Colorado, North America, Uncategorized

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

Have you ever been to Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge in Denver, Colorado? If not and you’re in the Denver area, it is a can’t miss in my book. Plus, it’s free! Have to love that price all the time.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

My husband’s job not only provides the money we need to live, but it also provides us the opportunity to see the world. We’ve lived in and visited some pretty great places. He obviously has to work when we are in these places because, for some reason, the boss wants him to do something in return for his paycheck. Dang it anyway!

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

General Information

While we were in Denver, our very favorite place was the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. It’s actually in Commerce City, but that’s just a suburb of Denver. It is located on almost 16,000 square miles of protected land, with an 11 mile wildlife viewing road, a few paths to hike on and a visitor’s center to get up to date information. It is open 7 days a week, from sun up, to sun down.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

Types of Animals

We visited the refuge twice while we were there and we saw loads of animals. I took over 500 photos between the two visits. Digital cameras really help me to get nice photos, among the not so great ones. I’m not afraid to just keep shooting. Like the little fawn below. I was able to get about 10 feet away and I shot probably 50 photos of just this one animal. She didn’t seem bothered at all by me.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

We saw whitetail and mule deer, bison, loads of birds, rabbits and prairie dogs. They weren’t all easy to see, but they were fun to spot when we did see them.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

Tips

I have a few tips for spotting wildlife at the refuge. These can be applied any time you’re looking for wildlife. It’s one of our favorite things to do.

  1. Get there early. The earlier the better. The animals are up the most early in the morning and late in the evening. During the day they are doing what we want to do. Napping.
  2. Drive slow. We usually get passed up when we’re trying to spot wildlife. We saw so many people drive right past animals on the side of the road. They were looking for big groups of animals.
  3. Watch for wildlife on the road. Again, drive slow. They dart out in front of you with no warning. Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge
  4. Take drinks and a snack with you. We spent several hours out there and     there weren’t any lemonade stands anywhere. In the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge, the only bathrooms we saw were at the entrance, by and in the visitor’s center.
  5. Call in advance to be sure they are open. We tried to go another time and the gates were locked. So sad.
  6. Bring a camera, preferably with a telephoto lens. The photo opportunities are amazing.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

Go ahead and take some time away from the rat race and visit the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. You won’t be sorry. Be sure to bring your camera. Where is your favorite wildlife viewing area to visit?

 

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

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18 Comments

  • Reply Lisa January 26, 2018 at 6:05 pm

    Great photos! I love animals. I just bought a camper van and hope to make my way around the west. I’ve added this place to my list.

    • Reply ppadmin January 26, 2018 at 7:39 pm

      Oh good. It’s such a fantastic place.

  • Reply Taryn January 26, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    Oh your photos are so good! I don’t usually have the patience for wildlife photography, but you’ve inspired me to give it another try. And I had no idea you could see bison near Denver!

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:24 pm

      Thank you. It calms my soul to go out and photograph wildlife. Patience is the key for sure. This was an excellent place to visit.

  • Reply Hanna January 26, 2018 at 8:13 pm

    Those are amazing wild life sightings. I loved your photos!

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:25 pm

      Thank you so much. We were pretty excited to see all of the animals.

  • Reply Valerie Hansen January 26, 2018 at 8:33 pm

    Really loving all the wildlife here, would love to visit. I have only been to Denver, would love to see this park!

    Val

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:26 pm

      It was an excellent find for sure. When you go to Denver next, you have to go.

  • Reply Emily January 26, 2018 at 8:53 pm

    I didn’t know this was there and I have been to Denver many times! Thank you for the tip.

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:27 pm

      Be sure to take a drive over. It is worth it for sure.

  • Reply Sapna January 26, 2018 at 9:58 pm

    I love visiting national parks, animal centuries and natural places. Loved the pictures of animals. I also click too many pictures like you clicked on your two trips.

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:28 pm

      National parks are the best for sure. Good thing for digital cameras, right?!

  • Reply umiko January 26, 2018 at 10:31 pm

    I haven’t been to this refuge, but I think I’ve seen the sign. Next time we go to Colorado (this summer I hope), I will put this place in our itinerary.

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:28 pm

      I’m so glad because it is worth the trip for sure. So much to see. I would plan at least 3 hours.

  • Reply Anisa January 27, 2018 at 3:47 am

    I can’t believe this is free! I was in Denver a few months ago but I didn’t know about this place. I definitely want to visit when I go back.

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:29 pm

      I know! It’s it great when wonderful things are free?! Enjoy your visit when you go.

  • Reply Alice January 27, 2018 at 3:58 pm

    Wow that looks like a really amazing place to see wildlife in their natural habitat! I’ve loved seeing a bear when I was in Yosemite so I would love to go there too and see some bisons!!

    • Reply ppadmin January 27, 2018 at 6:31 pm

      It’s so great to be able to see the animals without too much effort, so anyone can appreciate them.

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