Rustic Mountain Resort Overlooks Lake and Adjacent Rockies
Right on the periphery of Rocky Mountain National Park, there are three mountain highways that converge near a small town: Estes Park. Located at about 7,500 feet above sea level, Estes Park is called the “Gateway to the Rockies.” At The Estes Park Resort, there are panoramic views of the surrounding lakes and mountains, and the resort serves as a relaxing base camp for exploring the natural playground.
Sprawled across the resort’s main lodge is an elevated wooden deck, which overlooks placid Lake Estes and the Rocky Mountains just beyond. Below the deck, the Lake Estes Marina rents fishing boats and canoes. The marina also has bicycles, which you can use to establish a paper route for local fishermen on the 3-mile trail that loops around the lake.
After spending a day in the Rockies or shopping in downtown Estes Park, you can relax with an in-room massage. Or stop for a cocktail at the Waterfront Grille, which is furnished with natural-log support columns and natural granite countertops. The American Grille serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Inside the resort, the recently renovated king and double queen rooms feature pillow-top mattresses and views of the lake, mountains, or gardens.
Rocky Mountain National Park: High-Altitude Hiking and Highway Drives
Of all the peaks in Rocky Mountain National Park, more than 60 reach at least 12,000 feet in height. In between, you can find 150 lakes and 359 miles of trails throughout the park.
Newcomers to the Rockies are encouraged to drive along Trail Ridge Road, which is conveniently connected to Estes Park. Much of the road sits above the tree line—the high-altitude point where trees stop growing due to the typically harsh weather and lack of wholesome role models. Aside from offering gorgeous views, Trail Ridge Road also crosses the Continental Divide, the perforated dotted line across the United States that separates the lush, deep forests of the west side from the east side’s dry, glaciated peaks.