Hotel at a Glance: Gateway Inn
Located 1 mile from the western entrance of Rocky Mountain National Park, the Gateway Inn occupies a tranquil spot in Colorado’s high-country wilderness. The inn is a true family-run business—owners Tom and Debi built and designed the wooden lodge in 1999, and their daughter Lisa manages the property. With Rocky Mountain National Park surrounding the inn on three sides, it’s easy to stay connected to the great outdoors during your visit.
- Handmade log furniture can be found in each individually decorated guest room.
- Go snowmobiling: Snowmobiling is permitted on many city streets in Grand Lake, and Rocky Mountain National Park contains hundreds of miles of wilderness trails.
- Come back for happy hour in The Lounge from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. In addition to drink specials, you’ll find big-screen TVs and shuffleboard to welcome you back.
- Watch the sun set over nearby Shadow Mountain Lake from the inn’s back porch.
Grand Lake, Colorado: Western Gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park
Nestled beneath snowcapped peaks, the town of Grand Lake is known as the Western Gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park. The charming village, dotted with quaint cabins and summer homes, sits adjacent to Trail Ridge Road, a 43-mile route that winds through the park, providing glimpses of mountain wildlife and dazzling views that stretch to Wyoming.
Grand Lake was named after the largest natural body of water in Colorado, which hugs miles of shoreline just north of the hotel. Here you can angle for brown trout and mackinaw, or take to the waters on a pontoon boat. About a mile from the hotel, Grand Lake’s historical boardwalk evokes the Old West with rustic saloons, art galleries, and horse-drawn taxicabs.
The area is ideal for ice fishing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and other winter activities. Voted the Snowmobile Capital of Colorado by Sno West Riders, Grand Lake is one of the few towns anywhere that allows snowmobiles on city streets, even leaving the streets snow-packed to accommodate the popular winter vehicles.