• Photo of the continental divide blanketed in snow. NPS Photo by VIP Schonlau

    Rocky Mountain

    National Park Colorado

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Old Fall River Road will be closed in 2014 due to flood damage

    Damages on Old Fall River Road are extensive and the road will remain closed to vehicles through 2014. It is unknown at this time whether hikers and bicyclists will be allowed on the road. More »

  • Impacts from September 2013 Flood

    Due to recent flooding, there are still some closures in the park that could affect your visit. More »

Planning Checklist

Two Months Ahead
  • Decide who is going on the trip
  • Decide when and where you are going
  • Outline your hiking route
  • Call Backcountry Office (970-586-1242) for likely snow, trail, or campsite conditions at time of trip
  • Call or write for reservations or permits for campsites:

Backcountry Office
Rocky Mountain National Park
1000 U.S. Hwy 36
Estes Park, CO 80517
970-586-1242

  • Check permit regulations
  • Order maps and guidebooks and compass
  • Begin breaking in new boots

Three Weeks Ahead

  • Confirm group gear with hiking partners
  • Go over checklist of backpacking gear
  • Make sure your gear works and replace or repair
  • Plan your menu

One-Two Weeks Ahead

  • Buy and repackage food

Days Before

  • Pack gear, checking each piece off list as it enters the pack
  • Verify departure plans with hiking partners
  • Give a copy of itinerary and return time to a friend or relative

Day of Trip

  • Recheck gear when you meet with your group
  • Stop at Backcountry Office for permit and current backcountry information
  • Permit cannot be issued without license plate number(s)
  • Put car keys in safe place; give a duplicate to your hiking companion.
  • Head for backcountry and have a great time

Summer Gear Checklist Winter Gear Checklist

Did You Know?

a photo of treeline in Rocky Mountain National Park

If the current amount of total nitrogen deposition measured at the high-elevation monitoring site in Rocky Mountain National Park (3 kg/ha/yr) was the same throughout the park, the amount of airborne nitrogen entering the park would be equivalent to 35,500 twenty-pound bags of fertilizer. More...