Estes Park's first longtime settler was a pioneer by the name of Joel Estes who homesteaded in the area in 1863. Although Joel and his wife only stayed in the valley for a couple of years they opened the path to discovery of the area by white settlers. The Estes', however had not been the valley's first human occupants. The native Ute and Arapahoe had lived and hunted in the area for centuries before. Many of the area's features are named by these early occupants. As white settlers filtered into the valley they tried to establish ranching and farming enterprises but soon learned that the only prosperous livelihood was through tourism.
At 7500 ft in elevation, Estes Park is the gateway community to one of the nation's most visited treasures, Rocky Mountain National Park. The Rooftop Rodeo is PRCA's highest altitude rodeo, thus the tag "Rodeo with Altitude!"
In Estes Park and the surrounding area there is plenty to do and see for all ages. From trail rides and hiking trails in Rocky Mountain National Park and surrounding Roosevelt National Forest to shopping in downtown Estes Park one will find plenty of activities to more than fill their time. For more information on the Estes Park area click on the links below.