Beaver Meadows Visitor Center

Alpine Visitor Center - digging out on May 23

Kids Activities

Snowshoeing at Bear Lake

International Migratory Bird Day

June 7, 2014 Events at Beaver Meadows Visitor Center

Celebrate International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) in Rocky Mountain National Park by participating in any or all of our weekend events!  On Friday, June 6, at 7:00 p.m. join local producer Nick Molle as he shows his documentary film "Birds Without Borders."  Over I50 species of birds share the ecosystems of Rocky Mountain National Park and Costa Rica.  Fifty are known to nest in Rocky and migrate to Costa Rica.  "Birds Without Borders" focuses on four of these species. Filmed on location in both countries, the story follows the research team as they attempt to locate and film each of the four birds in sometimes difficult situations.  The one hour film will be shown at Beaver Meadows Visitor Center and is free and open to the public.    

On Saturday, June 7, we offer two great events. In the morning, go on a bird walk in Rocky Mountain National Park!  Join us for an opportunity to learn more about migratory birds while exploring the park with experienced bird watchers. The event will begin at 8:00 a.m. at the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center.  After a short introduction, visitors and bird walk leaders will caravan into the park to view birds in a variety of habitats. The activity is free of charge, but park entrance fees will apply. This guided walk will have naturalists and expert birders help beginners identify birds; all ages and abilities are welcomed.  Bring warm clothes, water, good walking shoes, binoculars and a snack. The event will end at noon, but visitors are encouraged to continue their birding adventures throughout the day.   

The second event on Saturday, June 7, will be at 7:00 p.m. at the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center. Join our special guest speaker from Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory, Jason Beason. Jason, the Special Monitoring Projects Coordinator, has worked on a wide variety of projects involving birds in 13 western states. He has been involved with several bird migration research projects at Rocky Mountain National Park including Hermit Thrushes and Western Tanagers, and he helped place geolocators on Ospreys last summer to track their migrations. Founded in 1988, Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory is a Colorado-based nonprofit that conserves birds and their habitats through an integrated approach of science, education and stewardship. Their work spreads from the Rockies to the Great Plains, Mexico and beyond.  

International Migratory Bird Day is celebrated each spring across the United States and Canada. This special event recognizes the movement of nearly 350 species of birds from their wintering grounds in South America, Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean to nesting habitats in North America.  This year marks the 22nd anniversary of IMDB with the theme, "Why Birds Matter: The Benefits of Birds to Humans and Nature," sharing the many ways in which birds matter to the earth, to ecosystems, and to us!  

Some bird species provide practical solutions to problems, such as the need for insect and rodent control. Others disperse seeds, helping to revegetate disturbed areas. Others are pollinators, ensuring that we are graced with flowering plants, trees, and shrubs.  Beyond the utilitarian, birds are inspirations for the arts.  Celebrate birds with us and why they matter!

Weekday Shuttle Access Only for Bear Lake Road Begins May 28 - July 19

RMNP Road Reconstuction -- from 9am to 4pm No Private Vehicles & 20 minute delays

Bear Lake Road from approximately one mile southwest of Moraine Park Visitor Center to Bear Lake will be accessible by free shuttle bus only on weekdays from 9am to 4pm.    Private vehicles will be allowed both directions prior to 9am and after 4pm, and vehicles that make the 9am cutoff time may leave throughout the day.  Expect at least two 20 minute delays both directions through the construction area.  There will be no construction delays between Park & Ride and Bear Lake.  There may be night closures during the construction, but they will be announced at least two weeks prior to occuring and will only occur on weeknights.

Glacier Basin Campground will be closed this summer, and pull-off areas may be closed at times during the construction.  Moraine Park Visitor Center will be the Shuttle Bus Transfer point until July 19 and will have very limited parking.

Plan ahead - take the free Shuttle Buses.  Hike early, or hike late, and carpool!

Bear Lake Road was originally completed in 1928.  This $27.7M project upgrades Bear Lake Road from the junction with Trail Ridge Road to the Park & Ride, Glacier Basin Campground, covering 5.1 miles.  Significant retaining walls are being put in to improve safety and drainage, and a .9 mile section was rerouted away from Glacier Creek to prevent impacts to wetlands and riparian habitat.  Safety and winter snow removal will be enhanced by the new, wider road, and parking and pullouts improved.


Trail Ridge Road Opens for Summer on May 24, 2013

Highest Continuous Paved Road in the US

Trail Ridge Road opened on Friday May 24, 2013 for the summer season.  Last year the road opened early on May 14, but it historically opens for Memorial Day Weekend.   The earliest the road opened was May 7, 2002 and the latest on June 26, 1943.  It officially closed for the season last year on Oct. 17, 2012. 

National Park Service plow operators normally begin clearing the snow the middle of April.  Crews from the west side of the Park and crews from the east side of the Park move along the road and eventually meet at the Alpine Visitor Center.  This year plow operators encountered average snow drifts from 18 to 22 feet.  Much of the snow came in the early spring. The Park's backcountry still looks and feels like winter above 9,000 ft.

