|Thursday, Sep 19, 2013|
Mop-up operations are underway, as emergency conditions ease at Rocky Mountain National Park. Some park services and roads reopened yesterday, September 18th, but managers stress that it will take some time for the park to return to normal operations. As conditions improve, additional roads, trails and facilities will open.
Traffic is again moving on Highway 7, the north-south Peak to Peak Highway running along the east side of Rocky Mountain National Park, following a week's worth of torrential rains. Three visitor centers are open, but many trails are closed. Trail Ridge Road, topping the Contental Divide at 12, 183 feet, has reopened to both east- and west-bound non-commercial traffic.
The following is a summary of the current situation:
Trail Ridge Road is open to both east- and west-bound visitor traffic. With Highway 7 now open to all traffic, commercial traffic is once again prohibited on Trail Ridge Road. The town of Estes Park is once again open and welcoming visitors.
At park entrance stations, open at Grand Lake, Fall River, and Beaver Meadows, entrance fees are temporarily waived. Visitor centers at Kawuneeche, Alpine, and Beaver Meadows visitor centers are open; the Fall River visitor center is closed for the year.
Hikers are urged to use caution throughout the park and obey trail closures–large landslides have occurred because of the rain saturated soils.
On the west side of the park, most trails are open for day use only; visitors should check trailhead signs for any additional information. Longer trails that cross the Continental Divide are open only to the Divide as trail travel to the east side is still closed.
All trails on the east side of Rocky Mountain National Park remain closed. As weather conditions improve, trails will be assessed for damage and slope stability. Of special note: Longs Peak, Wild Basin, Lily Lake, Lumpy Ridge, McGraw Ranch/Cow Creek, and their associated trails are CLOSED. Please help park staff focus on recovery efforts by honoring these trail closures.
All of Bear Lake Road is closed. Upper Beaver Meadows Road remains closed. The Fall River Road is open, but the Old Fall River Road is closed.
The Intermountain Incident Management Team and the staff of Rocky Mountain National Park would like to thank everyone for their support and patience as they continue to assess park conditions. For Rocky Mountain National Park information, call the park’s Information Office at 970-586-1206.