Rocky Mountains (USA) - Impressive Mountain World and Outdoor Paradise
The Rocky Mountains fascinate with unique natural beauty and an impressive landscape. Lovers of nature and outdoor fans will lose their hearts here in summer and winter. Various resorts with great spa, shopping and culinary facilities will make your stay a worthwhile experience.
Geography - North America's greatest mountain range
The Rocky Mountains, short "Rockies", consist of folded rocks and are the greatest mountain range in North America. They extend from the state of New Mexico to Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Idaho and Montana to Canada. Therefore, these states are also called the "Mountain States". The highest peak of the Rockies is Mount Elbert (4,401 m) in Colorado. Most mountains, however, are between 2,000 and 3,000 metres high. Montana still contains mountains which are covered in glaciers. You only find bigger cities like Salt Lake City and Denver at the foothills of the Rockies but there are several small and bigger resorts which have specialised in tourism. Examples are Vail, Aspen, Keystone, Breckenridge, Park City, Deer Valley, Canyons, Rock Springs and Jackson. The Rocky Mountains have typical mountain climate with warm, dry summers and cold, wet winters. The snow is often several metres high in the cold season.
Nature - Experiencing wonderful national parks
The impressive mountain world of the Rocky Mountains fascinates with endless vastness, crystal clear lakes, rushing rivers, great forests, snowy peaks and several of the USA's most beautiful national parks. The best-known of the region's 22 national parks are the Yellowstone National Park with numerous geysers and hot springs, the Grand Teton National Park, the Rocky Mountain National Park, the Glacier National Park and the Mesa Verde National Park. They all captivate travellers with their unique, breathtaking landscape and their distinct flora and fauna. With a bit of luck, you spot a herd of deer, buffaloes or feral horses. Depending on the region, you may also see elks, pumas, bears and bison but you should do this from a safe distance. The vast forests are vegetated by Dougla firs, American aspen, white firs, ponderosa pines, white spruces and Rocky Mountain bristlecone pines. A true highlight are the Maroon Bells. They are the most frequently photographed mountains in North America together with the lake they are reflected in. Other worthwhile attractions are the Colorado National Monument, the Dinosaur National Monument, the Glenwood Springs and the Strawberry Park Hot Springs. The latter two are known for their hot thermal springs.
Experience - Enjoying the resorts
Besides the breathtaking landscape of the Rockies which attract lovers of nature, many travellers enjoy the resorts. They offer a great number of conveniences such as spa facilities, various shopping facilities from small shops to noble boutiques and first-rate gastronomy. Celebrities spend their winter holiday here for a reason. Lots of concerts, aprés-ski parties and athletic competitions take place here. Some towns even have interesting sights. Vail, for example, contains the Colorado Ski and Snowboard Museum and the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, the highest situated botanical garden in the USA. Other worthwhile museums are the Gunnison Pioneer Museum in Gunnison, the Museum of the Mountain West in Montrose, the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody and the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trails Interpretive Center in Great Falls.
Activities - Leisure fun in every season
The Rocky Mountains are a paradise for all outdoor fans. You can go hiking, climbing, mountaineering, mountain biking and camping in the mountains in spring, summer and autumn. The wild rivers invite you to go canoeing, rafting or fishing. In addition, you can go boating on several lakes. Other popular activities are golfing, bird watching and zip-lining. Holidaymakers can see the wonderful landscape from above on a balloon flight or on the back of a horse or go on a tour with a motorcycle. In winter, the Rocky Mountains attract a great number of tourists because they accommodate the USA's greatest and best winter sports areas. Every winter sports fan gets their money's worth here. Skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, tubing, ice skating and rides on a snowmobile are only a few of the many activities which are possible in the resorts.
Holidaymakers who want to visit the Rocky Mountains can choose between several airports. It depends on which state you want to arrive in. You should fly to Denver for trips to Colorado, to Salt Lake City for Utah, to Jackson for Wyoming and to Bozeman for Montana. At the airports, you can rent a car and continue your journey to your desired destination.
There is a lot to see and do in the Rocky Mountains. Its diverse landscape, which is apparent from the different national parks, and the countless opportunities of being active create a memorable travel adventure. Although the mountain range is isolated, travellers do not have to go without luxury, delicacies, spas or shopping facilities here.