News

Mount Evans Road Opening Up Halfway

May 26, 2011 - Central Eastern Colorado/CDOT Region 1 - CLEAR CREEK COUNTY – The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) will open the Mount Evans Highway to traffic tomorrow but only to Summit Lake and not to the summit, due to heavy amounts of snowfall in May.

State Highway 5 typically is opened to the summit on the Friday before Memorial Day.  However, despite the best efforts of CDOT maintenance crews to have the road cleared to the top of Mount Evans (14,264 feet), an additional six to seven feet of snow has fallen this month, often canceling out previous clearing operations that began on May 2.

“Our crews have been working diligently to get that road cleared of snow and ice but we clear it one day and then the road is covered up again with snow the next day after another storm comes in – it’s been happening all month,” said CDOT Deputy Maintenance Superintendant Al Martinez.  “Most years, it’s not a problem to get the entire road open in time for Memorial Day but, in additional to all the snow that fell during the winter, the wet, heavy snow we’ve gotten up there this spring has made it very challenging this year.”

As of today, snow has been removed from the lower half of the highway, between Echo and Summit lakes.  Snow removal operations are now underway on the upper four miles of roadway, from Summit Lake to the top, and will continue through next week.

CDOT expects to open the remaining segment of Highway 5 to traffic by Friday, June 3.  However, adverse weather could once again delay the opening.

The National Forest Service oversees the area encompassing the Mount Evans Highway, and collects tolls to travel the road.

Information regarding the opening and closing of seasonal highways in Colorado is available at all times on the cotrip.org website or by calling 511.  Updates also are offered via e-mail.  Please visit www.coloradodot.info and click on the cell-phone icon in the upper right-hand corner.  The link takes you to a list of items you can subscribe to, including General Travel Information – Seasonal Mountain Pass Closures/Openings.

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