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02-09-2019, 02:38 AM   #1
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Rocky Mountain National Park

There is a chance I will be there in June 2019.....so.....where what and when folks ? Looking like it will be two (2) weeks minimum maybe three(3) spent on a loop from DEN (airport) to Frisco (where Alpine Girl works) and back to DEN. Rocky Mtn Nat Pk is on the list, but so is a run through Black Canyon of the Gunnison.

Your advice will be gratefully received.

02-09-2019, 03:47 AM - 1 Like   #2
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I wonder if @mattb123 could help some. I believe he lives in the Gunnison area.
02-09-2019, 04:11 AM   #3
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The east entrance of RMNP is right outside of Estes Park, a 35-40 mile drive slightly NW of Denver. Black Canyon NP is a 4-5 hour drive SW of Denver. Frisco is a straight shot on I-70 W of Denver. Adds up to a sizeable "loop" with just those three.
Breckenridge is about 9 miles west of Frisco. If it's open, you can catch Boreas Pass (dirt road which may be open, depending on how quickly the snow melts) outside of Breckenridge and connect with Highway 285 south and then take that to Highway 50 west, which will take you to Black Canyon, after another 2-3 hours of travel.
Feel free to PM me if you have any more questions.
02-09-2019, 08:53 AM   #4
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Yeah pretty far from rmnp to bcnp but probably a lot to see between those points. Boreas is one route and so is another dirt pass father West, Kebler that goes from Paonia to Crested Butte. if you prefer paved roads you could come up to 50 via Leadville on 24.
If you are coming this way for the canyon you should probably check out Crested Butte. It's pretty photogenic. Kebler is nicely graded and not a scary drive at all. That would be my recommend route.



02-09-2019, 10:04 AM   #5
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we discovered back in 91 that there was a quick way into Estes Park from Denver up the interstate and then west into Estes Park

and a slow scenic route two lane roads through the mountains

Estes Park itself was nice but seemed to be " touristy ". We actually camped at a KOA.

of course there is the " haunted " Stanley hotel in addition to the wildlife opportunities in the Rocky Mountain National Park and the town itself

Estes Park Hotel - The Historic Stanley Night Tour - The Stanley Hotel

good luck and have fun

in case you need one:

America the Beautiful Passes
The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass Series

America the Beautiful Passes (U.S. National Park Service)
02-09-2019, 04:11 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by K(s)evin Quote
The east entrance of RMNP is right outside of Estes Park, a 35-40 mile drive slightly NW of Denver. Black Canyon NP is a 4-5 hour drive SW of Denver. Frisco is a straight shot on I-70 W of Denver. Adds up to a sizeable "loop" with just those three.
Breckenridge is about 9 miles west of Frisco. If it's open, you can catch Boreas Pass (dirt road which may be open, depending on how quickly the snow melts) outside of Breckenridge and connect with Highway 285 south and then take that to Highway 50 west, which will take you to Black Canyon, after another 2-3 hours of travel.
Feel free to PM me if you have any more questions.
Thankyou K(s)evin, will check that out Appreciate your help.

---------- Post added 02-10-19 at 10:15 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by mattb123 Quote
Yeah pretty far from rmnp to bcnp but probably a lot to see between those points. Boreas is one route and so is another dirt pass father West, Kebler that goes from Paonia to Crested Butte. if you prefer paved roads you could come up to 50 via Leadville on 24.
If you are coming this way for the canyon you should probably check out Crested Butte. It's pretty photogenic. Kebler is nicely graded and not a scary drive at all. That would be my recommend route.
Thanks Matt. Will probably be in a Ford Escape awd, so will have a little bit of capability (daughters car who is a Copper Mtn patroller), otherwise will rent a Jeep. have no problem with unsealed roads, grew up on them over here. As far as time goes, we are open ended, within reason and have not seen this part of the US. Appreciate your help.

---------- Post added 02-10-19 at 10:17 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by aslyfox Quote
we discovered back in 91 that there was a quick way into Estes Park from Denver up the interstate and then west into Estes Park

and a slow scenic route two lane roads through the mountains

Estes Park itself was nice but seemed to be " touristy ". We actually camped at a KOA.

of course there is the " haunted " Stanley hotel in addition to the wildlife opportunities in the Rocky Mountain National Park and the town itself

Estes Park Hotel - The Historic Stanley Night Tour - The Stanley Hotel

good luck and have fun

in case you need one:

America the Beautiful Passes
The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass Series

America the Beautiful Passes (U.S. National Park Service)
Thanks Aslyfox, will spend a fair bit of time on Google maps plotting & planning all this out. Appreciate your help. Still have our pass from last year, valid to Sept.

Last edited by Mallee Boy; 02-09-2019 at 04:19 PM.
02-09-2019, 04:57 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mallee Boy Quote
Thankyou K(s)evin, will check that out Appreciate your help.

---------- Post added 02-10-19 at 10:15 AM ----------


Thanks Matt. Will probably be in a Ford Escape awd, so will have a little bit of capability (daughters car who is a Copper Mtn patroller), otherwise will rent a Jeep. have no problem with unsealed roads, grew up on them over here. As far as time goes, we are open ended, within reason and have not seen this part of the US. Appreciate your help. . . .
you are welcome but be sure to go with your questions to the members from Colorado, I have only visited once or twice but we are planning on being in Denver in June for some Cubs vs. Rockies games.

Go Cubs
02-09-2019, 10:23 PM   #8
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My wife really likes to stay in the Stanley Hotel (just the historic old part) in Estes Park. They have several other more modern options next to the original building. I have tried a few options to get there from just south of the Denver International Airport. You probably won't be able to avoid traffic and somewhat annoying roads for the first half of the trip no matter what route. I like going to Boulder and stopping for lunch. with that part behind me. Then we put the top down if we are driving the convertible and head west on 119, which climbs a couple of thousand feet to Nederland. Then north on 72 which is the Scenic Peak to Peak Byway or some similar name. That runs into 7 and 7 ends up in Estes Park. The whole thing is as much as 4 hours of driving but scenic and fun in a sports car. The temperature can drop 40F along the way, enough to rethink the convertible idea. The much faster way would be to take the E470 toll road almost immediately as you leave the airport, head north then west to I25, then north to SR66, then west to SR36, then northwest through Lyons and up into the mountains to Estes Park. I think there was some construction along this route after Lyons that is largely complete. The E470 toll is $4.65. Ask when you rent a car if/how you can pay the toll, because they will bill the car owner, probably after your return date.

We go up there around July 2 and it can get quite busy within RMNP at the main points of interest.

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