Established in 1836, the city of Fort Lupton is a small town straddling the front range and plains in northern Colorado. It is located just north of Brighton on U.S. Route 85.
Situated at 4,908 feet of elevation within Weld County, the town had a population of 7,955 in 2020. There are numerous commercial businesses to browse and historic structures to explore during your visit.
In 1838 Lieutenant Lancaster Lupton established Fort Lupton (originally Fort Lawrence) on Adobe Creek. It was one of the many forts along the South Platte River and also a dedicated trading post for trappers and Native Americans. They traded everything from buffalo hides to pots and pans.
The trading hub eventually collapsed in 1840 and the fort was left vacant for about 20 years before it was repurposed into a stagecoach station and then a family home. Finally, the South Platte Valley Historical Society purchased it and deemed it an archeological site.
The trading post was reconstructed in 2009 with a portion of the original adobe bricks close to the former site. You can find it in the northwest part of the city and explore the educational historical park with information about the old settlement and its former residents.
South Platte Valley Historic Park – Sitting on over 100 acres of land along the South Platte River, this historical society is home to several old buildings including a schoolhouse, trapper cabin, and a farmhouse. Take a guided tour of the grounds and get a feel for what life was like in the historic fur trading settlement.
The Vintage Flying Aero Museum – Perfect for aviation lovers, this locally owned museum has a collection of WWI and WWII planes and memorabilia to explore. Visitors can take a guided tour by the collection owner himself.
- Pepper Pod campground is a short drive east and has 36 sites available for RV camping. Pets are welcome, there are full and partial hookups, and each space comes with a picnic table.
- St. Vrain State Park is about 20 minutes northwest of town and features 8 different campgrounds with a total of 87 sites. There are electric-only and full hookups and each site has a grill, table, and concrete pad. No matter which campground you choose, you’ll only be a short walk to the lake.
- The South Platte River runs right by town, although the shallow waters aren’t the most ideal for fishing. However, there are plenty of trout so you’re sure to catch something.
- Barr Lake State Park has various warm-water fish species to cast a line for. Walleye, wiper, carp, and bass are just a few of the fish stocked in the lake, and they even have an ADA-accessible fishing pier available.
Golfing – Coyote Creek Golf Course is a centrally located 18-hole golf course that is perfect for any level of golfer. You’ll also find a clubhouse, pro shop, snack bar, and driving range here.
Hiking – Barr Lake State Park has numerous trails to wander. The longest is the Lake Loop, totaling 8.8 miles for hiking, biking, and even horseback riding. If you want a shorter stroll, check out the 1.5-mile trail that connects the Nature Center to the Gazebo Boardwalk.
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Motel 6 Fort Lupton – A simple spot if you want to stay the night right in town. Each room has WiFi, cable TV, and free coffee each morning.
If you’re looking for more accommodation options, head 15 minutes south to check out the hotels in Brighton.
Copper Kettle Kitchen – This cozy eatery serves up a menu full of hearty American food including sandwiches, breakfast plates, and biscuits and gravy. Visitors love the friendly staff and large portion sizes.
Wholly Stromboli – Get your fix of homemade Italian food at this locally-owned trattoria. They serve up pizzas, strombolis, calzones, salads, and some delicious bread pudding.
Chavez Family Mexican Restaurant – The local favorite spot for some authentic Mexican food. You’ll find tortas, tacos, enchiladas, and more.
Apr – Easter Egg Hunt – Head to the Rec Center for a morning full of exciting egg hunting around the property. The event will be split into three age groups and there will be 10 special golden eggs hidden among the others.
May – Cinco de Mayo 5k – A unique spin on the holiday, this certified 5k run and walk is a lovely way to spend a spring morning. After the race, enjoy live music, a food truck, and prizes.
Jul – Independence Day Celebration – Fort Lupton pulls out all the stops for this summer celebration. Activities include a high ropes course, carnival rides, a giant water slide, a beer garden, and of course, fireworks to end the night.
Jul – Citywide Yard Sales – One man’s trash is another man’s treasure at this weekend of citywide clean-out sales. Make some extra cash or browse your neighbors’ sales during this two-day event.
Sep – Trapper Days – This annual heritage celebration has been happening for over 100 years. The day kicks off with a parade down main street, followed by an afternoon filled with vendors, food, and some friendly competition.
Oct – Pumpkinfest – The Historic Fort Lancaster hosts this spooky autumn event, complete with one of the only haunted hay rides in the area. In addition to walking tours of the historic buildings, there will also be pumpkin carving, marshmallow roasting, and axe throwing.
Dec – Cookies & Cocoa with Santa – Browse handmade gifts at the vendor booths, get a selfie with Santa, and sip on some hot cocoa while you get in the holiday spirit at this annual community get-together.
Activities near Fort Lupton
- Brighton (7mi)
- Broomfield (24mi)
- Boulder (28mi)
- Denver (29mi)
- Fort Collins (48mi)
- Greeley (27mi)
- Keenesburg (17mi)
- Loveland (34mi)
- Longmont (21mi)
View the town’s official website.