Planning for a Winter Visit

Continental Divide from Storm Pass
View of the snow covered Continental Divide from Storm Pass

NPS/Daugherty

Are you planning a visit to Rocky Mountain National Park during the winter season? Winter is a magical time to visit the park, a time when there are fewer crowds and it's easy to enjoy both solitude and snow on a winter wilderness adventure.

However, snowpacked and icy roads, temperatures that frequenlty drop below freezing, and seasonal road closures can create challenges for visitors.

Extra planning is key to a successful winter adventure in Rocky Mountain National Park.

When Does the Winter Season Begin?

With elevations ranging from 7,800 feet to over 14,000 feet above sea level, winter conditions can greatly vary in the Rocky Mountains. The winter season, especially at locations above 8,000 feet, can stretch from late September or early October to late May or early June. Planning a trip to the park during April or May? You need to be ready for winter conditions.

 

Additional Resources to Help You Plan for a Fun Winter Adventure:

 
  • Roads

    Roads

    Tips to help your prepare for winter driving in the park

  • Weather

    What's the Weather Like?

    Weather and temperatures can vary greatly in Rocky Mountain National Park. Take the time to know the upcoming forecast for the park.

  • Safety Tips for Winter

    Safety Tips for Winter

    Are you familiar with winter recreation? Here are some safety tips to help you plan for your next winter adventure

  • Trail Conditions

    Trail Conditions

    What are the conditions like on park trails?

  • Winter Recreation

    Winter Recreation

    Learn about fun things to do in the park during the winter season

  • Winter Camping

    Winter Camping

    For the adventurous, winter camping can be great fun

 
Avalanche
View of a slope with a recent avalanche

NPS Photo

Be Avalanche Aware!

Did you know that many of the park’s winter trails, including destinations in the Bear Lake and Hidden Valley areas, are located within significant avalanche terrain?

Avalanches can be triggered by snowshoers, winter hikers, backcountry skiers, and even wildlife.

Interested in learning more about avalanche safety in the park? Visit our Avalanche Awareness webpage!

 
Snow-Covered Bear Lake Trail

NPS Photo

How Much Snow is in the Park?

The park has SNOWTEL monitors located near both Bear Lake and Wild Basin.

To learn more about the depth of snow near Bear Lake, click here

To learn more about the depth of snow located near Wild Basin, click here

 
View of park webcams

NPS

What Does the Park Currently Look Like? Check Out our Webcams!

Interested in seeing what conditions look like in the park? Rocky Mountain National Park has six live webcams showing views from different locations within the park.

 
Bobcat in Winter
Bobcat in winter

NPS Photo

Wildlife Viewing

The winter season creates some unique wildlife viewing opportunities. To learn more about how to safely view wildlife, please visit our Wildlife Viewing page.

Last updated: April 26, 2022

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1000 US Hwy 36
Estes Park , CO 80517

Phone:

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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