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Rocky Mountain National Park

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J F M A M J J A S O N D

398 mi 640 km of trail 31 Featured Hikes

Gems 23 Gems Easy Trails 46 Trails Intermediate Trails 92 Trails Hard Trails 7 Trails

Rocky Mountain National Park's 415 square miles encompass and protect spectacular mountain environments. Landscapes on either side of the Continental Divide feature alpine lakes, forested valleys and a wide range of plants and animals. Iconic summer thunderstorms and persistent winter winds are among the forces that continue to shape this majestic landscape. Enjoy Trail Ridge Road, which crests over 12,000 feet including many overlooks to experience the subalpine and alpine worlds, along with over 300 miles of hiking trails, wildflowers, wildlife, starry nights, and fun times. In a world of superlatives, Rocky Mountain is on top!

To learn more about Rocky Mountain National Park, visit www.nps.gov.

Local Info

Visitor Centers:
Opening and closing dates and hours vary seasonally for visitor centers at Rocky Mountain. Check the park's website for current operating hours.
  • Alpine Visitor Center: Hours vary by season. Open year round.
  • Beaver Meadows Visitor Center: 8 am to 4:30 pm. Open year round (closed Thanksgiving and Christmas).
  • Fall River Visitor Center: 9 am to 5 pm through October 12. Winter hours and days vary.
  • Kawuneeche Visitor Center: 8 am to 4:30 pm. Open year round (closed Thanksgiving and Christmas).
  • Moraine Park Discovery Center: 9 am to 4:30 pm through October 12.

Visiting Tips

Rocky Mountain National Park is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, weather permitting. Summer and fall are the busiest seasons in the park. Parking lots can be full and roads congested. Arriving early or coming into the park in the late afternoon can help.

Due to the high elevations and exposure, park roads are subject to rapid weather changes and strong winds. Road conditions in and around the park can change quickly, particularly in the spring and fall, and some roads in the park are closed seasonally. Information on current road closures and conditions can be found here.

Fees & Passes:
To learn more about park fees, click here.

Camping & Lodging

If you are planning to camp overnight in the park, you must be in one of the designated campgrounds or backcountry campsites. Camping reservations are strongly recommended during the summer and fall. Call 1-877-444-6777 or reserve online at:reserveamerica.com orrecreation.gov.

  • Aspenglen Campground: $26 per night. Open May 26 through September 26
  • Glacier Basin Campground: $26 per night. Group sites are also available for $4 per person per night.
  • Longs Peak Campground: $26 per night. Seasonal closures vary by year.
  • Moraine Park Campground: $18 per night. Open year round.
  • Timber Creek Campground: $26 per night. Seasonal closures vary by year.

Additionally, there are a wide range of backcountry camping experiences available in Rocky Mountain. Overnight travel in the backcountry requires a permit which is available at two backcountry offices. These offices are open seven days a week, seasonal hours vary. Call 970-586-1242 or visit www.nps.gov for more information regarding backcountry camping in the park.

Food & Drink

The Trail Ridge Store, which includes a café and coffee bar and is adjacent to the Alpine Visitor Center, is the one restaurant inside the park and is open from approximately late May through early October. There are no grocery stores in Rocky Mountain National Park. The Rocky Mountain Conservancy sells very limited food items in the park visitor centers and bottled water at Bear Lake and Park & Ride during summer and fall.

Restaurants and grocery stores can be found in the local communities of Grand Lake and Estes Park. If you prefer to bring your own food into the park, there are several picnic sites that provide tables and, sometimes, restrooms and fire grates.

Outfitters, Tours, & Shuttles

Guided Tours:
Rocky Mountain National Park offers a variety of ranger-led programs that vary by season. All programs, unless otherwise specified, are free and open to the public. To learn more about these ranger-led programs and to see the current events calendar, click here.

Free Shuttles:
The park's free shuttle buses operate late spring, summer, and early fall. The buses do not run in late fall, winter, or early spring.
  • Moraine Park Route: Runs between Park & Ride and Fern Lake Bus Stop and leaves every 30 minutes from 7 am to 7 pm.
  • Bear Lake Route: Runs between Park & Ride and Bear Lake and leaves every 10-15 minutes from 7 am to 7 pm.
  • Hiker Shuttle Route: Makes stops at the Estes Park Visitor Center, the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center, and Park & Ride. The first bus leaves the Estes Park Visitor Center at 7:30 am and last bus leaves Park & Ride at 8:00 pm.

REI Adventures:
REI offers over 30 national park trips led by expert guides capable of taking you off the beaten path to discover hidden gems that many visitors never see.

Check out REI Adventures' national park offerings here.

