Earlier this week, Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park officially closed for the season to through travel, according to park officials - but it won't be the only thing to close this season.

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Major Construction Begins At RMNP's Fall River Drive Entrance Next Week

According to an Oct. 24 press release via Rocky Mountain National Park, construction on the park's Fall River Entrance will begin the week of October 31.

Rocky Mountain National Park/Facebook
Rocky Mountain National Park/Facebook

Where is the Fall River entrance located? 

The Fall River Entrance at Rocky Mountain National Park is one of two major entrance stations on the east side of the park. It's located along U.S. Highway 34, just inside the park boundary.

What kind of changes are coming? 

The entrance was initially designed nearly 60 years ago to help with summer operations at the park; as you can imagine, park operations have only grown in the last 60 years - as such, the facilities at the Fall River Entrance Station no longer meet the safety or operational needs of the park.

Rocky Mountain National Park/Facebook
Rocky Mountain National Park/Facebook

"When the entrance station was designed, the park had approximately one and a half million annual visitors. By 2019, annual visitation almost tripled, to over four and a half million annual visitors", park officials said. 

Rocky Mountain National Park/Facebook
Rocky Mountain National Park/Facebook

"Improvements are needed to improve visitor access and convenience, reduce traffic congestion, and provide a safe and efficient space for park employees."

Improvements and additions being made to RMNP's Fall River Drive Entrance include the following:

  • a fast pass lane will be added
  • roads will be widened in an effort to improve visitor wait times and experience while entering through the Fall River Entrance
  • a new office + three kiosks - with proper ventilation - will be constructed
  • Ia new entrance sign featuring a small formal parking area will be installed

Things To Know During Construction

During this major construction project, officials say there will only one lane at Fall River Entrance will be operational to enter the park and one lane to exit.

While construction is taking place, park visitors are strongly encouraged to avoid the Fall River Entrance and use the Beaver Meadows Entrance. Visitors should expect extended wait times at both major east-side entrance stations.

Depending on weather conditions and resources available during construction, the project should be completed by late June of next year.

The Fall River Visitor Center will remain open with winter hours of 9 am to 4:30 p.m. seven days a week. For more information about Rocky Mountain National Park and the park's latest road closures  + construction projects, visit NPS.gov/romo; you can also contact the park’s Information Office at (970) 586-1206.

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