If you are planning a trip to Colorado, viewing wildlife in abundance is nearly guaranteed. With the moose wandering around Summit County, elk grazing in Estes Park, and bears roaming the mountains all across the state, you are bound to see some interesting wildlife where ever you are in the Colorado Rockies.
Moose in Colorado
These majestic beasts are not as easily spotted as the mule deer, but at the right time of the year, they can be seen casually strolling the streets of Frisco and Breckenridge. Please remember to admire their beauty from a distance. Though it is unlikely a moose may charge you, they are known to for being territorial and a mother protecting her young can be very dangerous. These large creatures range from 4 1/2 feet to nearly 7 feet tall at the shoulder, and a grown adult male can weight up to 1,500 pounds.
Black Bears in Colorado
Something going through the trash outside of your Airbnb in Blue River? Don’t just assume it’s a raccoon, cause it’s often a black bear. Though you don’t see black bears as often in town, they definitely roam the forests all over Colorado. Male black bears weigh in around 275 pounds, but can get up to 450 pounds. Cubs are a cute sight, but keep in mind that the mother is close behind and will get angry once she sees you cradling her baby. There are plenty of precautions you can take for hikes or camping for black bears. Be sure to tie you food up on a tree limb a good distance away from your tent, and equip your pups with bells on their collars and yourself with bear spray for a sticky situation.
Elk in Colorado
It’s quite the sight to see elk grazing in an open pasture or up close and personal such as witnessing one of several herds that pass through Estes Park every year. The area inside and surrounding Rocky Mountain National Park is probably the best region to observe these beasts in large numbers. The beauty and size of these creatures is hard to match. Elk tend to be smaller and more slender than moose, and their bulbous noses are the giveaway to differentiate the two.
Most would agree the Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep is the ultimate icon of the Colorado Rocky Mountains, and in fact is the official mammal of Colorado. This sure-footed animal make their homes in the high alpine tundra. The Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep can be found in the highest points of the Gore Range, Collegiate Peaks, as well as Rocky Mountain National Park. Their ability to blend in to the rugged terrain they travel through makes them arguably one of the more difficult animals to observe in the state.
Mountain Goats in Colorado
Hike above tree line to observe these ivory ninjas bounce around the rocks. If you’re hiking a 14er or climbing up pretty high in elevation, you’ll most likely see a pack of mountain goats along your way. During the winter months, these goats will migrate into the trees.
Looking to venture out on the water this year in search of some wildlife? Call Colorado River Rentals for all your equipment needs!
*Featured image courtesy of Katie Schneider.