Anticipate heavy holiday traffic, motorists are urged to drive with extreme caution and be prepared

Travel Advisory

December 23, 2022 - Statewide - There will continue to be icy conditions until the weather warms up on Christmas Eve

Denver – The Colorado Department of Transportation reminds drivers to expect heavier than normal traffic in many areas of the state over the next week-and-a-half as people travel for the holidays.

CDOT crews have been working non-stop to clear and treat roads in sub-zero temperatures this week. There will continue to be icy conditions until the weather warms up on Christmas Eve. Even after the worst of the cold weather subsides, weather and road conditions can change quickly at this time of year, particularly along the Interstate 70 Mountain Corridor and other routes in the high country. Motorists are urged to be prepared for the harsh cold today that continues through tomorrow morning, especially if they are traveling to the mountains. This includes making sure their vehicles are well maintained with the appropriate winter tires and having an emergency kit in their vehicle to include blankets, extra clothing, a flash light, extra batteries, battery cables and chargers, food, water, an ice-scraper, a shovel, and kitty litter for traction. Motorists should check weather and road conditions before heading out, give themselves plenty of travel time, heed the speed limit, drive to the conditions, take it slow and leave plenty of following distance.

Drivers can receive updated road and weather information by calling 511 or by checking Specific information regarding I-70 also is available at:

To ease holiday travel, construction work is suspended over both the Christmas and New Year's holiday weekends (Dec. 23 to Dec. 26 and Dec. 30 to Jan. 2).

“It’s going to be a busy period on our roadways as Coloradans and visitors travel to spend time with family and friends and take advantage of their time off to recreate in the great outdoors,” said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “Bottom line is be prepared. Know the weather forecast and road conditions before you go. And be especially mindful of the need to drive sober. Be safe as you say goodbye to 2022 and begin 2023.”

Drivers should expect increased traffic along the Front Range before and after Christmas, due to the number of large shopping areas located on or near the urban corridors. Heavy traffic also is anticipated on I-70 between Denver and Eagle County during the week following Christmas due to typical increases in recreational travel.

Vehicles counts at the Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial Tunnels during last year’s holiday period:

Vehicles counts at the Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial Tunnels during last year’s holiday period

Let someone else do the driving - Ride Snowstang!

CDOT is running its Snowstang bus service on weekends and Monday holidays, with roundtrip express service to Arapahoe Basin, Copper Mountain, Loveland Ski Area, Steamboat Springs/Howelsen Hill and, new this year, Breckenridge. The service will not operate on Christmas Day. However, Snowstang is offering a special two-day, Saturday and Monday, Christmas weekend option to Steamboat Springs. For more information, please visit

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:

Remember: Slow For The Cone Zone

The following tips are to help you stay safe while traveling through maintenance and construction work zones.

  • Do not speed in work zones. Obey the posted speed limits.
  • Stay Alert! Expect the unexpected.
  • Watch for workers. Drive with caution.
  • Don't change lanes unnecessarily.
  • Avoid using mobile devices such as phones while driving in work zones.
  • Turn on headlights so that workers and other drivers can see you.
  • Be especially alert at night while driving in work zones.
  • Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.
  • Allow ample space between you and the car in front of you.
  • Anticipate lane shifts and merge when directed to do so.
  • Be patient!

Download the COtrip App!

The new FREE COtrip Planner mobile app was designed to meet the growing trend of information on mobile and tablet devices for the traveling public. The COtrip Planner app provides statewide, real-time traffic information, and works on mobile devices that operate on the iOS and Android platforms. Visit the Google Play Store (Android devices) or the Apple Store (iOS devices) to download!