018 - Leadership in Government Award - ESRI
    • ESRI awarded former governor John Hickenlooper the Leadership in Government award for encouraging the use of GIS not only for everyday operations, but also for developing enduring innovations like COTREX. (source
  • 2017 - Special Achievement in GIS Award - ESRI
    • CPW received a Special Achievement in GIS Award at the Esri User Conference in July 2017 for the creation of COTREX. (source)
  • 2017 - State Award - American Trails
    • American Trails presented former governor John Hickenlooper a State Award for making compelling and significant contributions to the trails movement in their home states through the COTREX application. (source)

App Store Content

Discover and explore Colorado’s unique trail experiences with the Colorado Trail Explorer. Available for free, COTREX offers the most comprehensive trail map available for the state and is built atop data from over 230 trail managers.

View trails by allowed uses on the map, browse featured routes, download offline maps, record trips and notes in the field, complete challenges to earn badges, and share your experiences with the community. COTREX is your gateway into Colorado’s magnificent outdoors. 

    • Browse or search to find trails and Feature Routes that match your activities or interests.
    • Change activity type to dynamically filter trails on the map.
    • No cell coverage? No problem! Download maps ahead of time for a continuous experience that doesn’t depend on your network. 
    • COTREX offline maps are lightweight in size and easy to download. 
    • Capture the details of your outdoor experiences by recording Trips.
    • Go beyond simple photos by taking and classifying rich Field Notes along the way. Choose from 45,000+ classifications that include trail conditions, species, rocks and minerals, historic places, points of interest, and much more.
    • Seamlessly sync activity recorded on your devices with the web. 
    • By recording and classifying Field Notes, you can complete Challenges and earn Badges for your profile. 
    • Inform and inspire the entire COTREX community by sharing your Trips and Field Notes publicly or submitting Trip Reports. 
    • View activity feeds for all users or just the ones you follow.
    • By sharing your experiences, you also help to inform trail managers about current conditions on the ground. 
    • The Colorado Trail Explorer endeavors to map every trail in the state of Colorado in support of the Colorado the Beautiful Initiative. COTREX connects people, trails, and technology by coordinating the efforts of federal, state, county, and local agencies to create a comprehensive repository of recreational trails for public use.
    • This project is led by Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) and the Department of Natural Resources, but is only made possible through partnerships with organizations at every level statewide. COTREX represents a seamless network of trails managed by over 230 land managers.

The Future

  • COTREX is developing a variety of new features to be released in 2019, including:
  • Integrating winter motorized and non-motorized trails into the application. This will include snowmobiling and cross country skiing, and may include snowshoeing, fat biking, etc.
  • Tablet support for iOS and Android.
  • Adding a custom events layer functionality for features such as temporary non-seasonal trail closures, and other dynamic alerts like volunteer stewardship opportunities.
  • Improved sharing and tagging functionality.