Day 2 of our Colorado Tour takes us to Rocky Mountain National Park. The park is located approximately 55 miles northwest of Denver in north-central Colorado and encompasses 265,461 acres of federal land, with an additional 253,059 acres of U.S. Forest Service wilderness adjoining the park boundaries. The Continental Divide runs generally north–south through the center of the park, with rivers and streams on the western side of the divide flowing toward the Pacific Ocean while those on the eastern side flow toward the Atlantic.
Rocky Mountain National Park is one of the highest national parks in the nation, with elevations from 7,860 to 14,259 feet, the highest point of which is Longs Trail. Trail Ridge Road is the highest paved through-road in the country, with a peak elevation of 12,183 feet. There are also sixty mountain peaks over 12,000 feet high which provide beautiful scenic vistas.
The park is also one of the most visited in the National Park System, ranking as the third most visited national park in 2015. In 2019, the park saw record attendance yet again with 4,678,804 visitors, a 44% increase since 2012.