Directions to Estes Park

Directions to Estes ParkHere are directions to Estes Park from various locations. Also provided are external links to Google Maps, which open in a separate window. PLEASE NOTE that in order to get the Google Maps to display the route I wanted, I had to add some destinations along the way. Therefore, take Google’s written instructions with a grain of salt.

Directions to Estes Park from Denver:

  • Take Interstate 25 north to CO 66 (about 36 miles).
  • Take CO 66 west to Lyons (about 15 miles).
  • In Lyons, get in the right lane and continue through the center of town. Don’t speed! It’s a trap! At the end of town, follow US 36 west (it will be a right turn).
  • Continue on US 36 until you get to Estes Park (about 22 miles).

Drive time: 1 1/2 – 2 hours from Denver
Google Map | Our Silly Map (PDF)

An alternative route is to take I-25 north to US 36 west. Take US 36 through Boulder to Estes Park. There is little difference in time, but there is more traffic going through Boulder.
Google Map | Our Silly Map (PDF)

Directions to Estes Park from Boulder:

  • In Boulder, head north on 28th Street. Stay on 28th Street (which is also US 36) and it will spit you out north of Boulder.
  • (Alternatively, take Broadway north out of Boulder and turn left (west) onto US 36.)
  • Continue about 15 miles on US 36. You will come to a stoplight. Turn left to continue on US 36 and go through the town of Lyons.
  • In Lyons, get in the right lane and continue through the center of town. Don’t speed! It’s a trap! At the end of town, follow US 36 west (it will be a right turn).
  • Continue on US 36 until you get to Estes Park (about 22 miles).

Drive time: 45 minutes-1 hour from Boulder
Google Map | Our Silly Map (PDF)

Directions to Estes Park from Fort Collins or northern Colorado:

  • Take I-25 south to US 34.
  • Take US 34 west through the town of Loveland and the Big Thompson Canyon to Estes Park (about 35 miles).

Drive time: 45 minutes-1 hour from Loveland
Google Map | Our Silly Map (PDF)

Directions to Estes Park from western Colorado in the summer, and you want to go through Rocky Mountain National Park on the way:

  • Take I-70 east to Exit 232 (US 40 to Empire/Granby).
  • Take US 40 to the town of Granby (about 45 miles; you will pass through Winter Park).
  • After passing through Granby, turn right on US 34 east.
  • Take US 34 to Estes Park. (about 65 miles; you will pass through the town of Grand Lake and Rocky Mountain National Park.)
  • Note: the road across Rocky Mountain National Park is a high mountain road. Those who dislike heights, and those who have health conditions that may be affected by altitude, should consider a different route. Also, the road is open only in summer, and even then may be closed due to weather. There is a fee to enter Rocky Mountain National Park.

Drive time: Approx. 3 hours from Exit 232
Google Map | Our Silly Map (PDF)

(An alternative, much faster route goes through Wolcott and Kremmling, but involves about 25 miles of unpaved road. The more adventurous can consult Google Maps.)

Directions to Estes Park from western Colorado in the winter, or you do not want to go through Rocky Mountain National Park on the way:

  • Take I-70 east to Exit 243 (Hidden Valley/Central City Pkwy).
  • Take the Central City Parkway to Central City (about 8 miles).
  • Central City Parkway becomes Nevada St in Central City.
  • Turn right onto Gregory St (the main thoroughfare) and go about 1.5 miles.
  • You will go through the town of Black Hawk and come to a series of stop lights. At the last light, turn left on CO 119.
  • Take CO 119 to Nederland (about 18 miles).
  • In Nederland, you will come to a roundabout. From the roundabout, turn onto CO 72.
  • Take CO 72 until it dead-ends on CO 7 (about 21 miles).
  • Turn left on CO 7 and take it to Estes Park (about 19 miles).

Drive time: Approx. 1 3/4 hours from Exit 243
Google Map | Our Silly Map (PDF)

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