Yurt Overnights Returning to Colorado State Park After Controversial Pause

Yurts were traditionally used by nomads in Mongolia, Siberia, and Turkey.
Yurt Overnights Returning to Colorado State Park After Controversial Pause
A yurt located in State Forest State Park under the stars on a clear night. (Mike DelliVeneri/Colorado Parks and Wildlife/TNS)
Tribune News Service
By Seth Boster From The Gazette

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.—A beloved camping tradition is returning to Colorado.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife recently announced a new concessionaire to manage yurts at State Forest State Park in the state’s northwest mountains. Steamboat Springs-based Yonder Yurts will now be in charge of booking reservations.

“We know this camping experience has been missed by many of our visitors,” State Forest’s acting manager, Tony Johnson, said in a news release, “and we are looking forward to working with Yonder Yurts to once again have this unique experience available to our guests for many years to come.”

The experience was a longtime favorite up until September of 2022, when CPW said it terminated a contract with Never Summer Nordic to run the yurts.

Later that winter, The Colorado Sun reported several customers had booked reservations and not seen refunds by the company, while CPW maintained, on its website, that Never Summer Nordic “took the reservations and $$ and did not share any of the information with us.” CPW’s letter to customers indicated they could try getting refunds from their banks and added the agency “sincerely regrets the inconvenience caused by the yurt closure.”

Now State Forest State Park includes a notice to check back for reservations later this summer. That’s after Yonder Yurts finishes building seven new yurts.

“We have long recognized the potential to enhance the previous yurts, so when the opportunity arose to become the new concessionaire, we were absolutely thrilled,” Yonder Yurts co-owner Corey Peterson said in the news release.

Yonder Yurts will also manage the Nokhu Hut and Agnes Creek Cabin, what CPW said will “go through much needed updates and renovations later this summer.” Yonder also plans on building an office space near the state park maintenance shop.

Known as the “mini Rocky Mountain National Park,” State Forest State Park is Colorado’s largest state park at close to 71,000 acres.

The park’s latest management plan, from 2019, called yurts and cabins “in high demand, especially during summer and winter seasons.” Weekend reservations were “difficult” to come by, the plan indicated, “and often during weekdays in the summer.”

Copyright #YR Colorado Springs Gazette. Visit at gazette.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
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