Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park

Quick Facts

Rocky Mountain National Park


(970) 586-1206

Map Directions

Things To Do


Rocky Mountain National Park is a living showcase of the grandeur of the Rocky Mountains. With elevations ranging from 8,000 feet in the wet, grassy valleys to 14,259 feet at the weather-ravaged top of Long's Peak, a visitor to the park has opportunities for countless breathtaking experiences and adventures. Elk, mule deer, moose, bighorn sheep, black bears, coyotes, cougars, eagles, hawks and scores of smaller animals delight wildlife-watchers. Wildflower-lovers are never disappointed in June and July when the meadows and hillsides are splashed with botanical color. Autumn visitors can relax among the golden aspens or enjoy the rowdier antics of the elk rut (mating season). More than 350 miles of trail offer endless opportunities to hikers, backpackers and horseback riders. Fly fishers, bird-watchers and photographers discover the splendor that they traveled so far to find. During the winter, snowshoers and cross-country skiers revel in the white-blanketed tranquility of meadows and forests. The 60 peaks rising above 12,000 feet challenge intrepid hikers and climbers. Anyone visiting between Memorial Day and late autumn can see many of these peaks eye-to-eye by driving over Trail Ridge Road. Topping out at 12,183 feet, this is the highest, continuous, paved road in the United States. Front-country and backcountry campers have hundreds of campsites to choose from. Civilization and its amenities are available in the towns of Estes Park and Grand Lake which flank the park on the east and west sides respectively. Ranger-led activities are an entertaining way to learn more about your surroundings. Plan some time to acclimate to the high altitude and come find your adventure in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Map of Rocky Mountain

Latitude, Longitude: 40.366390, -105.560389



  • Bird Watching

    Many bird species found in the park call the mountainous habitats in the southern Rockies home. Specialty species include: white-tailed ptar-migan, dusky grouse, gray jay, Clark's nutcracker, red-naped sapsucker, red-shafted flicker, mountain chickadee, pygmy nuthatch, American dipper, Western tanager, pine grosbeak, red crossbill, Townsend's solitaire, yellow-rumped warblers, brown-capped rosy finch, Western bluebird, hermit thrush, Rufous hummingbird and black-billed magpie. In 2000, the park was designated as a Globally Important Bird Area, recognizing its vital role in the perpetuation of birds.

  • Bicycling

    Road bikes are allowed into the park and there are many outstanding roads for bicyclists to ride. Elevations range form 8,000 to 12,183 feet (2,400 to 3,700 m). There are 60 miles (97 km) of hard-surfaced road with a five to seven percent grade. Off-road mountain bikes, trailbikes and mopeds are prohibited off of established roads in the park.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    The road system of Rocky Mountain National Park offers visitors access to diverse ecosystems characterizing the higher regions of the central Rocky Mountains. The roads take visitors through lowland meadows and aspen groves, along swift-flowing rivers and up through subalpine forests to more than 12,000 feet in elevation. No other national park roads offer the dramatic experience of a long drive across alpine tundra region, and few offer such a wide variety of experiences.

  • Camping

    With five drive-in campgrounds Rocky Mountain National Park provides a variety of camping experiences. Three campgrounds, Moraine Park, Glacier Basin, and Aspenglen, are on the reservation system. Longs Peak and Timber Creek campgrounds are on a first-come, first-served basis. Backpackers may choose from over 200 backcountry campsites when they apply for their backcountry camping permits.

  • Climbing

    Climbing has been a popular activity in and around the area known today as Rocky Mountain National Park since the 1800s. The wide variety of peaks and granite rock formations in the park provide excellent opportunities for a wide spectrum of climbing including rock, big wall, snow and ice, bouldering and mountaineering. It is a mecca for local climbers, as well as those from around the world. Opportunities for climbing exist in many areas of the park including Lumpy Ridge and Longs Peak.

  • Fishing

    Sport fishing is permitted in Rocky Mountain National Park, a protected area. Fishing activities are balanced with efforts to restore and perpetuate natural aquatic environments and life. Populations of at least four species of trout exist in the park: brown, brook, rainbow, and cutthroat. Some suckers also inhabit the streams and lakes. Only 48 of the 156 lakes in the park have reproducing populations of fish.

