Most Scenic Drives in Colorado: 11 Breathtaking Routes

San Juan Skyway – make sure to take a drive on Colorado’s first National Forest Scenic Byway

If you decide to travel southwest of Colorado this fall season, then you need to find yourself in a place known as San Juan Skyway. This 236-mile loop travels through the towns of Durango, Telluride, Ouray and Silverton.

The views from the San Juan Skyway are so attractive that the road was given the name the most beautiful drive in America. If you missed early season greenery found at higher elevations, then take a drive here to view greenery later in the season around the month of October

Trail Ridge Road – the Park is a gem that offers incredible scenic views all year round.

The aspens are known to change their colour from green to yellow in mid to late September, making it a great spot to visit for an early autumn getaway. The road that navigates through the park is called Trail Ridge Road. The road, which runs from Estes Park to Grand Lake, closes during the winter season, so it’s a last-chance opportunity to drive the road before the snow hits Rocky Mountain National Park. Fall is also the elk-rutting season in the park. So you’re bound to see plenty of elk herds, always remember to keep a safe detachment from wildlife.SK/

Top of the Rockies Byway – best known as being the highest incorporated city in the nation at 10,152 feet above sea level

Head to the high country early in the fall season so as to catch the changing aspen trees. The top of the Rockies Byway is approximately a 115-mile stretch of road coming from Copper Mountain to Aspen. You will cross the Continental Divide and be able to view plenty of Colorado’s highest peaks, commonly known as 14’ers. During the drive, make sure you sop by Leadville.

West Elk Loop The ever stunning views will definitely make for an unforgettable autumn drive.

This 205-mile road that runs through the towns of Gunnison and Crested Butte negotiates through the heart of the state. There will be ample photo shooting found along the road, however, there is one spot you shouldn’t miss if you’re hoping to view fall foliage, and that spot is Kebler Pass. Kebler Pass is home to the largest aspen grove in North America, as well as a brilliant sight during the fall season

Last Dollar Road – another picturesque road found in the south western part of the state that brags of jaw-dropping views of fall foliage.

This unpaved road from Telluride to Ridgway is only 40 miles and is a remote option for those hoping to escape the hustle of a busy highway. Even a 2WD vehicle will do well on the bumpy, unpaved road throughout the dry conditions. Along this road, you will drive through Dallas Divide, a spot that is bound to produce exceptional fall greenery vistas. For those who love camping fear not, there’s a spot for everyone.

Independence Pass – worth a Visit to the second highest pass in Colorado during the autumn season

Independence Pass, at an altitude of 12,095 feet above sea level, this route is found near the towns of Twin Lakes and Aspen. If you find yourself on the Aspen side of the pass, make sure to make a stop at the Maroon Bells, which is the most snapped spot in all of Colorado. This road closes in November, right around the time when the leaves fall off their branches, make sure to visit the place around autumn time so as to be amazed.

Peak to Peak Scenic Byway – a mere 55 mile byway which was established in 1918 and is known as one of the state’s oldest scenic byways.

This scenic byway is accessible for those visiting or who live in the Front Range cities of Denver, Boulder or popularly known as Fort Collins since it’s only about an hour’s drive to access. Peak to Peak Scenic Byway demonstrates great views of the Continental Divide and navigates through the town of Black Hawk as well as Estes Park.

Guanella Pass – you will be able to catch views of the Mount Evans and Mount Bierstadt not forgetting passing through the beautiful mountain town of Georgetown

The trip to Guanella Pass is another road that is easily reachable for those in the Front Range and in Denver. This short, 23-mile route is a famous place for weekend warriors to go to view fall greenery, make sure to remember that bit of information.

Highway of Legends – one fall drive which is another amazing choice for those hoping to view fall greenery late in the season.

This road crosses the southern slopes of Colorado. From La Veta to Trinidad, you are going to want to have your camera set along this exceptionally scenic route. As you climb up in altitude on this road, you will be greeted with spectacular views of the West and East Spanish Peaks. With significant towns found along the way, the drive along the highway has plenty of sights as well as activities.

Squaw Pass – this short  drive will lead you to Echo Lake as well as the town of Evergreen.

Denverites hoping to catch fall colours but aren’t too interested in staying in the car for hours should definitely hit the road to Squaw Pass. Starting in Idaho Springs, however, if you find that this scenic drive is too short for you, then you can always travel to Guanella Pass or you can always redirect your drive to pass through the Peak to Peak Byway.

Shrine Pass – dirt road that is less travelled but very picturesque

The windy dirt road is a scenic mountain pass that begins at Vail when travelling east from Vail on I-70 make sure to Exit onto the 190 for Vail Pass. Turn right then head west, straight onto the Shrine Pass dirt road) and ends at Redcliff. This road is less travelled and is an alternative to I-70.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back To Top