Due to heavy melting on the road during the day and freezing temperatures at night, visitors should plan for likely night closures in their travel plans.  Because weather conditions can change rapidly, park visitors are encouraged to call the Trail Ridge Road recorded phone line at 970-586-1222 for up to date road status changes.


Celebrate Archeology and Historic Preservation Month at Rocky Mountain National Park

Saturday, May 18 at 7 pm at Beaver Meadows Visitor Center

Rocky Mountain National Park will present “Discovering Rocky’s Historic Landscape: A Sense of Place” for Archeology and Historic Preservation Month, celebrated to highlight important historic resources that give meaning and a sense of place to communities.  The presentation is on Saturday, May 18 at 7:00 p.m. at the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center auditorium in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park has a long human history which is represented in its buildings and structures from Native American occupation until the present.  Learn how the National Historic Preservation Act protects the marks left on the landscape that tell the story of past generations.
Danielle Bonnici is a former seasonal interpreter and a University of Colorado Denver graduate student in Historic Preservation.  She will be accompanied by Karen Waddell, park cultural resources specialist.
For information about Rocky Mountain National Park please call the park’s Information Office at (970) 586-1206


Kids Activities on Earth Day - April 20

Every Day is Earth Day at Rocky Mountain National Park

Estes Park, CO April 2013 -

A special Earth Day event will be held Saturday, April 20, at the Fall River Visitor Center from 10am to 2:30 pm for families.  There will be an Earth Day Scavenger Hunt for Jr. Rangers, and an Arts & Crafts station to create Earth Day artwork and park staff and scientists will be on hand to share information. 

  • 10am - 1pm  Family Discovery Day Program
  • 10:30am - 12pm  Trash Pick-up Project (get Free Park Admittance for the day!)
  • 11am & 2 pm  Life on the Edge Program
  • 1pm - 4pm  Park Greenhouse Tours
  • 1:30pm  Story Time with a Ranger


Top 10 Reasons why Winter is the Best Time to Visit Rocky Mountain National Park

Winter in RMNP offers great opportunities to see wildlife and spectacular scenery without the crowds

Estes Park, CO February 2013 -
National Parks are increasingly becoming the most popular vacation ideas for families and adventurers.  But many people don't realize that winter is an ideal time to plan a visit to Rocky Mountain National Park.  Here's why:

  • Winter offers stunning mountain beauty without the summer crowds
  • Wildlife is abundant, and often easier to spot with a winter backdrop and tracks left in the snow
  • Snowshoeing and cross country skiing are fun ways to experience the backcountry of Rocky Mountain National Park
  • Ranger led snowshoe ecology walks are FREE (after paying the Park entrance fee)
  • Low elevations often have very little snow to navigate, so winter hikes are a simple way to experience the serenity of RMNP
  • Sledding is a fun tradition at the Hidden Valley area in Rocky Mountain National Park.  The sledding slope is contoured to enhance safety, and there's even a warming hut (open on weekends), and heated bathrooms (open daily)
  • Full Moon Walks with Park Rangers are especially stunning in the stillness of winter
  • Winter in RMNP is romantic - gorgeous sites, quite moments, and the warmth of a fire are a great recipe for love
  • Camping is a great winter activity, though often forgotten.  With the right clothing (layers!) and equipment, it can even be quite cozy!  Designated campgrounds are $14 per site/per night, and there is no charge for winter backcountry camping.

Kyle Patterson from the NPS says, "For many visitors, winter is their favorite season to enjoy Rocky Mountain National Park.  The park is less visited but still very much open and alive with activity.  Beautiful backcountry areas can be reached on snowshoes, skis, and at lower elevations - even with hiking boots!  Elk, coyotes, deer, snowshoe hares, and other wildlife remain active through the winter.  Their story is told by the tracks left in the snow.  For those visitors who are prepared, winter is an enchanting time to explore the Park."

Officials at RMNP remind folks that whenever visiting Rocky Mountain National Park to snowshoe, ski, or hike, stop by a park visitor center or call 970-586-1209 for current road and snow conditions.  Come enjoy Rocky Mountain National Park in the winter.  Visit our winter activities page for more information.


Exciting Website Upgrade Provides Best Online Resource for Hiking Trails in Rocky Mountain National Park receives a makeover that offers the most complete information on the web for hiking trails, outdoor activities, and learning opportunities for visitors to RMNP in Colorado.

Estes Park, CO January 2013 - A new year brings exciting changes to!  The new site design features access to hiking trail ratings and descriptions, so visitors can easily determine the distance, elevation change, and location of the hiking trails within Rocky Mountain National Park.  Sample hiking itineraries are suggested by local experts to make the planning as easy as clicking a mouse.  In addition, provides information on a variety of outdoor activities:  white water rafting, horseback riding, photography, and wildlife watching (to name a few).  You'll find everything in one place - lodging from campsites to luxury hotels, shuttle bus schedules, and terrific tips to make your trip a success.

"With over 130 different hiking trails listed, is the most comprehensive online source for information about hiking in RMNP.  Find trail suggestions by category (Best Easy Hikes, Favorite Family Trails, Winter Hikes, etc.) or by region of the Park," says Marisue Wells, spokesperson for the website.

For more information, contact

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