While it is possible to travel through Rocky Mountain National Park and not catch sight of any wildlife, we venture to say that is an unlikely experience. From everyday sightings of chipmunks and mule deer to the moving experience of viewing elk in rut (the mating season), the animals in the park let you know that you are part of something truly wild. Some of these critters are harder to spot than others - they might camouflage themselves in the trees or hide in the underbrush - but look closely and you may have an encounter unlike any other. 
Misty Mountain Lodge offers the best of both worlds. 2 miles to the National Park, 2 minutes walk to everything downtown. We have rooms, suites and cabins. Every single unit is different! The back of our property is Little Prospect Mountain, and the Big Thompson River is right across our lane. If you cross the bridge in front of our place, you can follow the Riverwalk about a block down to the River Plaza (at the confluence of the Big Thompson and Fall Rivers) on the back side of downtown Estes Park.

Couples can share snowy adventures together, try out new activities, or split up and go different directions during the day.  Meals with other engaging guests liven the conversation, and the dining room is always filled with laughter. Leisurely afternoon naps or late night soak in the hot tub give couples a chance to retreat from it all and focus on each other.
Colorado is home to some of the most unique and mesmerizing terrain in the American west. Only in Colorado will you see vast beige plains transition into flowering fields and graceful red rock formations transform into the giant Rocky Mountain peaks. With a culture that combines the ruggedness of the frontier days with a laid-back modern mentality, Coloradans are a charming breed of Americans and their state is one of the most beautiful and diverse in the continental U.S.
The Stanley Hotel is much more than just a luxury hotel. In addition to its historic rooms, legendary grounds overlooking Rocky Mountain National Park and destination dining services, its storied and haunted past which reaches back more than 100 years has made it one of the most famous hotels in the country. Activities inside include a spooky Night Spirit Tour which explores the phenomena and folklore surrounding the hotel.
We got to the trailhead around 8am and barely ran into anyone our whole hike up. We used snowshoes the entire time but the trail is well defined. It wasn’t too windy for us but I have heard it can get really windy on this hike especially up at emerald lake. There are some inclines that will get your heart rate up but overall it isn’t too difficult of a hike. When we started to head back to our car around 9:30 the trail started to get really busy. When we left the parking lot was nearly full. If you want a quiet hike I suggested starting early.
Observing wildlife is one of the most popular activities in the Rockies. A drive through the park at dusk during the summer is sure to guarantee viewing of herds of elk and mule deer. And throughout the rest of the year, moose, bighorn sheep, black bears, coyotes, cougars, eagles, hawks and scores of smaller animals like pikas and marmots delight wildlife-watchers of all ages.
Gem Lake is high among the rounded granite domes of Lumpy Ridge. Untouched by glaciation, this outcrop of 1.8 billion-year-old granite has been sculpted by wind and chemical erosion into a backbone-like ridge. Pillars, potholes, and balanced rocks are found around the midpoint of the trail, along with views of the Estes Valley and Continental Divide.[42] Potts Puddle trail is accessible from the Black Canyon trail.[42]
The riparian ecosystem runs through the montane, subalpine, and alpine tundra zones and creates a foundation for life, especially for species that thrive next to streams, rivers, and lakes.[74] The headwaters of the Colorado River, which provides water to many of the southwestern states, are located on the west side of the park. The Fall River, Cache la Poudre River and Big Thompson Rivers are located on the east side of the park. Just like the other ecosystems in the park, the riparian zone is affected by the climatic variables of temperature, precipitation, and elevation. Generally, riparian zones in valleys will have cooler temperatures than communities located on slopes and ridge tops. Depending on elevation, a riparian zone may have more or less precipitation than other riparian zones in the park, with the difference creating a shift in the types of plants and animals found in a specific zone.[75]

Overlooking the scenic Beaver Creek Mountain, Park Hyatt Beaver Creek is a luxury Colorado resort and spa where guests can experience the vacation of their dreams. From breathtaking mountain views to championship golf courses to exquisite cuisine, Hyatt’s Beaver Creek ski resort offers the perfect year-round Vail Valley mountain escape with premium amenities, such as ski in and ski out access, a year-round heated outdoor pool, and an outdoor fire pit for roasting s’mores. 

Overlooking the scenic Beaver Creek Mountain, Park Hyatt Beaver Creek is a luxury Colorado resort and spa where guests can experience the vacation of their dreams. From breathtaking mountain views to championship golf courses to exquisite cuisine, Hyatt’s Beaver Creek ski resort offers the perfect year-round Vail Valley mountain escape with premium amenities, such as ski in and ski out access, a year-round heated outdoor pool, and an outdoor fire pit for roasting s’mores.

