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Road to Mount Blue Sky summit will not open in 2025 due to improvement project

Mount Evans May 2023_Colorado Department of Transportation
Posted at 11:39 PM, May 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-03 09:52:51-04

IDAHO SPRINGS, Colo. — The roadway that takes you from the summit to the peak of Mount Blue Sky will not open in 2025 due to a planned improvement project, the USDA Forest Service announced Thursday.

Mount Blue Sky, formerly known as Mount Evans, is the 14th tallest fourteener in the state, and the Mount Blue Sky Scenic Byway — also known as Colorado Highway 5 — is the highest paved road in North America. The Forest Service said the project will:

  • Repair the damaged roadway from the Summit Lake overflow parking lot to the first switchback past the lake
  • Improve public safety
  • Reduce ongoing impacts on the ecosystem
  • Restore the natural hydraulic processes throughout the area

Construction will begin in late July or early August with a temporary lane closure near Summit Lake. From Sept. 3 through all of 2025, the roadway will be closed to "motorized and non-motorized travel (foot, bike, etc.)," according to the Forest Service. The closure will span the entire roadway.
The summit will only be accessible via various hiking trails. The Forest Service said the area will open on Memorial Day Weekend 2026 as conditions allow.

Echo Lake Park, Echo Lake Campground and the Chicago Lakes and Mount Blue Sky Summit trails will remain open throughout the project. The Forest Service said more information will be made available in the coming months.

The Federal Highway Administration, Forest Service and Denver Mountain Parks are partnering on the project.

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Local News

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Stephanie Butzer
11:51 AM, Jul 14, 2020

There is good news! The Mount Blue Sky Recreation Area is tentatively scheduled to open for 2024 on May 31. That plan can change, the Forest Service warned Thursday.

“Mount Blue Sky Recreation Area requires a full team to manage, from operating the welcome station to cleaning the restrooms at the summit,” said Clear Creek District Ranger Patsy McEntee in a statement. “With Memorial Day occurring earlier in May this year, increasing the potential for weather impacts, and to align with seasonal employee start dates, we’ve decided to delay the traditional opening by a week. We hope making this decision early helps the public plan ahead.”

Reservations open at 8 a.m. on May 21 and can be made up to 30 days before your visit. For more information, click here.

Road to Mount Blue Sky summit will not open in 2025 due to improvement project


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