I'm active and in decent shape and not looking to experience a place just through a bus window. I'm happy to slow down on the trail, soak it in and breathe in the fresh air.
Walking: 2-3 hours per day on gentle-gradient trails.
Other activities: On these trips, you'll be taking part in a range of other activities that focus less on building up a sweat and more on enjoying the finer things in life.
Activity Level 2
On the Move
Sure, I own some hiking boots, they're even worn in, but they don't go on long trips. I like my creature comforts and I like to give a range of activities a go.
Walking: 2-4 hours per day on gentle to moderate gradient trails. No multi-day hikes.
Biking: 1-3 hours, cruisy rides achievable by anyone, even first-timers.Kayaking: 1-3 hours, entry-level sea kayaking with specialist guides and stable boats.
Other activities (i.e. snorkeling): Always optional and very little exertion required. A highlight for many!
Activity Level 3
Step It Up
I love an active vacation. Engaging in a challenging activity with a difficult goal, such as reaching a summit, is exactly what I need to unwind in the evenings.
Hiking: Typically, 3-6 hours per day on well-formed backcountry trails. Expect some significant gradient inclines and declines.
Altitude: Your trip may include some moderate altitude areas, though these don't form the focus of the trip and are generally manageable.
Biking: 1-3 hours on well-formed paths or roads where you can expect some hills with moderate climbs and descents.
Kayaking: 1-3 hours, entry-level sea kayaking with specialist guides and stable boats.
Other activities (i.e. caving): Always optional and very little exertion required. A highlight for many!
Activity Level 4
I'll let my trusty guides sweat the small things, so I can focus on my goal. Getting to the top, reaching the end, achieving my dreams! Sure, it'll be tough, but the views will be worth it.
Hiking / Trekking: Typically, 4–6-hour hikes with options for more, sometimes with limited or no vehicle support and nearly always with ascents and descents.
Altitude: Some trips at this level will reach a significant altitude. We are here to help you manage that and make your experience one to cherish for a lifetime.
Biking & Kayaking: If one, or both, of these activities are 'your thing,' there are trip options in this range, allowing you to be on two wheels or with a paddle in your hand for most of the day.
Activity Level 5
The Upper Limit
I'm ready to put in the hard work to reap the rewards. I'm a seasoned adventurer, not afraid to get my boots wet.
Trekking & Altitude: This is classic trekking, at altitude. Some might even call it 'expedition-style.' We've had folks from all walks of life achieve their dreams on our grade 5 trips, so if you're in for a challenge get in touch to find out if this is for you.
Enjoy the diversity of the Colorado Rockies as you hike, kayak, raft and zipline Rocky Mountain National Park, Breckenridge, and Garden of the Gods.
Explore three unique regions of the Colorado Rockies on this six-day adventure. In Rocky Mountain National Park we will traverse Trail Ridge Road, hike to Emerald and Haiyaha alpine lakes, and go horseback riding to see all this park has to offer. On our way to Breckenridge, enjoy a waterfall hike and a half-day float trip on the Colorado River. Then it is time to see the region from new heights while zip lining before we head underground for a tour of Cave of the Winds. To top off the week is a walk in the Garden of the Gods surrounded by larger-than-life red rock formations.
Download This Itinerary
Get a print-friendly PDF version of this itinerary - you will also get a copy in your inbox!
Rocky Mountain National Park Adventure ~ Itinerary
Day 1Pick-up, explore Rocky Mountain National Park, Trail Ridge Road, and Estes Park
Day 2Hike to Emerald and Haiyaha Lakes
Day 3Hike Adams Falls and Raft the Upper Colorado River
Day 4Zip Lining and Gondola Ride
Day 5Kayak the Dillon Reservoir, visit the Cave of the Winds
Day 6Explore the Garden of the Gods
Pick-up, explore Rocky Mountain National Park, Trail Ridge Road, and Estes Park
Bright and early, your Colorado adventure begins as you journey west to Estes Park, the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park. Get your first taste of pristine mountain air on a short hike among wind-sculpted rocks and sweeping views of the surrounding mountains. In the afternoon, enjoy a scenic 2-hour horseback ride into the park as we follow the Fall River to the base of Deer Mountain. Enjoy dinner tonight in Estes Park at one of our favorite restaurants.
Ridgeline Hotel - Estes Park (Lunch, Dinner)
Hiking: 2 Miles (3.2 km)
Hike to Emerald and Haiyaha Lakes
This morning we begin our hiking journey through the aspen and ponderosa pine groves. We will pass Nymph Lake filled with pond lilies and then along the shores of Dream Lake through the Tyndall Gorge. We follow Tyndall Creek as we reach Emerald Lake with fantastic views of Flattop Mountain. After a scenic picnic lunch, traverse the famed Trail Ridge Road, which forms the highest continuous highway in America. This celebrated "Roof of the Rockies" offers views of massive peaks while you get an up-close look at the unique tundra ecosystems on a short hike at one of the highest points in the park. We end our day in the quaint town of Grand Lake.
Gateway Inn, Grand Lake (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Hiking: 3-4 Miles (4.8-6.4 km)
Hike Adams Falls and Raft the Upper Colorado River
As the world awakens around you, find yourself enjoying breakfast along the shores of Grand Lake, just outside Rocky Mountain National Park. Feeling invigorated for another fine day ahead, you’ll then head straight out for a 1-mile hike to Adams Falls, where water twists and turns between pine tree-laden boulders. Another scenic drive is on tap as we make our way west for our rafting trip on the Upper Colorado River covering 5 miles of class II rapids. Tonight, enjoy an evening on your own in the picturesque town of Breckenridge.
