Nighttime snow removal operations set for US 550 mountain corridor next week

News Release

December 16, 2021 - Southwestern Colorado

SOUTHWEST COLORADO ― CDOT will perform nighttime winter maintenance operations on US Highway 550 Coal Bank, Molas and Red Mountain Passes next week. Crews will remove excess snow, where needed, from the shoulder of the highway to ensure there is optimal cleared lane space along the mountain corridor. Crews will also remove snow from the inside ditch and right-of-way (along the cliff side of the highway) to allow for additional snow storage that will be needed for plowing operations during future storms.

Traffic Impacts

Work will take place every night from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., Sunday through Wednesday, Dec. 19-22, from Cascade to Ouray, mileposts 51-91. The nighttime work will require lane shifts and intermittent, brief closures. Motorists are urged to drive with caution and watch for heavy equipment, operators and flagging personnel.

Watch Where You Park

Backcountry users and recreationists are urged to “watch where you park!” CDOT maintenance crews’ first priority is clearing the driving lanes of highways. Once this has been accomplished, crews will then clear the shoulders of the roadway and parking areas. Please remember to park only in clearly marked and designated parking areas. Anyone leaving a vehicle unattended on the side of the road, runs the risk of breaking the law, being fined, and having their vehicle towed away by law enforcement. (Download the flyer: “Watch Where You Park”)

Know Before You Go

Travelers are urged to “know before you go.” Gather information about weather forecasts, anticipated travel impacts, and current road conditions prior to hitting the road. CDOT resources include:

  • Travel webpage:
  • Mobile app: COtrip Planner
  • Check avalanche conditions at CAIC:
  • Phone hotlines for road and weather conditions: 511 or 303-639-1111
  • Sign up for project or travel alerts:
  • Subscribe to construction updates & news releases:
  • Follow social media: Twitter @coloradodot and Facebook