Rocky Mountain National Park
Get ThereRocky Mountain National Park is about a two-hour drive from the Denver International Airport and downtown Denver.
What You’ll FindMore than 400 square miles of spectacular mountain environments (including at least 60 mountains that exceed 12,000 feet) 300 miles of hiking trails, wildflowers, bighorn sheep, ptarmigan, coyote, elk, clear lakes, rushing rivers, forests, starry nights and unforgettable memories.
Stay HereMoraine Park and Aspenglen campgrounds are reservable in advance. Longs Peak and Timber Creek campgrounds are first-come, first-served. All campgrounds fill on most summer nights (NOTE: Glacier Basin campground is closed for the 2012 season due to construction). Backcountry camping is also possible by obtaining a wilderness permit.
Make Sure YouPlan ahead. With so many different elevations, terrain and habitats, the list of possible activities and experiences is endless. Scenic drives, easy hikes or ambitious mountain climbs, gentle streams or raging waterfalls, fishing, picnicking, horseback riding, or wildlife viewing are just an example of what might fill your itinerary.
Try ThisSign up for a Rocky Mountain Nature Association field seminar! These are field-based, hands-on learning experiences in Rocky Mountain National Park covering a wide range of topics including wildflowers, mammals, birds, cultural history, outdoor skills, photography, painting and writing.
Don’t ForgetAcclimate yourself to the park’s elevation. The entire park is above 7,500 feet, and the elevation can affect even those even driving in a car. Altitude sickness symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue, dizziness, nausea, rapid heartbeat and insomnia. Wear a lot of sunscreen and other sun protection, and make sure you check beforehand for road closures and other maintenance issues that may occur during your visit.
Make sure you have plenty of drinking water (and refillable water containers) and food, rain gear, extra clothing, sun protection and anything else you may need in a pinch or for emergencies—including first aid.
View this Denver Itinerary to learn about many of the federal lands, recreation areas, national parks, and historical and cultural sites in the Denver area.
Read more about these Denver-area spots:
- Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve
- Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge
- Bear Creek Lake
- White River National Forest