DoubleTree Breckenridge (Breakfast, Lunch)
Hiking: 1 Mile (1.6 km) Rafting: 2-3 Hours
Zip Lining and Gondola Ride
This morning we head up above 11,000 feet for a zip lining adventure that will provide you with panoramic views of Mt. Ebert and Mt. Massive, two of the tallest peaks in North America and also keep eyes open for possible resident wildlife. We return to Breckenridge to for a gondola ride over the Cucumber Gulch Preserve to get up above 11,000 feet once again this time with views across the Continental Divide. After a full day of adventure, we will enjoy a wonderful meal together in town.
Hiking: 1-2 Miles (1.6 - 3.2 km) Zip Lining: 2 Hours
Kayak the Dillon Reservoir, visit the Cave of the Winds
A morning kayaking adventure kicks off the day with an easy paddle around the Dillon Reservoir around a number of islands for great opportunities to spot bald eagles, beavers, muskrats, and mule deer. We say goodbye to Breckenridge and continue our journey east to Colorado Springs where we head underground at Cave of the Winds on a guided tour of 15 rooms each with unique history and beautiful rock formations. Share your favorite stories from the week over our farewell dinner together.
TownePlace Suites Garden of the Gods (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Kayaking: 2 Hours
Explore the Garden of the Gods
Finish your exploration of the Colorado Rockies with an icon of the region, Garden of the Gods. Spend the morning meandering amongst the red rock formations before we head back to Denver for afternoon flights home.
On the first day of the trip we can either pick you up from the Homewood Suites Denver Airport at 7:30am or the Springhill Suites Denver Airport at 7:45am. You are welcome to book your pre-trip stay at either of these hotels directly or any other hotel in Denver, though you must make your own way to one of the two pick-up points at the pre-designated times.
Where does the trip end?
Your trip ends with a drop-off at either the Denver Airport at 12:30pm in time for flights below or at a hotel of your choice around Denver Airport at 1pm.
What flights would you recommend?
Arrival: We recommend arriving in Denver at least the day before your trip starts. Many guests like to arrive a day or two early to accommodate potential flight delays and/or explore the city prior to your trip start.
Departure: Flying out on the last day of the trip, we recommend departing from Denver after 2:30pm. Earlier flight times will require a separate transfer booked at your own expense.
What should I bring with me on the first day?
When you speak with your guides the night before your trip, they will give you a detailed description of what to bring with you on Day 1. Typically, this includes a day pack with your rain jacket, sunglasses, hat, camera, etc. Anything you want easy access to during the day should go in your day pack as the rest of your luggage will go in the locked cargo trailer pulled behind the van. Your guides will provide you with a water bottle on the first morning of your trip and will always have water available for refills. There will be snacks available at all times in the van. Your guides will also have bug spray and sunscreen accessible for you to use.
Will I have contact with my guides before the trip starts?
Your guides will call your cell phone the night before your trip begins to touch base on the first day’s plan. If they don’t get through to you, they will leave a voicemail on your cell phone with all the details you need to plan for your first morning.
What are your recommended guide gratuity guidelines?
You will have 2-3 guides on your Austin Adventure (depending on group size). We recommend USD$20 per day, per guest, per guide. Typically, gratuities are offered by check or cash in local currency on the final morning of the trip and can either be given to each guide individually or to one guide to be equally distributed. Most of our guides these days also accept gratuities via Venmo (please note this app does not work in Canada). All dining, housekeeping and activity tips are included in your trip price.
How do rooming arrangements work?
Trip prices are based on shared arrangements (typically two guests per room), unless otherwise stated. For solo travelers, we’ll pair you with another person of the same gender to share rooms and if there’s no one suitable to share with, there’s no forced single supplement. However, if you specifically request your own rooms, you can opt to pay the single supplement. Solo travelers who book within 90 days of departure, where there are no other solo travelers willing to share, will be required to pay the single supplement.
For Family Vacation bookings, families consisting of four guests traveling with children aged 17 and under will be automatically assigned one shared room. However, the following alternative rooming allocations are available:
Families consisting of four guests with all children aged 13 and above are welcome to opt for additional rooms as per advertised double occupancy adult rates.
Families consisting of four guests with at least one child aged 12 and under are automatically assigned a shared room. However, families can opt to pay the adult rates for all guests in their family to have an additional room.
The same principles apply for families consisting of more than four guests.
Rooming preferences are subject to availability and must be communicated in writing at time of booking. Automatic assignments as per this policy will be applied in the absence of any specification provided by guests. Any request for additional rooms during trips will be at guests’ own expense and subject to rates made available by the accommodation provider at the time. All minors (guests aged 17 and under) must be accompanied by at least one adult.
Why travel with us
Just-right group sizes allow you to get off the beaten path
With an average of 12 guests per departure and an industry-leading 6:1 guest-to-guide ratio, you’ll enjoy a highly personalized experience with the perspective of an insider.
Award-winning guides lead the way
It’s so much easier to relax and enjoy your adventure when you have fun, caring guides who know the land, are experts in motivation, sweat all the details and whip up incredible meals, too!
You’ll never need to sweat the details
When we say all inclusive, we mean it! Meals and snacks, activities, lodging, transportation, guiding services and more. Every detail is handled; all you need to do is show up!
Enjoy freedom to push your boundaries – safely
Every aspect of your trip is thoroughly considered for your safety, from highly vetted vendors and well-maintained equipment to extensively trained guides and our seasoned operations team at headquarters.
Decades of expertise mean you’ll experience only the best
Family travel and North American National Parks are our specialty. We’ve perfected our itineraries and sustained relationships for decades, ensuring you'll experience your destination to the fullest.
"Wow Moments” take your trip from enjoyable to extraordinary
For us, the extra mile is never extra, it’s part of the way! Count on special touches throughout your trip that will amplify your experience. If we’ve done our job, they’ll have you saying “wow!”