News

No Name, Bair Ranch rest areas reopen along I-70 in Glenwood Canyon

November 20, 2020 - Northwestern Colorado - Glenwood Canyon bike path and trails continue to be closed

GARFIELD AND EAGLE COUNTIES ― The Colorado Department of Transportation has reopened the No Name (Exit 119) and Bair Ranch (Exit 129) rest areas along Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon. CDOT is reopening the two rest areas after determining both are safe for motorists to use as the canyon continues to recover from the impacts of the Grizzly Creek Fire. Other rest areas in the canyon continue to be closed, including the Grizzly Creek (Exit 121) and Hanging Lake (Exit 125) rest areas. The bike path and hiking trails also remain closed. 

CDOT continues to monitor the canyon for potential debris flow, mudslides, rock slides and other impacts from the Grizzly Creek burn scar. CDOT will enact a safety closure for I-70 and all rest areas if weather forecasts show potential for debris flow, mudslides or rockslides. Travelers on I-70 and visitors are only allowed to stop at the No Name and Bair Ranch rest areas. Limiting stops in the canyon is to ensure that CDOT and law enforcement can evacuate the canyon as quickly as possible in the event of a safety closure on I-70. Limited use of the bike path is allowed from Glenwood Springs to No Name, to allow No Name residents to commute to work by bicycle. 

Motorists planning to travel on I-70 in Glenwood Canyon should pay close attention to weather forecasts. If snow or ice are in the forecast, travelers should be prepared for chain or traction laws to be in effect (see further below for more information). If there is rain in the forecast, be prepared for a safety closure of I-70 due to the potential for debris flow, mudslide and rockfall. CDOT recommends picking an alternate route in case the canyon closes. Please refer to COtrip.org for the latest road conditions and route options. Motorists should be wary of using GPS navigation apps for searching alternate routes, since not all platforms provide up-to-date information. Travelers should avoid using county or forest roads as alternate routes, as road conditions may not be favorable.

CDOT also recommends that travelers bring an emergency kit, with water, snacks, a flashlight and a blanket, as mountain conditions often change suddenly in the fall season. Motorists can continue to use rest areas in Edwards (via Exit 163 to 220 Edwards Access Rd, Edwards, CO 81632) and Rifle (via Exit 90 to Lion Park Circle, Rifle, CO 81650). Information about the Grizzly Creek Fire is posted regularly at inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6942/

CDOT is reminding people to only interact with people from their household this Thanksgiving to help slow the alarming spread of COVID-19. This holiday season is an opportunity to reimagine what togetherness can look like and come up with creative ways to celebrate loved ones while making sure they stay healthy for many more years to come.  

Dos and don’ts for Thanksgiving celebrations:

o   Do cook and eat a special meal with members of your immediate household.

o   Do video chat or talk on the phone with friends and family who don’t live with you.

o   Do wear a mask and keep 6 feet of distance from others while grocery shopping

o   Don’t travel to visit family and friends in other households.

KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

Travelers are urged to “know before you

go.” Gather information about weather forecasts and anticipated travel impacts

and current road conditions prior to hitting the road. CDOT

resources include:

·  CDOT winter driving tips downloadable flyer: WinterWise Driving Tips 

·  Road conditions and travel information: www.COtrip.org 

·  Chain and traction law information: www.codot.gov/admin/travel/winter-driving/tractionlaw

·  Sign up for project or travel alerts: bit.ly/COalerts

·  See scheduled lane closures: codot.gov/travel/scheduled-lane-closures.html 

·  Connect with us on social media: Twitter @coloradodot and Facebook facebook.com/coloradodot

CHAIN and TRACTION LAWS 

CDOT urges travelers to be aware of chain and traction law codes before heading out on the roadway.

  •  Code 18/Commercial Chain Law: Commercial vehicles and trucks must have chains. Vehicles without chains can often lose traction, causing traffic delays and sometimes road closures. For the safety of the traveling public, it's critical to use chains to be in compliance with Colorado's chain law.

  • Code 15/Passenger Traction Law: All motorists are required to either have an all-wheel or four-wheel drive vehicle, or (for two-wheel drive vehicles) snow tires or all-weather tires with a mud/snow designation. Tread depth on all tires must be at least 3/16" regardless of vehicle type. Vehicles that do not meet these criteria must carry chain devices or alternative traction devices such as an AutoSock. The law focuses on passenger vehicles, as commercial vehicles have their own restrictions. It is unlawful to proceed when a state highway is closed or to proceed when a restriction is in effect without the required traction equipment. Violators will be given a citation, which comes with a $100 fine and $32 surcharge. That jumps to a $500 fine with a $156 surcharge if a violation results in the closure of one or more traffic lanes.

  •  Code 16/Passenger Chain Law: All passenger vehicles need chains, except for 4WD and AWD vehicles with all-weather tires with 3/16 inch tread depth.

COVID-19 
Safe transportation infrastructure is essential for emergency first responders and freight drivers as Colorado navigates the COVID-19 pandemic. With that in mind, construction continues on CDOT projects with social distancing and other health safety measures to reduce COVID-19 exposure on the worksite. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment announced guidelines for construction activities. The public is urged to join the campaign for #DoingMyPartCO and practice social distancing, wear face masks, stay at home when possible, and avoid nonessential travel. With fewer vehicles on the roads, CDOT crews will be able to work more efficiently and safely.

WHOLE SYSTEM. WHOLE SAFETY. 

In early 2019, CDOT announced its Whole System — Whole Safety initiative to heighten safety awareness. This initiative takes a systematic statewide approach to safety combining the benefits of CDOT’s programs that address driving behaviors, our built environment and the organization's operations. The goal is to improve the safety of Colorado’s transportation network by reducing the rate and severity of crashes and improving the safety of all transportation modes. The program has one simple mission—to get everyone home safely.

ABOUT CDOT 

CDOT has approximately 3,000 employees located throughout Colorado, and manages more than 23,000 lane miles of highway and 3,429 bridges. CDOT also manages grant partnerships with a range of other agencies, including metropolitan planning organizations, local governments and airports. It also administers Bustang, the state-owned and operated inter-regional express service. Gov. Jared Polis has charged CDOT to further build on the state’s multimodal mobility options. 

Colorado: The Official State Web Portal