Top 5 Things To Do in Rocky Mountain National Park
There's no denying the majesty of the Rocky Mountains. With beauty in all directions, Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado delivers some of the best views of the Rocky Mountains. The park is known for having the most peaks over 11,000 feet in the entire National Park System! If you are planning to visit the park this summer, be sure to know before you go. This year, Rocky Mountain National Park is requiring timed entry permits for all vehicles entering the park. To obtain an entry permit, please visit the National Park Service website here to plan your trip! Read more below about our Top 5 Things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park.
1. Drive Trail Ridge Road
Trail Ridge Road is a 46.5-mile road that connects Estes Park to Grand Lake in Colorado. The road traverses the Rocky Mountains’ climbing over 4,000 feet within the first few miles. The road continues to climb to over 11,500 feet, with about eleven miles of the highway being above the treeline. This road is excellent for experiencing the grandeur of Rocky Mountain National Park. And be sure to stop at Alpine Visitor Center along the route!
2. Visit The Alpine Visitor Center
The Alpine Visitor Center is the highest visitor center within the National Park System. Situated at the halfway point on Trail Ridge Road, this visitor center stands at an 11,796-foot elevation. The Alpine Visitor Center is open daily from 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM. Be sure to check out this stop on your next trip to Rocky Mountain National Park. And while you’re at it, check out the Rocky Mountain Conservancy gift shop to find a decorative art map of Rocky Mountain National Park to commemorate your trip!
3. Sprague Lake
Sprague Lake was named for Abner Sprague (pictured above), who was the very first person to pay the $3 entry fee to Rocky Mountain National Park in 1939! Sprague was a proponent of the park and local landowner. Today, Sprague Lake is one of the most popular areas in Rocky Mountain National Park to visit. While you’re there, be sure to hike the half-mile loop trail. The trail is a paved path, allowing for wheelchair and stroller accessibility. Make sure to always be aware of your surroundings, as there may be animals and as always, Leave No Trace.
4. Longs Peak
Longs Peak stands at 14,259 feet, looming over all other summits in Rocky Mountain National Park. The Peak attracts experienced climbers from all over the world. The Peak is accessed via the Keyhole Route, a 16-mile round trip journey. Most of the year, the mountain experiences winter conditions, allowing only for experienced winter mountaineers to traverse its’ landscape. Sometimes visible from Denver, Colorado Longs Peak can be admired from a safe distance.
5. Attend a Ranger-led program
One of the most fun things to do in any National Park is to attend a Ranger-led program. These programs are educational demonstrations or nature walks, allowing you to get one-on-one insight from the Rangers that know the park in and out. Learn about Big Horn Sheep, Rocky Mountain Elk, or the wildflowers that inhabit the area. For detailed program descriptions, visit the nearest visitor center in RMNP or by following this link!