Top 3 Nursing Compact States for Adventurous RNs

nursing compact states

By: Melissa Mills, RN, BSN, CCM, MHA

If you live in one of the nursing compact states, then you may be closer to excitement than you realize. Colorado, Montana and Utah are just three of 23 other states currently in the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), and provide endless sources of adventure for travel nurses seeking hiking, biking, swimming and/or skiing in-between shifts. 

LEARN MORE about the NLC, here.

If you’re a registered nurse who is licensed in one of the compact states and loves adventure and the great outdoors, then consider taking your next travel nursing assignment in one of these three states. 


Colorado is one of the top ski locations in the world. It is also home to the Rocky Mountains, boasting views from renowned places such as Pikes Peak. You can hit the slopes at amazing places like Vail, Aspen, or Breckenridge.

If you love the mountains, but skiing is not your forte, Colorado is also a popular destination for hiking, backpacking, and mountain biking. If you are a music enthusiast, catch your favorite band or artist at Red Rocks, or just sit back and enjoy the sounds and scenery. The options in this nursing compact state are endless.


No matter if you visit in the winter or summer, Montana is full of adventure for the traveling nurse.

Glacier National Park covers a vast amount of land on the border of the U.S. and Canada. The park contains more than 100 lakes, plus thousands of plants and animals. If you love water recreation, head to Flathead Lake. Two rivers supply this lake with fresh water, creating a fishing and water recreation paradise.

If you are ready to hit the slopes, head to Big Sky. This quaint little town is surrounded by wildlife and is full of cabins, cozy B&Bs, and the luxurious Big Sky Resort. This community is perfect for hiking, biking, horseback riding, fishing, hunting, and more.


Utah is known for spectacular stone arches, canyons, waterfalls, rivers, and lakes. Arches National Park boasts more than 2,000 stone arches to explore. You can hike long, scenic roads to see Arches National Park. Many hikers enjoy finding rocks to climb and animals to watch in this beautiful park.  

If you are ready to step back in time, head to Monument Valley. This expansive skyline of buttes and deep canyons looks the same today as it did thousands of years ago. Trails ranging from easy to difficult traverse canyons, snake under bridges, and stretch across wondrous landscapes that will keep you amazed at the beauty of Utah.

CHECK OUT the other states that fall under the NLC and let your adventures begin! 


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