Pros: high altitude scenery, great hiking, good wildlife viewing, very nice campground
Cons: crowded in some of the most popular areas..but still worth it
I visited this park last year and i was fortunate to spend about 7 days there. This is a small park but it deserves a full length visit to truly appreciate all it has to offer.
We stayed in glacer basin campground which is a very nice campground that i would definatally stay at again. The campsites were spaced out very well so it was not to crowded. There was also a nice ranger program every which was always a joy to visit after an evening of cooking and drinking some beer. This campground is also very conviently located near the shuttle bus that is required to take to do some must do hikes while in the park. like dream and emerald lake, along with the timberline falls hike that includes sky pond and loch lake and lake of glass. These are some must do hikes that are in the park. The only problem is that those hikes are a little crowded. But the crowds are worth the beauty that those hikes have to offer. Timberline falls is one of my favorite day hike spots that i have ever been to during my extensive travels that have included a lot of the country.
Anouther hike we did in the park was the hike to the summit of longs peak. This was an amazing hike that was about 16 miles. If you want to do this hike be prepared to wake up very early in order to finish it before the rainstorms come. When i say early i mean be at the trailhead by 3am. we were there by 5am and we were one of the last people that got there to start this amazing hike. this hike can be crowded at spots but the reward of the crowds again is well worth it in order to reach the 14,255 foot summit. The climbing is challenging and is almost 5,000 foot elevation change again this effort is well worth it to reach the summit. All and all this climb is amazing and opens up to non technical climbers in early augost and if you are in the physical shape to do it you must.
anouther hike we did was a hike that was pretty much make your own route to the summit of 3 mountains in one day. These mountains are mt chapin, mt chiquita, and ypsilon mt. two of these mountains are above 13,000 feet and the crowds were pretty much non egsistant. We saw a heard of elk on the side of one of the mountains. This hike is some of the easiest hiking to reach very high country at a total round trip of 7-8 miles which you will feel a scence of solitude.
anouther day hike we did was the hike to little yellowstone and lu lu city. this hike is a great change up to all the other hikes we did. The elevation is not quite as high nor is this area of the park as widly visited so the trail will be experinced with not to many other visitors. I recomend this hike for familys with kids that are a little older and in shape along with people that will be staying in the park for a while.
Anouther hike we did was a one night backpack. This backpack should prabably be done in 2 nights but we did it in one. It was the north inlet and toutonau loop. This is the longest loop trail in the park and is a great backpacking destination. The crowds on this hike are not all that bad and the scenery is top notch. i would reccomend this hike to anyone that is looking for a nice loop backpack during there stay in rmnp.
This park is just an amazing place. The driving is excellent and the wildlife viewing is also great. We saw tons of elk on the trail along with the roads. We also saw some big horn sheep. The one thing that you would be lucky to see here is bear because there are only about 35 bears or so in the park which was a suprise to me.