The Wildwood Inn is 4 miles west of Estes Park, for those lovers who want to get a little further away from it all. Situated on seven acres right on Fall River and adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, the inn is surrounded with majestic mountain views, river views and abundant wildlife. All the cabins, suites and vacation homes feature fireplaces, fabulous views, luxurious down bedding and high-thread-count linens. This is a great place to get away with that special someone in luxury, surrounded by natural beauty.
During the winter most of Trail Ridge Road is closed due to heavy snow, limiting motorized access to the edges of the park.[68] Winter activities include snowshoeing and cross-country skiing which are possible from either the Estes Park or Grand Lake entrances. On the east side near Estes Park, skiing and snowshoeing trails are available off Bear Lake Road, such as the Bear Lake, Bierstadt Lake, and Sprague Lake trails and at Hidden Valley. Slopes for sledding are also available at Hidden Valley. The west side of the park near Grand Lake also has viable snowshoeing trails.[68][88] Backcountry skiing and snowboarding can be enjoyed after climbing up one of the higher slopes, especially late in the snow season after avalanche danger has subsided[89], and technical climbing remains also a possibility, although typically differing in style from the summer months[90].
The history of Rocky Mountain National Park began when Paleo-Indians traveled along what is now Trail Ridge Road to hunt and forage for food.[11][12] Ute and Arapaho people subsequently hunted and camped in the area.[13][14] In 1820, the Long Expedition, led by Stephen H. Long for whom Longs Peak was named, approached the Rockies via the Platte River.[15][16] Settlers began arriving in the mid-1800s,[17] displacing the Native Americans who mostly left the area voluntarily by 1860,[18] while others were removed to reservations by 1878.[14]

According to my GPS app the winter track up the hillside from Dream Lake is slightly off from the actual trail, but connects up with the trail within 1/4 mile. Also, about 1/4 mile from Haiyaha the trail peters out and the established track goes straight downhill to the lake. We couldn't figure out where the actual trail was supposed to go so we followed the tracks; it's very steep but will get you to the lake.
Denver, the state capital, is the destination of choice for art lovers who delight in the artworks of Georgia O'Keeffe, Frederic Remington, Man Ray, Andy Warhol, David Hockney, and Charles M. Russell - whose works are on exhibit at the Denver Art Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art. For another take on museums, head to Colorado Springs, which is home to the Museum of the American Cowboy and the ProRodeo Hall of Fame.
Della Terra offers fourteen luxury suites,a lodge room with three-sided stone fireplace and waterfall, private spa treatment room, dry heat sauna, library, theatre room, styling salon, and espresso bar. Each suite features a see-thru fireplace, private balcony with 2 person hot tub, sitting nook with arched window, soaking tub before a romantic water feature, walk-thru jetted shower. Our suites are designed to celebrate and embrace the earth's elements, the seasons, or the skies.
Timber Creek: The only campground on the park's west side, Timber Creek is often the best bet for those seeking an open spot on a first-come basis. This campground offers 98 sites, accommodations for RVs up to 30 feet, a dump station and water hook-ups. Timber Creek is summer only and access from Estes Park is available only when Trail Ridge Road is open (usually Memorial Day through mid-October, depending on weather) approximate drive time from Estes Park is an hour and a half. 
When planning your next family vacation, you will not find a more inviting campground than Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resort. Besides having the best cabin rentals available, Jellystone Parks are the cleanest, friendliest parks in North America. The campground staff is knowledgeable, and always available to assist you during your stay at our campgrounds.

