Rocky Mountain National Park is bringing back timed entry permits this Summer, starting May 28th, and we've got all the info you need to plan your trip! With the ever-growing amount of people visiting, as well as health concerns with Covid-19, reduced shuttle bus capacity, and residual fire impacts from 2020, these permits are necessary to keep the park running smoothly and safely.
This year there will be two types of reservations available. One will get you into any part of the park, including the ever-popular Glacier Gorge section. This is the Bear Lake Road Corridor Permit. This permit will be needed for entry to the park between 5am and 6pm. The second reservation will get you entry to all of the park except the Bear Lake Road Corridor. This permit will be needed to enter any area of the park excluding the Bear Lake Road Corridor from 9AM to 3PM.
You may be asking, what is so special about the Bear Lake Road Corridor? Well, it is one of the most visited areas of the park, and contains the Glacier Gorge and Bear Lake parking areas. Many popular trailheads are at these lots, giving you access to places like Alberta Falls, Emerald Lake, Mills Lake, Sky Pond, and more. If you want to hit up these trails make sure you book the permit that gives you access to the Bear Lake Road Corridor, as there will be another permit checking station here.
I'll do a little FAQ section here for quick reference:
Are these permits required on top of the normal entrance fee?
-Yes, these are timed entry permits that you will need on top of the normal National Park entrance pass.
When does this start?
-The first day you will need a timed-entry permit is May 28th. If your trip is any day before this, you will not need this permit, just a normal entry pass to National Parks.
When can I purchase these entry permits?
-It depends which month you are planning on visiting. The first round of permits for May 28th-June 30th will be released at 8AM Mountain Time on May 1st. The next release will be on June 1st at 8AM Mountain Time for permits during the month of July. July 1st at 8AM Mountain time permits will be released for the month of August. August 1st at 8AM Mountain Time they will release permits for the month of September. September 1st at 8AM the permits for October will be released.
I didn't get a pass in time for when I want to visit. Is there still hope?
-Yes, 25% of the permits are being held and released the day prior at 5PM. But these are expected to sell out real quick, so be online on time, and be fast!
Can I get in before 5AM?
-Yes, entering before 5AM is allowed, but no one will be manning the entry booths, so make sure you have your National Parks Pass already.
Where can I purchase these permits?
-Online at Recreation.gov
I have other questions!
-Send us a DM on our Instagram page and we'll do our best to help you out!