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Where The Wild Things Are

Rocky Mountain National Park is a wildlife lover’s paradise with a diverse range of wildlife that inhabits the park’s rugged landscape. From majestic elk to elusive mountain lions, there are plenty of opportunities to don your binoculars and spot animals in their natural habitat (elk: a lot, mountain lions: not so much).

The Moraine Park area is home to a large elk herd, making it a prime spot to view these iconic animals. Or check out the willow thickets along the Colorado River in the Kawuneeche Valley on the park’s west side for a chance to spot both elk and moose.

For those interested in birdwatching, take the Cub Lake Trail, an easy hike through a variety of ecosystems, including wetlands and dense forest. Keep your eyes peeled for the American dipper and northern pygmy owl.

And, finally, search for higher-elevation friends like marmots, pikas, and bighorn sheep in rocky areas, and on the alpine tundra along Trail Ridge and Old Fall River roads.

Visitors to RMNP should always remember to respect the animals and their habitats by keeping a safe distance. With a bit of patience and luck, wildlife sightings can be a powerful highlight of any trip to this incredible national resource.

—Ariella Nardizzi

Top: Courtesy Eleven Experience (x3). Bottom: Courtesy Visit Estes Park

It’s prime time to check out the fauna in Rocky Mountain National Park.

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