When is Trail Ridge Road Open?

The road connects east & west sides of the park and is open from the end of May through October, weather permitting.
By Staff ,

Driving on Trail Ridge Road in September

Gloria Wadzinski

Trail Ridge Road is the highest continuous paved road in the United States, climbs to 12,183 feet and connects the towns of Estes Park and Grand Lake, Colo. Trail Ridge Road is generally open and ready for travel from the end of May through October. The road, which connects the west and east entrances of Rocky Mountain National Park, closes each year due to snow accumulation.

Call the park's Trail Ridge Road recorded status line at 970-586-1222 for current conditions. This message is updated with any changes in the road's status and is available 24 hours per day.

Spring Opening of Trail Ridge Road

The opening and closing of the road depends on the weather. In 2017, it opened Wednesday, May 31, after late snowstorms dumped three feet of snow in the park in mid-May. In 2012, after a memorably snow-filled winter, the road had a late opening on June 6. The road’s earliest opening ever occurred on May 7, 2002. The latest it opened on June 26, 1943. The road typically opens on or around Memorial Day.

On May 14, 2015, the eastbound plow met the westbound plow on Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park. 

NPS

Fall Closing of Trail Ridge Road

Rising more than 12,000 feet at its tallest point, Trail Ridge Road is the highest continuous highway in the U.S. The road is closed each fall—historically sometime in October—because of the difficulty of maintaining a safe path. In 2016, Trail Ridge Road officially closed for the season on Nov. 18.

Sizable snow-removal equipment renders both the Alpine Visitor Center and the Trail Ridge Store closed to pedestrians and their vehicles during winter.

Trail Ridge Road in October from the trail above the Alpine Visitor Center in Rocky Mountain National Park

Gloria Wadzinski

Related Article: Drive Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park