Rifle Gap State Park
Rifle Gap is the ‘main’ state park of the three closely lumped parks in the area; it has the visitor center, the most facilities, and the most visitors. The lake itself is only mediocre, bird-wise, but can be good during migration. Combined with the surrounding pinyon-juniper woodland and montane shrubland, though, it makes a good birding location. And it is also a good place to camp while visiting the Rifle area. In the pinyon-juniper woodland look for Ash-throated Flycatcher, Bushtit, Black-throated Gray Warbler, Pinyon Jay, and more. On the lake look for dabblers and divers, with the occasional loon or grebe. Barrow’s Goldeneye can sometimes be found on the lake during the late fall and early winter.
Habitat: Pinyon-Juniper Forest, Reservoir
Directions: Get off at the Rifle exit on I-70 (exit 90) and head 4 miles north on CO-13 to CO-325. Turn right onto CO-325 and follow this road north to the reservoir. The entrance will be on your left in about 5 miles.
Delorme: 34 C3-C4
Roads of Colorado: 67 D2
Dates of Access: Open all year
Ownership: Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Admission: State Parks Pass
Parking: Parking areas
Handicapped Access: Handicap accessible facilities and camping; some car birding