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This is only in – you need a reservation to get into this popular national park.
After a successful year of testing the system in 2020, Rocky Mountain National Park will reintroduce its timed access system on May 28, 2021, just in time for summer. Park officials hope that timed entry will not only help reduce the crowds in the park, but will also help figure out how to distribute visitors to specific parking areas and starting points.
Entry reservations are required to enter the park all summer. Reservations for May 28th to June 30th can now be reserved. The next big release will be on June 1st to reserve a permit to enter the park for the month of July.
On July 1st, reservations are possible for the month of August and so on until October 2021.
Rocky Mountain National Park: Timed Entry Reservations
There are two options for entry permits: Rocky Mountain National Park and the Bear Lake Corridor. The Bear Lake Road Corridor permit (required between 5am and 6pm) includes access to the entire corridor and the rest of the park.
The second permit grants access to Rocky Mountain National Park except for the Bear Lake Road corridor (required between 9:00 am and 3:00 pm) Outside of these times, no admission reservation is required.
Bear Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park. Photo credit: Mary Murphy.
- An entry permit is required to enter any area of Rocky Mountain National Park.
- Reservations are based on 75-85% of the park’s total parking capacity, up from 60% in 2020.
- The reservation fee is USD 2 per day.
- Cyclists do not need an entrance reservation (parking pass fees still apply).
- Those with campsite reservations in the park automatically receive entry for the day of their arrival.
To make a reservation
Rocky Mountain National Park: Additional reservations
Camping at the Moraine Park Campground; Photo credit: Mary Murphy.
Due to COVID, RMNP campsites still only work at 40% capacity. This means that several loops and areas of the Glacier Basin and Moraine Park Campgrounds are closed. Other campsites in the park are not yet open.
“In 2020, Rocky Mountain National Park was the fourth most popular national park in the country,” wrote the NPS. If you’re planning a visit to the Rockies this summer, make sure to secure a reservation first!
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From Mary Murphy
Mary is based in GearJunkie’s Denver, CO office. She has degrees in English and Journalism and has been writing professionally for over four years. Her outdoor interests range from running to sport climbing, from landscape photography to pack paddleboarding. If she’s not writing, you can most likely find her on top of a fourteen or at a local bakery.