Urban Thruhike: Denver to Rocky Mountain National Park

Julia Oleksiak


Boulder, Colorado

Cairn Project Ambassador Julia Oleksiak smiles with mountains and a lake behind her

About Julia Oleksiak

Julia is a land steward and educator, currently working in the outdoor industry coordinating national youth education programs for Leave No Trace in Denver, CO.

65+ Miles of Urban Hiking

In August, Julia will head out for a three day urban-to-wilderness adventure making her way to Rocky Mountain National Park on foot. Starting in downtown Denver, Julia will pass through the towns of Superior, Lyons, and Estes Park. With this ‘city hiking’ adventure, Julia hopes to highlight a common barrier to accessing the outdoors: personal or public transportation.

Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) is located within the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains near the town of Estes Park. The park was protected in 1915 by the Rocky Mountain National Park Act signed by President Woodrow Wilson. RMNP, despite being one of the most visited in the National Park System and situated only ~75miles from Denver, is not yet accessible via public transportation.

Map showing Julia's route through Rocky Mountain National Park
Julia poses for a photo in her Park Ranger uniform in front of Half Dome 
with a fellow Park Ranger

Why Get Out and Give Back?

“I am a strong believer in the power of the outdoors and that everyone should have the ability to access that. I’m inspired by female power on a daily basis, and believe that there is a lot we can learn from the rising generation of young women. In that, I think it is up to us to pass on what knowledge and adventure we can, just like the women before us. Let’s continue to build our collective voices and to empower those women around us. When we do, amazing things happen!”

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