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Old 08-01-2015, 05:57 PM   #1
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Fruita, CO to Colorado Springs, CO

Just wondering if anyone has strong opinions about taking US-50 versus I-70 between Fruita and Colorado Springs?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 08-01-2015, 06:23 PM   #2
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According to my calculations (actually Googles calculations) they are the same approximate mileage but it takes 1 hour longer to go by way of US 50.

I just asked my pretty co-pilot if we ever drove that road and she said "some of it, don't you remember?" I said which part and she said from "Fruita down to The Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park Don't you remember that either?" so I dug deeper and then I said "then where dear? and she said "we drove (she means I drove since she has never even sat in the drivers seat!) down to Telluride where we took that gondola ride up the mountain and they had the special gondola cars just for pets. Don't you remember that either?" "And before you ask where to next we went to the Durango/Silverton train ride Don't you remember that either? And that mountain pass that scared the hebejebes out of you (she meant her) and you said never again" (again she means her). Can'tyou remember anything?

So my dear friend, yes we drove some of it, and really enjoyed the road. Take your time and enjoy the view! (even if you don't remember it )
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Old 08-01-2015, 06:43 PM   #3
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It's funny you mention taking that southward dive around Durango. I just finished re-reading "When the Legends Die" which is set around Pagosa and such. I've been tempted to drive through there just for the fun of it, but we won't have the time on the calendar for that, unfortunately.

I am interested, though, in hearing others' recent experience. Because I've seen enough of interstates - and I'd happily give up one hour of Google's calculations (which are never accurate in my limited coach driving experience) for a somewhat different drive than I-70. "Mountain Directory West" mentions 3 passes (I think) via I-70, but only one on US-50. I'm not afraid of passes and our V10 has performed wonderfully over them all. I'm just looking for something different, I guess - so long as it makes sense.

However, I'm tempted to take I-70 just to go through the Eisenhower Tunnel! And would choose that over 2300 stoplights in small towns.
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Old 08-01-2015, 10:00 PM   #4
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We would definitely take Hwy 50 rather than the interstate. It's a beautiful drive with minimal traffic compared to I-70. We like to enjoy the surrounding scenery of secondary roads and poke around the small towns.
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Old 08-01-2015, 10:08 PM   #5
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There is a lot of construction on 70. We are at Steamboat lake and have gone into Denver 3 times and have been in traffic jams every time. The one pass on 50 is not a hard pull at all.
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Old 08-02-2015, 06:12 AM   #6
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If you do take I-70 there is construction and narrowing of lanes. We drove it not long ago and left the State Park in Fruita at 8:00 am heading east and did not experience any traffic jams at all. But the Westbound side was packed. Not to say east won't be packed when you drive it, but you never know. However I found that section of Interstate 70 to be spectacular in scenery. And if you are into bridges there is one section (where the construction is) where the Interstate is literally screwed into the mountain side with a long section of bridges. You will wonder "just how do they do it". The tunnels at the top are really neat, but I enjoyed the bridges much more.

No matter which way you go, enjoy the ride.
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Old 08-02-2015, 01:09 PM   #7
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just did 50 last month pueblo to grand junction. beautiful drive only minimal road construction
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Old 08-07-2015, 11:04 PM   #8
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Any news on I-70 construction?

I see on Google Maps' traffic and CoTrip.org tonight that there is a dead stop and closure around Glenwood Springs / Canyon. But the CoTrip.org site doesn't offer any details (in terms of road closures).

I'm curious if any of you have gone through there the past day or two?

Many thanks!
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Old 08-08-2015, 05:31 PM   #9
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The closure maybe related to a rock slide back in June, "Rock Scaling" operations were conducted on 8/4, 20 minute closures.


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Old 08-09-2015, 05:56 PM   #10
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I've driven Hwy 50 both ways in a 43' M/H with 4Dr Jeep toad. No problems either way. Scenery is spectacular. Forgot what the cutoff is to and from Co. Springs rather than driving to Pueblo.
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Old 08-10-2015, 09:09 AM   #11
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U.S.-50 route write up coming soon

I ended up going US-50. I don't have good internet or cell service here, so I will write up a detailed review in a day or four.

There are 3 passes. Monarch is the big "your brakes are definitely going to get hot" one. At least East-bound. My altitude showed 11361 feet at the top.

The views are amazing. Arkansas and Gunnison Rivers views are well worth this trip!
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Old 08-16-2015, 08:49 AM   #12
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East-bound US-50 from Grand Junction to West Pueblo

I've already given the brief review above.

1) Prepare for three passes. And the last (Monarch at 11,361 feet according to my GPS) is by far the biggest and baddest. Make sure your brakes are good and that you use a lower gear for this one. Of our 6+ week trip out West, this descent was by far the most strenuous on our coach. We came from the Midwest, crossed the Bighorns on US-16, went all the way to Portland and back through SD, MT, WY, UT, NV, CA, ID, and CO.

2) Prepare for fantastic views. The Gunnison and Arkansas Rivers, and the hills and canyons they run through, are fantastic. This must be a well hidden gem. I wasn't aware of this at all until we decided to drive through it. I truly hope to come back and stay there in the future.

3) Don't plan on using your cruise control at all for this drive.
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