Rocky Mountain National Park Mountain Driving

Driving in the mountains provides many challenges. Steep roadways combined with less oxygen at higher altitudes can place additional demands on any vehicle. By following a few guidelines, you can help your car stay healthy at the park's higher altitudes:

Use lower gears while traveling downhill:

You can slow down your car without wearing down the brakes. If you smell your brakes, pull over, let them cool off and test them before proceeding. Do not drive if the brakes are not working properly.

If the vehicle is losing power while traveling uphill:

use a lower gear to help prevent power loss.

After stopping:

let your car's engine run a minute before turning off the engine.

Air Conditioning

Do not use air conditioning. It contributes to power loss. If the vehicle is losing power has a rough-running engine or will not start, it may be experiencing vapor lock. If you suspect your vehicle has vapor lock, let it sit for 30 minutes. Loosen the gas cap and open the hood. If possible, remove the air filter. Try restarting the engine after 30 minutes.

If your engine dies:

try to pull into a turnoff.

There are no service stations in the park:

If you need towing or road service, notify the park by using an emergency phone or getting a message to a ranger station or visitor center. Towing and road service are available from Estes Park or Grand Lake.

Slower drivers:

should use the park's pullouts to let other vehicles pass.

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November's Featured Park
The North Cascades have long been known as the North American Alps. Characterized by rugged beauty, this steep mountain range is filled with jagged peaks, deep valleys, cascading waterfalls and glaciers. North Cascades National Park Service Complex contains the heart of this mountainous region in three park units which are all managed as one and include North Cascades National Park, Ross Lake and Lake Chelan National Recreation Areas.
November's Animal
Badgers are animals of open country. Their oval burrows (ten inches across and four to six inches high) are familiar features of grasslands on sandy or loamy soils of the eastern plains or shrub country in mountain parks or western valleys.