Backpacking in Rocky Mountain National Park

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Hiker on the Longs Peak trail

Hiker on the Longs Peak Trail

There will be temporary closures in some backcountry campsites. Please contact the backcountry office at (970) 586-1242 for updated information on the status of backcountry campsites.There are two Backcountry Offices within Rocky Mountain National Park. Permits and information are available at both offices. Phone 970-586-1242, seven days a week 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

On the east side of the park the Backcountry Office is located next to the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center.

On the west side of the park the Backcountry Office is located in the Kawuneeche Visitor Center.

The online Backcountry Camping Guide ( contains information on how to plan a trip, obtain a backcountry/wilderness permit, use the trails, set up camp, hike in a cross-country area, and care for the backcountry/wilderness. It also details the range of opportunities for camping in the backcountry/wilderness of Rocky Mountain National Park: designated sites (individual and group), stock sites, cross-country areas, bivouac areas (for technical climbers only) and winter areas.

It is your responsibility to know and follow all backcountry rules and regulations. Please read the Guide through in its entirety and browse other sections of the Backcountry Camping section that fit your needs.

We also recommend that you visit these topics in the Planning Your Visit section of the park site: High Country Hazards, Weather and Climate, >Leave No Trace, and Fishing. Please call (970) 586-1206 for general information about the park.

You may use your credit card to order any of the following publications by phoning the Rocky Mountain Nature Association at 800-816-7662 or visiting its web site,

  • Trails Illustrated Topographic Map of Rocky Mountain National Park.
  • Hiking Rocky Mountain National, Dannen.

There are many other excellent sources on backcountry/wilderness hiking and camping. Take the time to learn Leave No Trace principles, how to backpack safely, and to how to care for the environment.


Aerial view of the city of Estes Park at the east entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park

Where to Stay at Rocky Mountain National Park

Plan your perfect vacation now using our tips on the best hotels, cabins and camping in and around Rocky Mountain National Park

Starry night at Moraine Park Campground in Rocky Mountain National Park

Where Should I Camp in Rocky Mountain National Park?

A personalized guide to help you decide where to spend the night, from car camping paradise and remote backcountry sites to RV heaven.

RV on Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park

5 RV Tips for Rocky Mountain National Park

Explore the majestic Rockies in your home on wheels with these tips to help you choose where to camp, how to prepare and what to do with your pets.

Rocky Mountain National Park Flooding

The rain in Rocky Mountain National Park and the surrounding areas just keeps coming. And with flood warnings in effect all along the Front Range, Rocky Mountain National Park has been closed to all recreational use.

Fishing at Lily Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park

Fishing in Rocky Mountain National Park

With four main species of fish, more than 40 fishable lakes, and 25 alpine streams, casting a line is almost sacrilegious.

Grosbeak bird

Birdwatching in Rocky Mountain National Park

Since Rocky Mountain National Park's creation in 1915, 280 species of birds have been spotted throughout the park and surrounding regions.

Shuttle bus in Rocky Mountain National Park

Shuttle Buses in Rocky Mountain National Park

Skip the traffic and enjoy the ride on one of the many shuttle buses around Rocky Mountain National Park including options from Estes Park and Grand Lake.

Sun setting over cabins at River Run RV Resort near Granby, Colorado

River Run's Rocky Mountain Resort

Park your RV or stay in a cabin or villa rental, Airstream, Conestoga wagon or campsite at this new resort just 20 minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park.

Alpine Visitor Center in Rocky Mountain National Park

Visitor Centers in Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park visitor centers offer a variety of services, from gift shops, bookstores, guided tours, and more.