The land at Dao House sits on what was once a gathering place of peace for rival Native American tribes in the region. Over the years, it has operated as a homestead, a ranch and a fox farm before becoming a lodge for the first time in 1948. In 2015, Dao House emerged as a meeting point of western and eastern cultures and today, they offer lodging, equestrian experiences and wellness activities including an oxygen lounge, internal martial arts, personalized retreat programs and shorter wellness getaways.
The history of Rocky Mountain National Park began when Paleo-Indians traveled along what is now Trail Ridge Road to hunt and forage for food.[11][12] Ute and Arapaho people subsequently hunted and camped in the area.[13][14] In 1820, the Long Expedition, led by Stephen H. Long for whom Longs Peak was named, approached the Rockies via the Platte River.[15][16] Settlers began arriving in the mid-1800s,[17] displacing the Native Americans who mostly left the area voluntarily by 1860,[18] while others were removed to reservations by 1878.[14]
Southwest Colorado   |   Northwest Colorado   |   The Colorado Front Range   |   Vail Valley   |   Summit County   |   Pikes Peak   |   Purgatory Resort - Durango, CO   |   Granby Ranch   |   Summit Cove   |   Dakota Lodge, Keystone   |   Wildernest   |   River Run Village - Keystone, CO   |   Foothills Lodge and Cabins   |   Silvermill Lodge   |   Keystone Ranch   |   The Springs - Keystone   |   Lakeside Village - Keystone   |   Arapahoe Lodge, Keystone   |   Wildwood Suites - Breckenridge, CO   |   The Pines, Keystone   |   Ski Tip Lodge, Keystone   |   Snowdance Condominiums
Planning a large group getaway can be enough of a challenge. Let us make it easier for you with area expertise (check out our Smoky Mountain Memories magazine for tips) and large group lodges loaded with amenities and offering plenty of space. Ranging from 5 all the way up to an impressive 12 bedrooms, our group cabins can sleep anywhere from 16 to 50+ guests! Amenities like double appliances, huge dining spaces, multiple living rooms, private indoor pools, and large game rooms make group stays comfortable, memorable – and simpler! From retreat to reunion and beyond, we have the large group cabin rental for you.
This mansion-cabin is the highest priced on our list, but with the view of the lake and five-minute walk to downtown Frisco, we had to show it off! Bring grandma, grandpa, aunts, and uncles and make it a family getaway worth remembering. The three-level getaway has private garages, floor-to-ceiling windows, and four bathrooms. Find your own piece of paradise and escape to Frisco this winter!
Blackhawk Lodges: Everyone who stays here has their own delightful cabin. Each is a little bit different from the others. Some have sleeping lofts while others are all on one floor. All have charming knotty pine interiors, wood burning fireplaces, full kitchens, color cable TV’s, DVD players and free WIFI. For your further enjoyment, there are picnic tables, and charcoal grills right outside each cabin. There is fishing on the property and an open area down by the river with chairs for all. Also, there is a hot tub right down by the river. We are centrally located two miles outside of downtown Estes Park and two miles from the entrance to RMNP. Open year round, come and enjoy the sights and check out the various wildlife that may be strolling by your cabin at any time.
Brynwood on the River is your best choice when choosing your Estes Park rental. We offer a variety of accommodations, from cozy one-bedroom cabins to large vacation homes. Take advantage of our Stay “N” Play special and enjoy a cozy stay at Brynwood on the River. Book two nights and we’ll give you the third night FREE! So, book your stay with us and enjoy a romantic weekend in Estes Park.
Located in the moose capital of Colorado — Colorado State Forest State Park — Never Summer Nordic has built and operates seven yurts and two huts inside the state land. Their headquarters is located in Walden on the outskirts of the park, but their backcountry yurts can be found in jaw-dropping, secluded locations throughout all 70,838 acres. Whether you’re looking for a weeklong backcountry ski trip or a romantic weekend getaway, Never Summer Nordic has the yurt for you. See them all here.
On the east side of the park lies the Beaver Meadows Entrance, the most direct entrance from Estes Park, which lies right outside Rocky Mountain National Park. An hour’s drive from Boulder and two hours from Denver, the lively Estes Park is the closest town to the park on the east side of the park. Because the entrance is so accessible from Estes Park and open year round, it is the most popular.

This mansion-cabin is the highest priced on our list, but with the view of the lake and five-minute walk to downtown Frisco, we had to show it off! Bring grandma, grandpa, aunts, and uncles and make it a family getaway worth remembering. The three-level getaway has private garages, floor-to-ceiling windows, and four bathrooms. Find your own piece of paradise and escape to Frisco this winter!


According to my GPS app the winter track up the hillside from Dream Lake is slightly off from the actual trail, but connects up with the trail within 1/4 mile. Also, about 1/4 mile from Haiyaha the trail peters out and the established track goes straight downhill to the lake. We couldn't figure out where the actual trail was supposed to go so we followed the tracks; it's very steep but will get you to the lake.
There is nothing like camping in Rocky Mountain National Park to experience true wilderness. Luckily, there are many ways to overnight in its pristine lands, from backcountry campsites to tent villages to a few RV sites - ensuring you feel one with nature no matter how you prefer to camp. For complete details and information visit the official Rocky Mountain National Park Camping Webpage. 
Denver, the state capital, is the destination of choice for art lovers who delight in the artworks of Georgia O'Keeffe, Frederic Remington, Man Ray, Andy Warhol, David Hockney, and Charles M. Russell - whose works are on exhibit at the Denver Art Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art. For another take on museums, head to Colorado Springs, which is home to the Museum of the American Cowboy and the ProRodeo Hall of Fame.
Mountain Charm is a lovely log cabin, located only minutes (approx. 5 miles) from downtown Pigeon Forge and Dollywood. The cabin overlooks a spectacular mountain view and features a beautiful glass and beam wall that showcases the amazing view. Also included in the cabin are a fully equipped kitchen, dining area, living area, and a bedroom. A washer/dryer is provided…

