November 26, 2020

Rocky Mountain National Park – Overview, History, & Attractions

Rocky Mountain National Park, is situated in northern Colorado. It can be reached in approximately two hours from the state capital, Denver. The park is infamous as having the highest paved roads found in any of the country’s national parks. Though smaller than many of the nation’s parks, the 265,760 acres of wilderness open to visitors contain a huge variety of ecosystems and landscapes.

rocky mountain national park

With mountain peaks that soar 14,000 feet above sea level, visiting the Rocky Mountain National Park is not for the faint of heart. The four hundred plus miles of land encompasses rich scenery that is amongst the most inspiring anywhere in the country. The lakes, forests, and wildlife are a joy to behold no matter when you choose to visit.

Though the park was first established on 26th January, 1915, it was not given a special wilderness designation until 1980. The biosphere status was approved during the presidency of Jimmy Carter.

To get a taste for the sights and sounds on offer in this stunning national park, the best introduction would be to take a trip along the Trail Ridge Road. This was constructed at the start of the 1930s and is still one of the most incredible drives to be found on the mainland US. Before heading out on this road, it is worth ensuring that your vehicle is in full working order, there are eight miles that are spent driving above 11,000 feet; this places a strain on even the most powerful vehicles. The Trail Ridge Road covers a distance of forty eight miles, from Estes Park in the east to Grand Lake in the west. If you have medical conditions, make sure you travel fully prepared, altitude sickness can be expected.

If you are a wildlife enthusiast or nature photographer, you will love the chance to catch a glimpse of the large mammals that abound in the park. There are bighorn sheep and elk, as well as a diverse range of other wildlife, such as moose and coyotes.

With more than three hundred and sixty miles of trails, Rocky Mountain National Park will never tire, no matter how many times you visit. There is also the option of horseback riding, fishing, and mountain climbing. If you visit during the cold winter months, you can try your hand at cross country skiing as well as snowshoeing.

The park gates are open twelve months of the year and twenty four hours a day. You can choose which time of year best suits your requirements. If you are planning on making a trip during the school holidays, it can be useful booking your lodgings as far in advance as possible.

If camping, you can organise your reservation five months ahead of your planned arrival date. It is important to note that of the six campgrounds located within the park, none have water, electric or sewerage hook-ups. They attract people who are interested in a true wilderness experience.

Though there is no luxury accommodation to be found within the parks boundaries, there are plenty of resorts, motels, lodges, and hotels located in communities around the area.

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