You can bike Trail Ridge Road with no traffic for the next month

(Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

staff photo
Trail Ridge Road. Nov. 9, 2016 (Rocky Mountain National Park via Twitter)

Trail Ridge Road. Nov. 9, 2016 (Rocky Mountain National Park)

Rocky Mountain National Park has opened its spectacular Trail Ridge Road to cyclists and pedestrians for the next month or so.

It’s a heck of a ride: 3,000 vertical feet of climbing if you start at the Kawuneeche Visitor Center on the west side, even more from Beaver Meadows Visitor Center near Estes Park. The total distance is 48 miles from Estes Park to Grand Lake.

This is a rare opportunity to get up there without a crush of tourist traffic, but you’ll also have to deal with potentially dangerous spring conditions, including gusts of wind and sudden weather changes.

Vehicles typically aren’t allowed on the road until late in May. Conditions are available by calling 970-586-1222.

Here’s a good read on what it’s like to cycle the thing, in case you’d rather just live vicariously.

The view off Trail Ridge Road. (Andrew Kenney/Denverite)

The view of a trail off Trail Ridge Road. (Andrew Kenney/Denverite)