April 15, 2017 – April 16, 2017
Each year, Rocky Mountain National Park and the National Park Service offer fee-free days in honor of national holidays or special Park Service celebrations.
In 2017, these days offer free entry:
- January 16 – Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
- February 20 – Presidents’ Day
- April 15 – 16 and 22 – 23 – Weekends of National Park Week
- August 25 – National Park Service Birthday
- September 30 – National Public Lands Day
- November 11 – 12 – Veterans Day Weekend
If you are planning to visit during the fee-free entry days, here are some tips for visiting during those times!
- Avoid the crowds: The park can fill up really fast, especially at popular trailheads, so avoid the crowds and parking problems by either going early in the morning (we mean well before 9 a.m. in the summer) or waiting until late afternoon. Of course, during the summer months you can always catch a shuttle to the popular trails if you don’t mind not parking at the trailhead.
- Plan around school: If you can make it for the mid-week fee-free days, you may see fewer crowds as kids are in school or families can’t get away for a mid-week, off-season vacation. The winter and early fall dates tend to see less traffic with kids back in school.
- Pick one trailhead to explore: If you are lucky enough to find parking, pick a trailhead and stick to it! Many have connections to other trailheads or there are a variety of trails with various levels of difficulty off of the same trailhead.
- Prepare for changing weather: With the park’s high elevation, the weather can change in an instant. Even if you’re visiting in the spring or summer, you have to prepare for cooler weather and potential storms. Pack warm, water repellant layers for your day in the park and be sure to carry a lot of water with you.
- Hike in the morning, drive in the afternoon: Get your hiking in early and you can spend the rest of the day exploring the park along a scenic drive route and getting your photos taken with stops at the pullouts.
Another great benefit of visiting the park for some of the off-season dates means you’ll find more low-cost lodging near the park, making it an affordable little getaway to explore the park!
April 20, 2017
Location: 2515 Tunnel Road, YMCA of the Rockies, CO
Time: 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Come to the 33rd Annual Taste of Estes sponsored by the Quota Club of Estes and sample items from over 30+ local restaurants!
- March 2, 2017 – March 30, 2017
- Recurring weekly on Thursday
- Time: 4:30 PM to 7:30 PM
The Dine Around is back again this year! Every Thursday night in March from 4:30-7:30 area restaurants participate in the community wide Dine Around Event. These restaurants offer a $5 tasting plate and participants ‘Dine Around’, often visiting 3-4 restaurants in one evening, trying out the offerings.
- 341 Moraine Ave
- Estes Park, CO 80517
- Ph: (303) 447-2804 | TF: (800) 836-4008
Colorado Mountain School is Colorado’s premiere mountain guide service, offering climbing and hiking outings from half-day family trips to international expeditions. We have been Rocky Mountain National Park’s exclusive technical climbing concessionaire since the Park’s creation in 1915. Our mission is to provide unparalleled customer service and world class climbing and instruction, while setting the standard in professional guiding. CMS is the largest guide service in Colorado, is accredited by the American Mountain Guides Association, and has more AMGA certified guides than any other guide service in the state. We offer world-class rock climbing and hiking for all ability levels in the Estes Park Valley. For first timers and beginner climbers and hikers, our outings are designed to provide you with a wonderful experience in the mountains. Whether you want to push your limits on a steep rock face or take casual stroll through a pristine meadow, our guides will give you an experience that you and your family will remember forever. CLIMB: Estes Park offers world-class rock climbing for those of all backgrounds. A wide variety of routes, at all levels of difficulty, will provide an appropriate challenge for every member of your group or family. HIKE: Explore the trails of Rocky Mountain National Park with a professional mountain guide. We will tailor your outing to meet your group’s wants and needs while leading you up some of the area’s most iconic peaks and scenic trails. Join by yourself, or sign up the whole family!
Estes Park Events Complex
- March 18, 2017
- Location: 1125 Rooftop Way, Estes Park Events Complex, CO
- Phone: (303) 304-9159
- Time: 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Join us to jump start your wellness this season, integrate new ideas into your existing fitness routine, and learn more about how to get involved in the incredible sports fitness, and wellness opportunities in the Estes Park community.
Check out our variety of vendors from across the Estes Park sports & fitness community, and find out what they have planned for Fall, Winter, and beyond! The expo also features sports and fitness vendors from the Front Range as well.
Engage with our expert speakers and benefit from their ideas and tips on a wide variety of sports and fitness related interests.
Admission is free to the public, and all ages are welcome!
Creating a Lifetime of Memories
Simply put, Estes Park caters to families. In the village, in Rocky Mountain National Park and in the grand spaces in between, opportunities abound for moms and dads, sons and daughters, grandmothers and grandfathers to do things together. It could be something as modest as sharing an ice cream cone or as monumental as catching a first fish. A mix of man-made amusements-slides, zip lines, miniature golf, go karts and more-complements natural fun-wildlife, mountains, lakes and forests, ensuring everyone finds something of interest to share.
In a place as scenic as Estes Park, it makes sense that families enjoy each other outdoors. And they can be as active as they like. Hikes, short and long, show off the area, including Longs Peak, Lake Estes and Twin Owls. Strings of horseback riders wend along dirt trails through Roosevelt National Forest. Youngsters giggle with delight while bicycling around Lake Estes, perhaps racing cousins or even parents. Go on a treasure hunting adventure finding local geocaches. On a scenic drive, families might play a game of eye spy, peering into open green meadows for a glimpse of wildlife (often elk) while sharing stories and admiring the surrounding towering peaks. Even a simple picnic in one of the village parks makes a great way to bring families together.
Indoors, too, families make memories together. Dressing up in vintage western wear, they pose for portraits. Or, they might visit one of the area museums to get acquainted with regional art, history and the land. Even while shopping, families gather to watch glass-blowing demonstrations. For a more active outing, they might try rock climbing inside at one of the highest rock-climbing gyms in northern Colorado. The gym welcomes people who have never before tried climbing as well as veterans who have been doing it for years.