• Photo of early morning clouds hanging low in the valley with mountains of the Continental Divide stretched out above. NPS Photo/Schonlau

    Rocky Mountain

    National Park Colorado

Research Assistance

Entrance Fee Waivers Entrance fee waivers will be provided to researchers as a part of the Research Permit process. Researchers will only be issued entrance fee waivers for those members of their staffs who will be entering the park separately.

Transportation Trail Ridge Road is open from approximately Memorial Day to the beginning of October. For current road condition information, see the Road Status Report page or call the Trail Ridge Road Status hotline at 970-586-1222. The only public transportation within the park is our shuttle system, which runs during the summer. Park vehicles are not available for research purposes.

Assistance by Park-recruited Volunteers or by Park Staff To the extent possible, the park will assist researchers in recruiting volunteers for valid research projects. In extremely limited situations, it is possible to obtain the assistance of park staff on a research project. After obtaining a Research Permit for your project, please contact the Research Administrator for more information.

Minimum Requirement Analysis Ninety-five percent of Rocky Mountain National Park has been designated as Wilderness. Activities in the Wilderness portions of the park and involving use of any piece of power equipment, generator, access by any means other than by foot (or horseback in some areas) will require the preparation of a Minimum Requirement Analysis. Please be certain to include information on use of such equipment during your application for a Research Permit. The park's Research Administrator will provide the appropriate instructions and forms.

Overflight Request Rocky Mountain National Park is under a congressionally mandated overflight ban. Overflights for the purposes of research are severely restricted, but possible under certain very specific conditions. Should an overflight of the park be necessary as a part of the research activity, you will need to provide a Minimum Requirement Analysis and also prepare an Overflight Request. Please be aware that any research proposing overflights will receive additional scrutiny before it is authorized. No such research will be permitted unless it addresses a critical park management need and there is no other way to accomplish the research. Please contact the Research Administrator for additional information when you submit your Research Permit Application.

Entry into Restricted or Closed Areas The Research Administrator handles requests to enter closed areas for research purposes. Requests must be made during the Research Permit process or at least a month in advance of the proposed date of entry. Such entry is sometimes possible if it is essential for the purposes of the research and cannot be accomplished during times when areas are not closed or restricted.

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