Answers to all your important Rocky Mountain National Park vacation questions about wildlife viewing, pets in the park, plus winter and backcountry routes.


Lightning Safety at High Elevations

Thunderstorms storms in the park have caused injury and even death. Read our tips for staying safe from lightening when hiking in high altitude. Read More...

Snowy Long's Peak (Photo by Ben Fullerton)

High-Altitude Sickness and How to Treat It

Rocky Mountain National Park starts at the already-lofty elevation of 7,840 feet and extends all the way up to 14,259 feet at the summit of Longs Peak. Read More...

rocky mountain on ipad

New iPad Edition

The inaugural issue of the National Park Journal offers the Ultimate Rockies Adventure, classic western vacations, trip-planning beta, and an abundance of seasonal activities for the whole family. Read More...

Where can I see wildlife?
There are reliable locations where many of the park’s wild animals may be seen, but never fed by humans. Check out our wildlife guide for viewing tips.

Where can I walk with a stroller or use a wheelchair?
Accessible trails are available at Coyote Valley, Sprague Lake and Lily Lake.

Is Trail Ridge Road Open?
Trail Ridge, the highest road in any US National Park (12,183′), is generally open seasonally from the last weekend in May through mid-October.

Where can I camp?
The park has five campgrounds. Two take reservations, and the others often fill early in the day during the summer.

Where can I hike to see beautiful lakes and waterfalls?
You can view high mountain lakes and waterfalls, or hike to scenic mountaintops, at these suggested locations.

Where can I walk with my dog?
Dogs must be leashed and are only allowed out along roadside pullouts and developed park areas (like campgrounds and picnic areas).

Where can I backpack and camp in the park’s backcountry?
The park has more than 200 backcountry sites. A permit is required for overnight camping in the backcountry.

What are some good winter hikes or snowshoe routes?
The east side of the park typically has poor winter skiing, but excellent winter snowshoes and hiking options. Check out our Winter Activities page for full skiing, sledding, and snowshoeing details.

What trees are in the park? Mammals? Fish? Birds? Amphibians and reptiles? Exotic Plants? Butterflies and moths?
Visit our Natural Wonders section to learn about all the flora and fauna in the park.

Top Ten Things to do in Rocky Mountain

1. See Aspens in Fall at Rocky Mountain National Park

Starting in late August, aspens in the highest reaches of the Park begin their annual quaking, a term to describe the aspens unique leaves changing a golden-yellow hue and how they react in wind. Read More...

2. Take in a Festival

Want to dance, drink, and eat good food all in the name of a frozen dead guy? Done. How about attend the best small rodeo in America? Yep, got that covered too. Or how about throwing on a kilt and tossing a kaber? Better yet, how about tossing it with the Rocky Mountains as your backdrop? Done, done and done. Read More...

3. Hike to the Top of Longs Peak

Dominating the skyline, and topping out at 14,259 feet, Longs Peak is the ultimate adventure for enthusiastic hikers. Read More...

4. 350 Miles of Hiking Trails

Over 350 miles of trails crisscross the Park, linking together alpine lakes, jagged peaks, thick lodgepole Pine forests and rocky tundra. Also, right outside the park sits plenty of National Forest land. Read More...

5. See Wild Animals

Home to thousands of Elk, Mule Dear, Marmots, Big Horn Sheep, and the occasional Black Beer, it’s not uncommon to have your Park experience include a wildlife sighting. Read More...

6. Enjoy a Ranger-Led Activity in Rocky Mountain National Park

We know exploring a national park can be an exciting activity to do on your own, but why not spend a few hours and check out a ranger-led program? Read More...

7. Drive Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park

Known appropriately as the Highway to the Sky, Trail Ridge Road crosses the continental divide at a whopping 12,183 feet. Colorado has also designated Trail Ridge Road as a scenic and history byway. Read More...

8. Go Sledding at Hidden Valley Snow Play Area

If you love skiing, snowmobiling, ice climbing, sledding, hut trips, ice skating, and anything that involves frozen water just figure Colorado is the place to be. Read More...

9. Spend a Night in the Historic, Haunted Stanley Hotel

Just six miles from Rocky Mountain National Park and towering above the small mountain town of Estes Park, The Stanley Hotel should be included in every visitors to do list. It was the inspiration for the book & movie, The Shining. The owner was the inventor of the Stanley Steamer car. Stay in this historic 138-room hotel Read More...

10. A Perfect Day in Rocky Mountain National Park

We decided to spill one of our perfect days in Rocky Mountain National Park, just for you. Read More...

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