If you’ve ever dreamed of visiting the Rocky Mountains, you’ve likely heard of Estes Park. This beautiful town, located an easy 90-minute drive from Denver, is worlds away in terms of culture, lifestyle, and natural beauty.
Many people visit here with the intention of staying only a few days and end up moving here for the rest of their lives. Whether you’re a frequent visitor or hopeful resident, it’s helpful to know the ins and outs of this wonderful town. To provide some basic info, here are answers to four of the top frequently asked questions about this gateway to the Rocky Mountains.
What’s The Weather Like?
Officially, the climate in Estes Park is classified as a humid continental climate. What that means for your day-to-day life, though, is breathtakingly beautiful weather in the summer and warmer-than-expected weather in the winter. The highest average high is only 80-degrees, making the town an excellent escape from the typical summer heat across most of the country.
Though it lies at an elevation of over 7,500-feet, the winters still have an average high of around 40-degrees. Given the town’s location near tall mountains, most winter fronts have exhausted their moisture by the time they reach the town, meaning snow, while present most of the winter, doesn’t fall in the extreme amounts seen in some other cities. Basically, this town has beautiful weather year-round.
What Types of Activities Are Available?
Though it’s fairly compact, there are plenty of activities that we at Estes Park Team Realty know you’ll enjoy. For starters, you’ll be in the town that serves as the headquarters for Rocky Mountain National Park. With over 265,000 acres to explore, Rocky Mountain National Park is a nature lover’s dream that’s only 5-10 minutes away from your front door.
There’s also the aerial tramway, which takes you up to the top of Prospect Mountain, providing sweeping views of the surrounding landscape. On top of that, the downtown area boasts plenty of charming shops and local restaurants and breweries, ensuring you’re never far from something to do.
Plus, with water activities offered on Lake Estes and other nearby lakes, there is something for just about every type of adventurer. In the winter, there are plenty of winter sports activities, including skiing, snowboarding, and sledding. Ice climbing is another activity that continues to become more popular. Whatever you do when you come, don’t underestimate the amount of time you’ll want to spend here.
How Did The Town Get Its Start?
Estes Park has a long and storied history that owes largely to its natural beauty and great location among majestic mountain ranges. Native Americans were the first people to call this place their home, with European settlers not arriving until the 1850s. Joel Estes, from Missouri, founded the town in 1859. Not long after that, Griff Evans began to build up the tourism in the town by opening a dude ranch with various outdoor activities.
Another prominent figure in the town’s history is The 4th Earl of Dunraven and Mount-Earl. Establishing a resort with the town as its namesake in 1911, his was the first in a long line of excellent places to stay in the area, which today include Hotel Estes, Historic Crag’s Lodge, and many more.
Another significant development in the history of the town occurred in 1874 when Clara MacGregor began overseeing work to build a toll road from nearby Lyons. This road was far more passable than anything that had existed before, which made the city more desirable for tourists and businesspeople alike. Today, the town can be accessed from any direction, using I-25, Highway 7, Highway 36, CO 287, or US 34.
With the establishment of nearby Rocky Mountain National Park in 1915, the importance of the town was set in stone. Since then, the local area has been thrilling guests and residents alike with its spectacular beauty, excellent weather, and inviting hospitality.
What is The Town Known For?
There are many prominent aspects of the town that are worth bragging about. One that the team at Estes Park Team Realty always likes to brag about is the nearby Rocky Mountain National Park. As mentioned, this town serves as the headquarters for the park, meaning that this is the best place to start a comprehensive tour.
Another impressive feature of the area is the majestic Aspen trees. Though they provide a lush, green canopy during the summer, the real treat comes in the fall when the trees come alive in vibrant yellow color.
Yet another interesting feature, Trail Ridge Road, is currently the highest highway in the United States that runs in a continuous configuration. For fans of Stephen King, you might confuse a stay at The Stanley Hotel with a stay at the fictional Overlook Hotel from King’s book “The Shining,” as the Overlook was inspired by King’s real-life stay at the Stanley.
The best thing to do, though, is to come to the town and find your own favorite thing that stands out.
Homes for sale in Estes Park
Are you interested in moving to this beautiful mountain city? Take a look at some of the homes for sale in Estes Park right now!