It took a little longer than we thought to get there, but we finally made it to Rocky Mountain National Park.
We tried to make the short journey from Denver to Estes Park on Saturday, but we ran into a lot of closed roads due to flooding. I knew there were some closed roads, but I didn’t anticipate the majority of them would be closed. I guess I was more focused on the immediate area around the park and not as much on getting there. After driving around for about two hours with little success, we headed home with the hopes of trying again.
Sunday we had much better luck. I finally found one route to Estes Park that was clear. It took double the time it would normally take, but we made it. Estes Park is a great mountain town. We made a quick stop at a farmers market, bought some kettle corn, and then headed into the park.
Our first stop inside Rocky Mountain National Park was lunch at Sprague Lake. We always try and pack a picnic lunch on these kinds of days. It was pretty cold and windy, so lunch didn’t last long.
Just down the road from Sprague Lake was our only hike of the day – Alberta Falls. It was about a two mile hike round trip, so that is as far as we usually try and take the kids. But the hike was worth it. We always enjoy a good waterfall, and with all of the rain we have gotten lately, Alberta Falls was flowing really strong.
Finally it was time to get in the car and head to the top of the mountains. One thing we were all looking forward to was seeing the snow. So we had to make a quick stop above the tree line to have a quick snowball fight.
We made other few quick stops along the way up, but it didn’t take us long to get to the Alpine Visitor Center. The elevation was 11,796 feet. We spent a little bit of time in the visitor center, but they had a lot of the usual activities closed. It won’t be long before they close the majority of Trail Ridge Road due to snow.
We eventually completed our visit of Rocky Mountain National Park by driving through the western entrance near Grand Lake. We finished our drive by going through Granby, Idaho Springs, and eventually back to Denver. It was a long day of driving, but Rocky Mountain National Park is one of my favorite places in the country. It was a good day!