Fascinating early Union Pacific Railroad promotional map for Estes Park and the area south and west of Rocky Mountain National Park. Denver and Fort Collins appear in the east, and the map primarily promotes the available automobile routes in the region.
The import of the map is the Union Pacific's promotion of rail travel to Denver as a means of seeing the Rocky Mountains by bus or car, as the main lines in red promote routes operated by the Rocky Mountain Parks Transportation Company. The map is reflective of the beginning of America's romance with the automobile and the era of "over loving" the US national parks, which resulted in a boom in commercial exploitation and over development of the park system.
Maps such as this one provide a marvelous ephemeral look at the use and development of the region and often commercial interests in scenic areas. These would be later closed and abandoned as the management of the park system evolved away from tourist uses and became increasingly focused on the preservation and conservation of the natural resource element of the parks.