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Old 04-01-2022, 10:48 PM   #43
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I've lived in Colorado for 60 years, since before there was an I-70 or an Eisenhower Tunnel. As others have said, parts of I-70 are very scenic, but it's the most scenic parts that may be the most difficult. Going west from Denver, the continuous 6%, 9-mile, westbound downgrade from the Eisenhower Tunnel to Silverthorne is 3-lane, except when they are rebuilding it, which they are currently doing. We also had multiple mudslides last year in scenic Glenwood Canyon and I-70 was closed for a considerable period. The four-lane is now two as CDOT is rebuilding the damaged bridges. The mudslides were caused by rainfall on the burn scar from the previous year's wildfire and there is no guarantee that the same mudslides won't recur this summer. So, I-70 may not be quite the easy drive that others would have you believe.

Personally, i like taking even more scenic routes on good two-lane highways when I take my motorhome to the mountains. Unless there is a particular reason for coming to Denver, I might recommend an alternate route. At Limon leave I-70 and head to Colorado Springs on US 24. At the Springs, take CO 115 to Florence, then US 50 all the way to Grand Junction. You will have to cross Monarch Pass, but it is one of the easier passes across the Divide, with passing lanes on the east side. By taking this route, you can select from stopping to see scenic attractions along US 24/50 like Pikes Peak, the Royal Gorge, the gorgeous Collegiate Range, Curecanti NRA (the boat tour on Morrow Point Reservoir through Black Canyon is spectacular), and Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP.

If you want more info on scenic attractions and camping along the US highways in the Colorado Rockies, see my blog HERE.


This is such a good post. Thank you so much for responding. Im gonna google earth this route for the next time are in that area. We are usually on a mission trying to get from point A to B. This route would be much more relaxing from the sounds of it.

More things to research.
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Old 04-02-2022, 12:00 AM   #44
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I've lived in Colorado for 60 years, since before there was an I-70 or an Eisenhower Tunnel. As others have said, parts of I-70 are very scenic, but it's the most scenic parts that may be the most difficult. Going west from Denver, the continuous 6%, 9-mile, westbound downgrade from the Eisenhower Tunnel to Silverthorne is 3-lane, except when they are rebuilding it, which they are currently doing. We also had multiple mudslides last year in scenic Glenwood Canyon and I-70 was closed for a considerable period. The four-lane is now two as CDOT is rebuilding the damaged bridges. The mudslides were caused by rainfall on the burn scar from the previous year's wildfire and there is no guarantee that the same mudslides won't recur this summer. So, I-70 may not be quite the easy drive that others would have you believe.

Personally, i like taking even more scenic routes on good two-lane highways when I take my motorhome to the mountains. Unless there is a particular reason for coming to Denver, I might recommend an alternate route. At Limon leave I-70 and head to Colorado Springs on US 24. At the Springs, take CO 115 to Florence, then US 50 all the way to Grand Junction. You will have to cross Monarch Pass, but it is one of the easier passes across the Divide, with passing lanes on the east side. By taking this route, you can select from stopping to see scenic attractions along US 24/50 like Pikes Peak, the Royal Gorge, the gorgeous Collegiate Range, Curecanti NRA (the boat tour on Morrow Point Reservoir through Black Canyon is spectacular), and Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP.

If you want more info on scenic attractions and camping along the US highways in the Colorado Rockies, see my blog HERE.


That actually is a really good idea. Unfortunately, last time we tried that we broke down in the Arkansas river canyon. Got a solo night right next to the river out of it though . Nevertheless it should be a good route- I usually think of it as an access to wolf creek pass, but no reason at all you canít keep more northerly
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Old 04-03-2022, 09:49 PM   #45
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For those who liked my US 50 recommendation, there is another reason to stop along the way. Salida is the gateway to Brown's Canyon NM, the premier whitewater rafting destination in Colorado. And, if you bring your fly rod, you can also try your luck on one of Colorado's premier trout fishing streams. You can enhance your experience even more by staying at a riverside Arkansas River Headwaters State Park campground. Everyone needs to go whitewater rafting at least once in their lives. It is guaranteed to be a memory that you will want to share with everyone you know!

Plus, if you have your children or grandkids along for the ride, don't miss taking them to the CPW Mt. Shavano fish hatchery in Salida. Not only do they get to see where trout are raised, they can take a guided tour that explains the science behind it.
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Old 04-03-2022, 10:16 PM   #46
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Finally, an alternative route into Moab from US 50 for those with extra time on their hands. At Whitewater, turn west on CO 141 through Unaweap Canyon to Gateway. The dark, foreboding canyon exposes some of the oldest rocks in Colorado and was carved by the ancestral Gunnison River. For auto buffs, a stop at the fabulous Gateway Automobile Museum is a must.

