Although the pace in Estes Park slows when the snow flies, the adventures continue. More and more families are discovering that winter hiking can be great fun, especially when the snow is fluffy and deep enough to accommodate snowshoes. Bring your own gear or rent snowshoes and poles from Estes Park gear shops, and then hit local trails. Anyone who hikes can master snowshoeing in a few minutes—grandparents and parents alike find it an enjoyable activity to share with children as young as four and five years old. Youngsters like it because they can see animal tracks in the snow and throw a few snowballs along the way. Usually the best months to go are January through March, thanks to heavier and more frequent snows.
Beginners or those new to the area may wish to participate in guided snowshoe treks. Several outfitters in the area offer them, often inside Rocky Mountain National Park. Dozens of trails weave across the national park, where snowshoeing is at its best. Occasionally, Ma Nature dumps enough snow at lower elevations in Estes Park to warrant snowshoeing—on those lucky days, snowshoers could try trails near Lily Mountain or break their own across the village's open spaces. Most, however, head up to the higher elevations to snowshoe in Rocky Mountain National Park.