What Is It? Rocky Mountain National Park is also a wildlife lover’s paradise, home to thousands of elk and mule deer, along with marmots, moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, and the occasional black bear.
Why Do It? The east side of the park is generally the best area to spot a moose, where they’re typically seen near ponds, lakes, and areas with willows. Just keep in mind that these magnificent animals may tend to move slowly while eating their way through meadows, but they can actually run over 30 miles per hour – and, weigh up to 1,500 pounds. You’re pretty much guaranteed to see elk, and plenty of them, they’re just about everywhere, spending much of their time at or above the treeline in the summer, and in lower elevations during the rest of the year. The most popular time to view them is during the fall rut, or mating season.
Good to Know: The park’s impressive large animal population makes it one of the top wildlife-watching destinations in the country, but there is much more to see, with nearly 60 other species of mammals and nearly 300 recorded bird species.