From Gateway, continue on CO 141 through the red-rock beauty of the Dolores River canyon, with a stop at the viewpoint to see the Hanging Flume. Then it's on to the uranium mining ghost town of Uravan and still-kickin' town of Naturita. At Naturita, turn west again on CO 90 through the Paradox Basin, a collapsed salt anticline. This valley was the center of Colorado's 1910's Radium Boom and 1950's Uranium Boom. Small carnotite mines dotted the rim of the basin all the way to Utah (sorry, I'm a geologist, so this info is important to me!).

BTW, all the state highways mentioned are paved, two-lane roads, winding, but safe and driveable in any size RV (unlike US 550 from Ouray to Silverton--see my blog for an alternative to 550).

At the Utah line, CO 90 becomes UT 46, which will take you to US 191 and Moab. Again, if you have time, do not miss at least one night's stay at the Dead Horse Point State Park campground (with some electric hookups, but NO water to fill an RV tank). This state park has the most jaw-dropping views of any state park in the nation, including Alaska. Beginning in 1972, I traveled over nearly the entire "Last Frontier", including the Aleutian Islands and all but one of its national parks, but none of its campgrounds have views equal to those from Dead Horse Point!
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Old 04-04-2022, 06:04 AM   #47
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Fanrgs, some great recommendations. I almost always come into the Moab area via stops in Santa Fe, NM to Telluride to Moab. Always thought about hwy 50 route....mainly to go to Gunnison NP. Now you have given so many more reasons to do that route. Thanks!
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Old 04-04-2022, 07:18 AM   #48
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Old 04-04-2022, 08:12 AM   #49
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Finally, an alternative route into Moab from US 50 for those with extra time on their hands. At Whitewater, turn west on CO 141 through Unaweap Canyon to Gateway. The dark, foreboding canyon exposes some of the oldest rocks in Colorado and was carved by the ancestral Gunnison River. For auto buffs, a stop at the fabulous Gateway Automobile Museum is a must.

From Gateway, continue on CO 141 through the red-rock beauty of the Dolores River canyon, with a stop at the viewpoint to see the Hanging Flume. Then it's on to the uranium mining ghost town of Uravan and still-kickin' town of Naturita. At Naturita, turn west again on CO 90 through the Paradox Basin, a collapsed salt anticline. This valley was the center of Colorado's 1910's Radium Boom and 1950's Uranium Boom. Small carnotite mines dotted the rim of the basin all the way to Utah (sorry, I'm a geologist, so this info is important to me!).

BTW, all the state highways mentioned are paved, two-lane roads, winding, but safe and driveable in any size RV (unlike US 550 from Ouray to Silverton--see my blog for an alternative to 550).

At the Utah line, CO 90 becomes UT 46, which will take you to US 191 and Moab. Again, if you have time, do not miss at least one night's stay at the Dead Horse Point State Park campground (with some electric hookups, but NO water to fill an RV tank). This state park has the most jaw-dropping views of any state park in the nation, including Alaska. Beginning in 1972, I traveled over nearly the entire "Last Frontier", including the Aleutian Islands and all but one of its national parks, but none of its campgrounds have views equal to those from Dead Horse Point!


Thank you fanrgs. One of the things my wife often says is she wishes to study geology, so she can understand more about the areas we see. Last year we poked more around the Grand Escalante Ö and the more we see the more awed we are by the whole area.

Re routes to Moab, growing up I never knew (until I bicycled through it in my youth) that there is this huge flat San Luis valley smack in the middle of the mountains of Colorado. Easy driving, but some singular passes to get in and out of it (versus the constant mountain driving of I70). Your writings make clear there is much more to be seen there than I had ever suspected - thank you. Iím thinking that next summer coming back to mn from the Santa Fe area we might just go north into the valley instead of sticking to I25 (did I say I greatly dislike driving along the front range?). Even if we donít make it down to nm, we can use your route heading east coming home from Great Basin (one of our planned primary destinations)

Thanks again!
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Old 04-06-2022, 06:33 AM   #50
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Heh, heh. I live in Denver and don't like driving along the Front Range (ie., I-25) any better than you do. If it's possible to leave my house in my motorhome and not use I-25, I take that route even if it's longer.
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