"There is something for everyone in Rocky Mountain National Park" is a phrase that we’ve used a lot, but it couldn’t be more true. Especially for visitors in spring. Whether you want to hit the trail on a hike, try snowshoeing, watch the magnificent and abundant wildlife, or just take in the views of a wildflower-speckled meadow; spring is the time for you. No matter what interests you, spring is a fantastic time for adventures in Rocky Mountain National Park. Below is a list of the most popular activities in spring:
Hiking: Since there may still be snow and/or ice at higher elevations in the spring, the best hiking this time of year is in the lower valleys (the montane ecosystem). Waterfalls are typically rushing with snowmelt and wildflowers are blooming, making this one of the best times of year for hiking. The best trails in spring include: Cub Lake, Ouzel Falls, Fern Falls, Deer Mountain, Chasm Falls and East Inlet Trail.
Fishing: Spring is a great time of the year for fishing in the park. Snow is beginning to melt from the Continental Divide, bringing fresh water and an abundance of food into the lakes and rivers in the plains. Native greenback cutthroat and Colorado River cutthroat trout wait in the confluence for food to drift by, and this makes for a perfect spot to catch them. Ideal fishing locations in spring include: Black Lake, Loch Vale, Poudre Lake and Peacock Pool. Fishers over the age of 16 are required to have a Colorado Fishing License.
Wildlife Viewing: One of the most popular things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park is wildlife viewing. With herds of elk, big horn sheep, mule deer, and more elusive animals like moose, marmots, pikas and otters—it’s easy to get excited about all the wildlife. Spring is a fantastic time of year to spot wildlife. Most move down to the lower elevations of the plains during fall, winter and spring, before moving up to the alpine in the summer. In spring, you are likely to find wildlife grazing on the lush green plants of the lower valleys. This is also the time of year when most animals are birthing, so it is common to see elk calves and big horn sheep lambs in areas like Moraine Park and Horseshoe Park.
Wildflowers: Dominating the lower valleys in springtime, wildflowers begin to bloom in late-April and early-May. More than 5,000 wildflowers bloom in the Rockies, with each zone hosting different species. The best trails for wildflowers are Nymph Lake, Cub Lake, Ouzel Falls, and Ute Trail.