Come enjoy a romantic weekend away at McGregor! We are nestled on the slopes of McGregor Mountain with panoramic views of the Continental Divide, Deer Mountain and Sundance Mountain. Being only one-half mile from the Fall River entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park, our property offers easy access to over 350 miles of hiking trails. We are bordered on the North by the National Park, so wildlife, including Bighorn Sheep, Elk, Mule Deer and many others, are common sights throughout the year. While being located in the natural beauty of the area, we are also only four and a half miles from the conveniences of downtown Estes Park where many shops, restaurants, and other attractions adorn our quaint mountain village. Spend a day in the park or in town and come “home” to relax by your own crackling fire while taking in the great views!
Enos Mills, the main figure behind the creation of Rocky Mountain National Park, enjoyed walking to Lily Lake from his nearby cabin. Wildflowers are common in the spring and early summer. In the winter, the trail around the lake is often suitable for walking in boots, or as a short snowshoe or ski. Other lakes in the Wild Basin include Chasm Lake, Snowbank Lake, Lion Lakes 1 and 2, Thunder Lake, Ouzel Lake, Finch Lake, Bluebird Lake, Pear Lake, and Sandbeach Lake. Many of the lakes have backcountry campsites. Waterfalls include Ouzel Falls, Trio Falls, Copeland Falls, and Calypso Cascades.[47] 

Our lodging is a 300 yd. walk to RMNP. The Big Thompson River flows thru our backyard.  Enjoy hiking, wildlife, fishing, birding & photography.  Treat yourself to a soak in our riverside hot tub. Some cabins w/ kitchens & fireplaces. Catering to singles, couples & small families.  Exceptionally clean & affordable w/ a relaxing atmosphere, personality & charm.   Swiftcurrent Lodge on the River Details
Colorado brims with historic monuments and nature trails that families with kids will love. Visit Bent's Old Fort National Historic Site to learn about the old traders, trappers, and Native Americans who once traded at this post. For pristine wilderness and solitude, the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail is a good choice. There's also San Isabel National Forest, which is home to Mount Elbert, Colorado's highest peak.

Boasting a rich history, cozy accommodations, delicious cuisine and spectacular mountain views, the Baldpate Inn is a traditional mountain getaway that has been enchanting visitors for nearly 100 years. Built in 1917, the Inn is located seven miles south of Estes Park next to the Rocky Mountain National Park and offers a variety of things to see and do. 

Colorado is a leader in the American foodie revolution and continues to set the bar nationwide. Seasonal and perfectly fresh foods are the focus, and health-conscious vacationers will find that the cuisine options are limitless. Many restaurants will let diners know which small farms and local producers were used in sourcing their meal. Colorado’s cities are consistently voted among America's best for foodies, particularly for their attention to quality.
The park may be accessed through Estes Park or via the western entrance at Grand Lake. Trail Ridge Road, also known as U.S. Route 34, connects the eastern and western sides of the park.[91] The park has a total of five visitor centers. The Alpine Visitor Center is located in the tundra environment along Trail Ridge Road, while Beaver Meadows and Fall River are both near Estes Park, with Kawuneeche in the Grand Lake area, and the Moraine Park Discovery Center near the Beaver Meadows entrance and visitor center.[9]

Spanning the Continental Divide, Rocky Mountain National Park stretches across 265,770 acres filled with alpine lakes, the headwaters of the Colorado River and dozens of peaks that reach 12,000 feet and higher. To access the park, there are four entrances, three on the park’s east side and one on the west. To make the most of your time in Rocky Mountain National Park, choose the entrance that will give you the best access to the sights you want to see and experience.
The Woodlands on Fall River: When vacationing in Estes Park, choose The Woodlands on Fall River. Awaiting you is a distinctive feeling of the Rocky Mountains with all the comforts of home. Located in a dramatic, mountain riverside setting, The Woodlands offers one and two bedroom suites overlooking the sparkling waters of The Fall River. Beautiful landscaping, bountiful wildlife, trees over 300 years old and Castle Mountain views all combine to provide the perfect location for your vacation or getaway in Estes Park. Just two miles from the Fall River Entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park… you have easy access to over 350 miles of hiking trails, bountiful wildlife and scenic drives unique to this great national treasure. Recommended on Trip Advisor.
This 5-bedroom residence features a stunning family room with a massive gas fireplace and a professional chef’s kitchen with dining area and breakfast nook. No expense was spared on the multi-zone sound system and other electronics throughout the home. Guests can settle into the cozy library/TV room or be blown away by the mineshaft themed cinema with a state-of-the-art digital projector and 11.1-point channel sound and hundreds of first-run movies and TV – all complimentary!
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