Southern Rockies

Southern Rockies

Overview

Colorado Southern Rockies
SSouth of US 50 (minus the Canon City area) and west of I-25. Divided into regions according to highway access.
  • SH 149 Silver Thread Scenic Byway from US 50 to US 160 at South Fork. Eastern access to the Alpine Loop.
  • US 550 – the San Juan Skyway – Ouray Area. Western access to the Alpine Loop.
  • SH 145 and the San Juan Skyway – Telluride Area.

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Alpine Loop Backcountry Byway

A snowy vista seen from Engineer Pass on the Alpine Loop Backcountry Byway.
Snowy vista – Engineer Pass

Highlights:

  • FlowersVistasSummer wildflowers and vistas in American Basin off the Cinnamon Pass Rd.
  • VistasIncredible vistas from Engineer Pass and Oh! Point.
  • VistasFor the adventurous, scenic side roads on the way to Silverton.
  • Historical Mining RemnantsThe entire area is rich in mining history and its remnants.

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San Juan Skyway – Ouray

SH 62 from Placerville to US 550 to Durango

Colorful aspen on the San Juan Skyway near Ouray,Colorado.
Colorful aspen – San Juan Skyway

Ouray, surrounded on three sides with 13,000 ft peaks, is known for its large natural hot springs, picturesque Victorian architecture and the Ice Park.

Highlights:

  • FlowersVistasSpectacular wildflower displays and scenery in Yankee Boy Basin
  • VistasExceptional views along the Million Dollar Hwy, Ophir Pass Rd, Dallas Divide
  • Fall ColorsFall foliage along Owl Creek Pass Rd, US-550

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San Juan Skyway – Telluride

SH 145 from Placerville to Durango

Tomboy Ghost Town - Telluride
Tomboy Ghost Town – Telluride


Telluride is a National Historic District located in a box canyon surrounded by towering peaks. Telluride also hosts music, art, film, food, balloon, hang gliding, mushroom, and photography events and festivals.

Highlights:

  • WaterfallsBridal Veil Falls is a must see.
  • FlowersWildflowers in Gold King Basin
  • Fall ColorsFall foliage on Last Dollar, Silver Pick, and Ophir Pass

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Other Southern Locations

Looking into The Narrows of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison
Black Canyon of the Gunnison

Highlights:

  • WaterfallsSkiing or sledding on the Dunes. Morning and evening shadows.
  • WaterfallsRanger guided tours of the cliff dwellings.
  • VistasSheer cliffs of the spectacular Black Canyon.
  • WaterfallsVistasWaterfalls, access to the Alpine Loop and fantastic scenery along the Silver Thread Scenic Byway.