Planning a Vacation in the Rocky Mountains

A summer trip to the Rocky Mountains is an escape into one of the country’s most stunning natural areas. This spectacular mountain range stretches over 3,000 miles and stuns with towering peaks, glacial lakes and endless forests. It’s also a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, families and adventure seekers. Whether you’re traveling solo, with family or a group of friends, planning a vacation in the Rockies requires careful attention to detail. From airport options to transportation choices and deciding whether to rent a car, there are many considerations that must be made to ensure the perfect trip.

With hundreds of miles of hiking trails, ragged peaks and alpine lakes, Rocky Mountain National Park is an outdoor retreat with something for everyone. The most popular time to visit the park is from June through September when most of the snow has melted. But you can still enjoy the park in relative solitude throughout the spring and winter.

You’ll want to plan for crowds, especially during the peak summer season. Parking lots in scenic areas fill up before breakfast, and Trail Ridge Road is often jam-packed with minivans and RVs by 10 A.M. The best way to minimize congestion is to wake up early and hit the trails before the majority of tourists arrive. Or plan to enter the park through the entrances most used by locals, such as Old Fall River Road or Estes Park.

The national park has implemented a timed-entry-permit system during high season to control the number of visitors. Make sure you know how to obtain your permits before arriving at the park.

Once you’ve reached your destination, take some time to relax by a lake or on the water. The soothing sound of crystal clear water lapping at the shore is a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle of city life. If you’re looking for more than just relaxation, check out the water activities offered at Redfish Lake. From Lady of the Lake tours and Sunset Appetizer Cruises to kayak rentals and stand-up paddleboards, the possibilities are endless.

For a truly memorable vacation in the Rocky Mountains, you’ll need to get off the beaten path. A short train ride or driving distance from Vancouver, the Canadian Rockies are an awe-inspiring mountain paradise that’s brimming with towering peaks, turquoise glacial lakes and endless forests. Plan an overnight train trip or an extended road trip to experience this breathtaking mountain range. Alternatively, you can fly into the nearby Eagle Regional Airport in Gypsum, which offers direct flights from more than 150 destinations and provides an easier transition to your resort destination. The small airport has a cozy atmosphere and a convenient location, making it a great option depending on your departure point.