Rocky Mountain National Park

Knowing when to visit a national park is one of the most important aspects of your visit. Depending on the season you visit, you will be able to enjoy different activities.

Plan your Visit to
Rocky Mountain National Park

A Park for All Seasons

There are some national parks that are only open certain times of the year, but Rocky Mountain National Park is open throughout the year and offers different adventures and fun of all types depending on the season. Here is a rundown of what the seasons really mean in Rocky Mountain National Park.

When to go

April – May – June – July – August – September – October

Activities

Stunning Vistas – Fishing – Wildlife – Scenic Drives – Climbing – Family – Hiking – Biking – Horseback Riding – Bird-Watching – Wild flowers – Winter Sports – Day Trip

Fall

Fall is one of the most beautiful times of the year. In Rocky Mountain National Park, you can see the leaves change from bright green and lush to the most vivid hues of brown, gold, and orange. The colors are amazing and make for some pretty impressive pictures, but if you do not want to simply sit and watch the leaves change color, the cool mountain air is perfect for an autumn stroll. During your hike, you are quite likely to see the elk butting heads with one another. These head butting competitions are meant to attract a mate and prove dominance, so if you encounter a couple of males engaging in such activity, remain quiet and keep your distance.

Although fall is a time of year that the temperatures begin to drop most places throughout the country do not see snow until much later in the year. Rocky Mountain National Park however is a place that regularly has autumn snow fall especially when you begin to hike into the higher elevations of the mountainous region. The snow against the fall color scheme is an absolutely amazing site to behold.

Winter

Those who live in the Rocky Mountain region are not the type of people to be scared away with the notion of significant snow fall. Although the temperatures dip considerably this time of year within Rocky Mountain National Park, the fun does not end. Sledding and tubing in the Hidden Valley are favorite sports for visitors. Downhill skiing is also a favored activity and both Winter Park and Eldora are perfect places for skiers of all experience levels.

Certain camping areas throughout the park, including Moraine Park, Timber Creek, and Longs Peak, never close so if you are looking to camp within the park make sure that you are well equipped with warm camping gear and if you are to venture into the wilderness for backcountry camping, stop by the Kawuneeche Visitor Center to obtain your free pass. Also, make certain that you note any off-limits areas since the area is prone to avalanches during heavy snow falls.

Spring

Springtime is a time where the earth begins to wake from a long winter’s nap, but at Rocky Mountain National Park, the beauty never sleeps. Snow begins to melt during this time of year and flowers begin to bloom, but the natural beauty continues with the new birth surrounding visitors at every turn. New elk and moose calves can be seen trying to get their footing with their mothers closely watching by their side.

Depending on how early during springtime you visit, you may be able to take advantage cross country skiing in March as well as the last snow’s snowmobile adventures. In addition to that, a calm horseback riding excursion will allow you to see the rich beauty that surrounds Rocky Mountain National Park during the spring season.

Summer

By far, summer is the most popular time of the year to visit Rocky Mountain National Park. Families of all types enjoy the lodges throughout the park as well as the chance to sleep right in nature at the many campgrounds that fill up quickly during the summer. Popular summer activities include boating, swimming, horseback riding, and hiking through the many peaks and valleys throughout the area. If you plan on a summer trip, make sure that you have ample supplies for what you intend to do. In addition to your normal supplies, bring along plenty of water. You can never have too much water during the hot summertime weather.

Fees Involved

Passes to visit Rocky Mountain National Park are dependent upon how you are arriving and how long you are staying. A one day pass for a vehicle is $20, $10 for non-motorized vehicles and walk ins, and $20 for motorcycles. The 7-day pass is a much better deal and is $30 for vehicles, $15 for walk-ins, and $25 for motorcycles. Annual passes can be purchased for $50 dollars and enable you to enter Rocky Mountain National Park as much as you like throughout the year. The beauty that surrounds Rocky Mountain National Park makes it a must see destination throughout the year and the fact that the park is open during all seasons makes it a very enticing option for families of all sizes. Have fun and enjoy all that Rocky Mountain National Park has to offer.