I-70 Glenwood Canyon Safety Closure Update: Friday, Aug. 13

August 13, 2021 - Northwestern Colorado

There are still several areas of the recreation path that will need material clean-up and repairs.
There are still several areas of the recreation path that will need material clean-up and repairs.

I-70 eastbound deck repairs at MP 123.5.

I-70 eastbound deck repairs at MP 123.5.
I-70 eastbound deck repairs at MP 123.5.


There are still several areas of the recreation path that will need material clean-up and repairs.

Note: photos for this update and all other summer photos are available in the media kit, which continues to be updated 

Cleanup operations continue today, with operations focused on sweeping and brooming the roadway. Paving has also commenced on the damaged sections of the interstate at MP 123.5 We hauled out around 110 loads of material from the canyon today to our temporary dump site at Bair Ranch and on Colorado Highway 82. 

We did not enter an official weather watch on Thursday from NOAA and there was no precipitation at the burn scar or in the canyon.  

Reopening Interstate 70

CDOT crews and agency partners are still on schedule to open one lane in each direction by sometime Saturday, Aug. 14. The National Weather Service is currently calling for possible precipitation today.

Interstate Clean up

On the east end of the canyon (east of Hanging Lake Tunnel): Crews focused on moving dirt behind the type 4 barrier, exposing and cleaning drains between MP 126 and MP 128. Crews hauled out 80 loads of material today on the west side. Crews also continued washing and cleaning operations in anticipation for Saturday's opening.   

The priority tomorrow will be to continue to sweep and wash west of Hanging Lake Rest Area. .

On the west end of the canyon (west of Hanging Lake Tunnel): Crews focused on washing and cleaning operations from No Name to Hanging Lake Tunnel. Crews hauled out 30 loads of material from the 119 dump site to our dump site on CO 82. 

Paving operations have commenced in the canyon today.

Beginning today, Friday, Aug. 13 from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. CDOT courtesy patrol will be on CO 82 Independence Pass to aid motorists in need.

Engineering Update

Engineering teams completed visual inspections at Milepost 123.5 (Blue Gluch) for the third consecutive day and the inspections confirm that damaged I-70 infrastructure can safely accommodate one-lane in each direction at this location with certain interim repairs prior to the overall emergency repair contract work. Engineering crews also advised the crews on a few construction items related to their emergency work at both Eastbound I-70 and Westbound I-70 Milepost 123.5 (Blue Gulch).

Emergency Repair plans and specifications were distributed to approximately a dozen contractors that have expressed interest in the emergency repair project. Interested contractors will attend a job showing at 9am on Friday. Bids are expected to be received on August 19th with award expected on August 20th.

Eastbound I-70 at mile point 123.5 will be one-lane in each direction and the one-lane closure will extend to approximately MP 124.2 once the canyon for several months. Grizzly Creek Rest Area will not open immediately as Xcel has relocated their generator to the Shoshone Dam and as a result, there is no power to the rest area. Hanging Lake Rest Area will remain closed until the USFS clears the trail. Bair Ranch Rest Area will remain closed for CDOT emergency mobilization. No Name Rest Area will be open when I-70 opens. Shoshone Rest Area will be open when I-70 opens.

CDOT continues to coordinate with Xcel Energy at Blue Gulch as Xcel’s infrastructure includes a high voltage line that provides service to UPRR and the Shoshone Dam and Hanging Lake Tunnel within Glenwood Canyon. Xcel crews installed both poles for temporary power restoration and will be pulling lines on Friday.

Please note clean up work, repairs and reopening is weather dependent. Rain on the Grizzly Creek burn area may prompt additional mudslides.