Colorado Weed Laws can be difficult to understand and navigate if you go the route of reading them code by code, section by section. To make things a bit easier, we’ve separated the must-have information from the legal jargon. We’ve also answered some frequently asked questions both locals and visitors may find helpful before toking up.
Despite all the videos, pictures and roadside reefer-heads you may have encountered up ’till now, smoking weed in public is prohibited in Colorado. While it may not seem fair that you still have to hide out in your apartment or 420 friendly hotel to spark up that blunt, save yourself the fine and err on the side of discrepancy when consuming Marijuana in Colorado.
Colorado State Troopers may ignore that invisible skunk hiding in your center console, but you better believe that leniency disappears as soon as you leave Colorado. Border-town jails are filling up with entrepreneurs who thought they’d take home a little sample of that hydroponic fire, only to be burned by an unsympathetic cop. Ganja law is only green on this side of the fence, so smoke your stash before you pack your bags.
Possessing a reasonable amount of pot may not land you in jail here, but driving under the influence of any drug, including Marijuana, is still illegal. Colorado police are still responsible for getting stoned motorists off the road, so if you must embark on an epic quest for two extra-large pizzas and a bag of Cheetos, find a sober driver or hoof it. Colorado tests for Marijuana in the blood of suspected intoxicated drivers, and anything over 5 nanograms in your system will get you in trouble. Driving high is a similar offense as driving drunk.
Chances are if you are downtown and look a bit cheesed, some friendly street vendor will proposition you for an on-the-spot weed deal. Not only are these characters usually looking to rip off visitors with poor quality product and high prices, it is illegal to purchase anything weed related from an unlicensed source. You also don’t know what that cannabis-peddling clown may have sprinkle on his weed, so stick with the real distributors and buy from a licensed shop.
This one is pretty simple. Don’t buy weed for kids. Not only is it irresponsible to supply minors with Marijuana, it’s against the law.
When something as big as the legalization of retail Marijuana happens, questions will be asked. Millions and millions of questions. We don’t have the space or time to hit them all, but we did try to answer the most frequently asked conundrums facing our cannabis consuming friends.
Marijuana sales are, like alcohol, regulated by age. Anyone over 21 years old can buy Marijuana products in Colorado. Resident patients with Marijuana medical licenses can purchase their Mary Jane medications as long as they are 18 or older, although some shops still require all customers to be over 21. Prospective patients under 18 can still obtain a license as long as a parent or guardian accompanies them to the prescribing doctor’s office.
Retail reefer-buyers can obtain different amounts depending on residency status. Colorado residents can buy up to one ounce at a time. Visitors can buy 1/4 ounce at a time. All people over 21 will be able to possess up to one ounce. Customers can frequent one of the over 100 different Marijuana establishments in Colorado, most of which are located in the Denver area.
This answer depends mostly on whether you’re a recreational or medical user. Medical patients can expect to pay around $120 to $180 an ounce, whereas retail customers can expect to pay anywhere from $300 to $400 an ounce. Remember that Marijuana, especially recreational, is very highly taxed. It’s also typical for shops to sell different product to medical and recreational buyers, although quality is usually very high for both.
The only safe answer is at home or in a 420 friendly hotel or rental. Although it is technically illegal to smoke in any public area, people are generally quite tolerant of smokers who are polite and practice discrepancy. While smoking in downtown Denver is not advised, taking a solitary toke in the mountains is not going to land you in jail. My advice is to avoid kids and crowds and be respectful of everyone’s space. Smoking in a vehicle is strictly prohibited, and driving while high is a similar offense to driving drunk.
As long as your landlord doesn’t mind and you stay within the limitations set by Colorado law, growing your own cannabis is legal. Possessing six plants total, with a maximum of three flowering (growing buds) is the limit, and keeping them in a locked, secure space is required. Remember, these aren’t tomato plants, so discretion is still the name of the game. Once it’s time to harvest, you’re entitled to all the fruits of your labor, even if it exceeds one ounce. Transporting more than an ounce is still against the law.
Employers are still allowed to test for pot in your piss, so don’t go blazing up before you know their stance on Marijuana consumption. The government still allows employers to set their own standards on drug enforcement in the workplace.
It is illegal for anyone to make a list of Marijuana customers. That sign-in sheet is for the shops own use, and you won’t be rounded up and questioned about that gram of Kush you just purchased.
So you’re a Canadian looking to share in our good fortune, eh? Canadians can buy weed in Colorado as long as they are at least 21 years old. We do have one tip for our northerly neighbors, though; Marijuana is illegal on a national scale in the United States, so border-crossing agents can deny you entry into the United States if you tell them your coming here to toke up. In addition, leaving the state or entering Denver International Airport with pot is illegal, so smoke it or leave it behind when it’s time to head home.