Other Activities

Those looking for other ways to explore Rocky Mountain National Park will not be disappointed by the variety that the park offers. Road biking, rock climbing, bouldering, fishing, horseback riding, backcountry camping, and wildlife viewing are among the many activities that the park affords in the summer. In the winter, you can continue your exploration by snowshoeing or cross country skiing or by sledding at Hidden Valley. Visit Rocky Mountain's website for more information on the park's other activities.

Maps & Guidebooks

To download a variety of free brochures to help plan your visit, click here.

Gems in Rocky Mountain National Park - 23

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Featured Hikes in Rocky Mountain National Park - 31

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Trails in Rocky Mountain National Park - 114

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Estes Park, CO
3.2 mi 5.2 km Estes Park, CO
Minor Issues
Update
Snowy, Some Mud
1 day ago
23 
Estes Park, CO
4.2 mi 6.7 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Snowy - After reading several reviews that snowshoes were not necessary, we were very disappointed for not bringing ours on 3/24/18.
83 days ago
18 
0.9 mi 1.5 km
#3 Lake Haiyaha Trail
Estes Park, CO
0.9 mi 1.5 km Estes Park, CO
Minor Issues
Update
Snowy, Mostly Dry, Some Mud
11 days ago
16 
3.6 mi 5.8 km
#4 Twin Sisters Trail
Estes Park, CO
3.6 mi 5.8 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Dry
7 days ago
23 
0.9 mi 1.4 km
#5 Chasm Lake Trail
Estes Park, CO
0.9 mi 1.4 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Mostly Dry - Trail is in great condition with several small patches of packed snow to cross just below the lake.
2 days ago
6.3 mi 10.2 km
#6 Lawn Lake Trail
Estes Park, CO
6.3 mi 10.2 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Dry - Just a little snow at the top right before Lawn Lake. ~30 ft and easy to cross.
7 days ago
15 
7.0 mi 11.2 km
#7 Stormy Peaks Trail
Estes Park, CO
7.0 mi 11.2 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Mostly Dry: Only a couple of small patches of snow that are easy to go around. Trail is damp in spots, creeks are high!
13 days ago
9.5 mi 15.3 km
#8 Mummy Pass Trail
Estes Park, CO
9.5 mi 15.3 km Estes Park, CO
Bad / Closed
Update
Snowy - The first two miles are clear and then three feet of snow for the rest of the way. Will need snow shoes.
49 days ago
0.7 mi 1.1 km
#9 Emerald Lake Trail
Estes Park, CO
0.7 mi 1.1 km Estes Park, CO
Minor Issues
Update
Snowy, Mostly Dry, Some Mud
11 days ago
4.6 mi 7.4 km
#10 Gem Lake Trail
Estes Park, CO
4.6 mi 7.4 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Dry
36 days ago
18 
Grand Lake, CO
12.6 mi 20.3 km Grand Lake, CO
All Clear
Update
Some Mud
6 days ago
1.0 mi 1.6 km
#12 Dream Lake Trail
Estes Park, CO
1.0 mi 1.6 km Estes Park, CO
Minor Issues
Update
Snowy, Mostly Dry, Some Mud
11 days ago
11 
Estes Park, CO
4.0 mi 6.4 km Estes Park, CO
Unknown
Update
3.5 mi 5.7 km
#14 Fern Lake Trail
Estes Park, CO
3.5 mi 5.7 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Dry
10 days ago
18 
9.5 mi 15.3 km
#15 North Fork Trail
Estes Park, CO
9.5 mi 15.3 km Estes Park, CO
Minor Issues
Update
Mostly Dry: Trail clear to ~1mile past boundary creek, some downed trees after, mostly before lost meadow. Snow on last 1/4 mile to lake
5 days ago
Grand Lake, CO
0.6 mi 1.0 km Grand Lake, CO
Unknown
Update
6.8 mi 11.0 km
#17 Deer Mountain Trail
Estes Park, CO
6.8 mi 11.0 km Estes Park, CO
All Clear
Update
Dry
11 days ago
Grand Lake, CO
1.3 mi 2.1 km Grand Lake, CO
Bad / Closed
Update
Muddy, Snowy - Lot of spring snow left. Lot of fallen trees. Trail very hard to follow.
7 days ago
Grand Lake, CO
4.4 mi 7.2 km Grand Lake, CO
Unknown
Update
4.8 mi 7.7 km
#20 Ute Trail
Estes Park, CO
4.8 mi 7.7 km Estes Park, CO
Minor Issues
Update
Snowy, Some Mud, Icy - As you gain altitude, you'll cross streams, ice patches and snow/mud every so often.
48 days ago

Photos of Rocky Mountain National Park - 493

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