  • Hiking

    More than 350 miles of trail offer endless opportunities to hikers, backpackers and horseback riders. Anglers, bird-watchers and photographers discover the splendor that they traveled so far to find. During the winter, snowshoers and cross-country skiers revel in the white-blanketed tranquility of meadows and forests.

  • Horseback Riding

    Horses have been part of Rocky Mountain Park's tradition since its designation in 1915. Recreational pack animal use is balanced with other recreational uses such as hiking. Packing is managed to maintain the natural resources and unique ecosystems in the park. Horses, mules, ponies, llamas, and burros allowed on park trails. There are two stables located within the park: Glacier Creek Stables and Moraine Park Stables. There are also dozens of stables outside the park. There are two Estes Park stables open in the winter: Sombrero Stables and Aspen Lodge Stables.

  • Picnicking

    There are dozens of picnicking areas located throughout the park. Many have amenities such as flush toilets, tables, fire grills and areas for portable grills. Day use picnicking is prohibited in all five campgrounds from the Friday before Memorial Day through the end of September: Aspenglen, Glacier Basin, Longs Peak, Moraine Park, Timber Creek. Any picnicking which interferes with overnight campers is prohibited at all times.

  • Wildlife Watching

    Rocky Mountain National Park visitors have a passion for viewing wild animals, especially the big ones. With an elk herd numbering more than 3,000, about 800 bighorn sheep, numerous mule deer and a small population of moose calling the park home, it's no surprise that wildlife watching is rated the number-one activity by a vast majority of Rocky's three million annual visitors. The park is also home to moose, otters, marmots and ptarmigans.

  • Winter Sports

    There are many exciting winter activities including skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, winter hiking and snowmobiling.


Rocky Mountain National Park is open 24 hours a day year-round. Most visitor centers are open year-round while others are closed seasonally. Rocky Mountain National Park has the highest (elevation) paved roads in any National Park in the United States. Many roads close each season during the colder months. Plan ahead and check road conditions before visiting.

Park Partners

Rocky Mountain Nature Association

The nonprofit Rocky Mountain Nature Association was founded in 1931 to develop informational brochures for the park. Today, through the publication and sale of educational materials, RMNA supports the research and educational programs of Rocky Mountain National Park and its public lands partners. RMNA also raises funds for trails and improvement projects within Rocky Mountain National Park.

(970) 586-0108

Trail Ridge Store

Xanterra Parks & Resorts operates the Trail Ridge Store at Rocky Mountain National Park, as well as a cafe and coffee bar. The store offers a unique collection of gifts and souvenirs. Specialty items include handmade Native American handcrafts and jewelry, Rocky Mountain National Park apparel, books and DVDs and decorative home accents such as beautiful, southwestern throws and pillows, framed artwork, candles and ceramic figurines.

(970) 586-2133



From Denver and the east, take U.S. 34 from Loveland, CO or U.S. 36 from Boulder through Estes Park, Colorado.

Denver International Airport, Denver Tech Center or downtown Denver it is approximately a two-hour drive to the park. From the airport take Pena Boulevard to Interstate 70 west. Continue on Interstate 70 west until intersecting with Interstate 25 north. (An alternate route from the airport to Interstate 25 is the toll road Interstate 470.) Go north on Interstate 25 to exit number 243 which is Colorado Highway 66. Turn west on Highway 66 and go about 16 miles to the town of Lyons. At the first traffic light U.S. Highway 36 will come in from the left. Continue to the right - west - (now being on U.S. Highway 36) all the way to Estes Park, about 22 miles. U.S. Highway 36 intersects with U.S. Highway 34 in Estes Park. Either highway leads to the national park, west of the town.

From west or south, take Interstate 70 to U.S. 40 between Georgetown and Idaho Springs, then to U.S. 34 in Granby, Colorado through Grand Lake, Colorado.


Denver International Airport is approximately a two-hour drive from the park.

Public Transportation

A train runs to Granby (GRA). There is no public transportation between the train and park.

Phone Numbers


(970) 586-1206


(970) 586-1206

Road conditions

(970) 586-1222


(970) 586-1242

Lost & found

(970) 586-1242

Campground reservations

(877) 444-6777