Rocky Mountain National Park in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains features majestic mountain views, mountain lakes, a variety of wildlife, and varied climates and environments—from wooded forests to mountain tundra. The park is located northwest of Boulder, Colorado, and includes the Continental Divide and the headwaters of the Colorado River.
The lowest elevations in the park are montane forests and grassland. Ponderosa pine dominates on the drier eastern side of the park. At higher elevations Douglas fir trees are found. Above 9,000 feet (2,700 m), the montane forests give way to the subalpine forest with Engelmann spruce and subalpine fir trees. Above tree line, at approximately 11,500 feet (3,500 m), trees disappear and the vast alpine tundra takes over. Streams have created lush riparian wetlands across the park. In the higher alpine areas, one can find yellow-bellied marmots and pikas. Larger mammals include elk, bighorn sheep, black bears, mountain lions, mule deer, and moose. During the fall, visitors often flock to the park to witness the elk rut.