- Make it a point to take a side trip to Steamboat Springs when visiting Rocky Mountain National Park
- Only an hour and 53 minutes from Rocky Mountain Park
- There are plenty of dining and accommodation choices in town
- Go rafting on the Yampa River
- Luxuriate in the town hot springs
Located at 7,000 feet elevation in the Rockies, Steamboat Springs is an internationally known ski resort and year-round vacation destination.
Steamboat lies in the upper valley of the Yampa River at Rabbit Ears Pass, on US Highway 40, west of the Continental Divide.
You’ll find a wide array of restaurants, bars and grills, cafés and diners in Steamboat. From pizza and salads to burritos and seafood, the choices are seemingly endless. Experience fine dining in a historic building, eat while surrounded by lovely gardens or enjoy a Szechwan or Mandarin specialty meal. You won’t go hungry here!
Accommodations in Steamboat Springs range from traditional motel and hotel chains to condominiums, townhomes, cabins or chalets. Stay in luxurious surroundings or find a comfortable economy room.
Steamboat is known as “Ski Town USA” so you can expect some fantastic skiing. With 164 trails and nearly 3,000 skiable acres, you’ll find it no surprise that Steamboat is a winter destination rated high among snow lovers and skiers.
There are many trails to explore around Steamboat. One you could try is the Gilpin Lake Loop, a 9.8-mile trek with a 2,300-foot elevation gain. The trail is well maintained, however and thus easy to navigate. This is a full day hike and lets you experience the scenic beauty of Gilpin Lake. There are a number of Mount Zirkel Wilderness Trails that take you into the rugged beauty of the Colorado Rockies. They range from easy to strenuous. The Sarvis Creek Trail introduces you to the Gore Range, with rolling mountains and gorgeous forest.
You’ll find incredible whitewater rafting on the Yampa River at Steamboat Springs. The Yampa is not dammed and this makes it ideal for rafting or kayaking. You can take a short trip or go for several days.
- Old Town Hot Springs
This hot springs boasts multiple pools and two exciting slides. It’s a great break after your mountain adventures.
- Strawberry Park Hot Springs
Just outside of town you’ll find Strawberry Park Hot Springs with its natural rock features. There are two pools to enjoy.
- Yampa River Festival
On the first weekend of June each year, Steamboat Springs presents the Yampa River Festival, with boating competitions, downriver races and a kayak rodeo. It’s something you won’t want to miss.
To get to Rocky Mountain Park from Steamboat Springs, Colorado, get on US Highway 40 in town and drive 76 miles to US Highway 34, which will take you to Grand Lake, the western gateway to Rocky Mountain Park. It is a distance of 94 miles and takes about an hour and 53 minutes.