Sorry, seems like that's a very popular question, but have to ask again :)
We'll be arriving to Denver on Fri night (beginning of August) at 10:30 pm and we'll be renting a car.
The plan is to spend weekend in Rocky Mountains, and fit as much as possible - preferences scenic drives, viewpoints, short hikes, nice places for lunch/dinner.
I'm a bit worry since it's a weekend there might be some traffic going to RMNP on Sat morning and I'd like to make some headstart on Fri night, leave the city and stay somewhere closer to the park, but I also want to find a budget place, since during our week in Colorado I'll have to stay at places where finding cheap accommodation is impossible.
I also would like to check Boulder on our way to RMNP or on our way back, but if spending Sat morning in Boulder will result in staying in traffic to get to the park I'd just would head to the park.
On Mon we plan to visit water park in Denver first half of the day and go to Vail (stay there overnight), so on our way back we can stay somewhere closer to Denver, maybe in Boulder?, but I also would like to avoid possible morning commute traffic and hopefully find some reasonable price.
Maybe I'm too paranoid about traffic, but here in Seattle it can get crazy if you hit the road in the wrong place at the wrong time, so I'd like to avoid it as much as possible.
Can you recommend a place to stay:
on Fri night - can't be to far from the airport, because it will be late, but 40 min is OK, budget place if possible
on Sat - to get the most of RMNP Sat afternoon and most part of the day on Sun (my guess the choice would be the Estes park, but would like to confirm), afraid no budget option there
on Sun - so it would be easy to visit the waterpark in Denver on Mon morning, and maybe spend Sun late afternoon in Boulder, hopefully budget choice and to avoid morning commute.