Things To Do

family hiking 292X304

NPS/John Marino

Rocky Mountain National Park has 355 miles of hiking trails. They range from flat lakeside strolls to steep mountain peak climbs. If you are new to the park consult with rangers at visitor centers or the Wilderness Office. They can provide advice about trails which are appropriate to different fitness and experience levels. Check out some of the most popular hikes.

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Approaching Rock Cut on Trail Ridge Road

NPS/Ann Schonlau

Scenic Drives
The road system of Rocky Mountain National Park offers visitors access to diverse ecosystems characterizing the higher regions of the central Rocky Mountains. The roads take visitors through lowland meadows and aspen groves, along swift-flowing rivers and up through subalpine forests to more than 12,000 feet in elevation. Read about Trail Ridge Road and Old Fall River Road.

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Wildlife Watching and Photography
Whether it be bighorn sheep, elk, mule deer, or other wildlife, Rocky visitors have a passion for viewing wild animals, especially the big ones. A winter elk herd numbering between 200-600, about 350 bighorn sheep, and numerous mule deer call the park home. The park's great large-animal population makes it one of the country's top wildlife watching destinations. Here at Rocky you can find 60 species of mammals, 280 recorded bird species, 11 species of fish, and countless insects, including a surprisingly large number of butterflies. Get our tips for viewing wildlife and capturing amazing photos.

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Hollowell Park picnic area

NPS/Karen Daugherty

Enjoy picnic areas throughout Rocky Mountain National Park from dawn to dusk on a first-come, first-served basis (reservations are only available at Lily Lake).

Keep Wildlife Wild
Animals are quick learners and seek out food where it can easily be found.
Never feed wild animals.
Dispose of trash in bear-proof trash cans or dumpsters.
While enjoying your picnic, keep your food and trash items within arm's reach.

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NPS/Peter Biddle

Ranger-led Programs
Summer is a great time to take in one of the many Ranger-led programs. You can learn about the park, wildlife and flowers. Here is the current schedule.

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Child looking at the Big Horn Sheep display at the Fall River Visitor Center.

NPS/John Marino

Visitor Centers
Summer and Fall are the busiest seasons for Rocky Mountain National Park. Park Visitor Center hours also vary with the season. Details for each of the Visitor Centers are outlined on the Visitor Centers page.

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Aspenglen Campground

NPS/Debbie Bibble

Enjoy a night under the stars in Rocky Mountain National Park! Five campgrounds offer wonderful opportunities for outdoor fun and adventure. Have peace of mind knowing a campsite is waiting for you in beautiful Rocky. Camping reservations can be made and are highly recommended; make them one day to six months in advance. Group sites at Glacier Basin are reservable. The website for reservations is You can also call 877-444-6777. Our camping page has more details on each campground.

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NPS/Walt Kaesler

There are over 50 lakes and many streams where you can fish. Sport fishing is permitted in Rocky Mountain National Park, a protected area. A Colorado fishing license is required and special regulations exist. Fishing activities are balanced with efforts to restore and perpetuate natural aquatic environments and life. Our Fishing page has more detail on the lakes, streams, and regulations.

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NPS/Debbie Biddle

Horseback Riding
There are two stables located within the park: Glacier Creek Stables and Moraine Park Stables. Both open around Memorial Day in late May. Glacier Creek Stables: 970-586-3244; Moraine Park Stables: 970-586-2327. There are many stables outside the park that are permitted to bring riders into Rocky. Find contact information for the various stables in the area.

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Backpackers enjoying one of our many lakes

NPS/John Marino

Wilderness Camping
A wide range of wilderness camping experiences are available in Rocky. Those new to wilderness travel have ample opportunity to break their boots in slowly, while those with many miles under their belts can find new areas that test their mettle. Overnight travel in the wilderness requires a permit. Permits and information are available at two wilderness offices in Rocky Mountain National Park. Please contact the Wilderness Office (970-586-1242) for updated information on the status of wilderness campsites. Learn more about wilderness camping.

Last updated: January 18, 2024

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1000 US Hwy 36
Estes Park, CO 80517


970 586-1206
The Information Office is open year-round: 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. daily in summer; 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Mondays - Fridays and 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Saturdays - Sundays in winter. Recorded Trail Ridge Road status: (970) 586-1222.

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