The weather has definitely shifted, but there are still adventures to be had!

As temperatures drop, and much needed moisture drapes the peaks in a thin blanket of fresh snow, we welcome the end of Fall and the beginning of a new season.

As of October 15, 2018, Ouray County released the following statement regarding four-wheel drive roads:
“Road & Bridge Department 111 Mall Road P.O. Box 456 Ridgway, CO 81432 Phone: 970-626-5391 Fax: 970-626-4439 October 15, 2018 Ouray County High Country 4×4 Roads will receive no further maintenance for the winter season after October 15, 2018. Snow and icy conditions may exist now, or at any time after maintenance has ceased. Travel on the 4×4 roads this time of year is not recommended due to variable conditions and expected winter weather at high elevations. Drive at your own risk. Ouray County 4×4 roads include: Yankee Boy Basin, Corkscrew Pass, Imogene Pass, Engineer Pass, Governor’s Basin, and Owl Creek Pass. Check with other counties for information regarding their road conditions.”

San Miguel County and the San Juan National Forest have provided the following information based on information provided by local contacts as of October 12, 2018:
*Be aware that passes can vary with weather any time of year. Some may be slick in areas, washed out or snow covered, even if they are listed as OPEN.  Please don’t go beyond where you are comfortable driving. Be safe out there!
 
Animas Forks – OPEN
Black Bear Pass – OPEN
Bolam Pass – OPEN
California – OPEN
Clear Lake – OPEN
Cinnamon Pass –  OPEN
Corkscrew Pass – OPEN
County Road 110 – OPEN
County Road 2 – OPEN
Cunningham Gulch – OPEN
Divide Road 564 – OPEN
Engineer Pass – OPEN
Engineer Pass – Lower end to 550- OPEN
Hurricane Pass – OPEN
Imogene Pass – OPEN
Kennebec Pass – OPEN
La Plata Canyon (County Road 124) – OPEN
Lobo Overlook – OPEN
Maggie Gulch – OPEN
Mineral Point – OPEN
Minnehaha – OPEN
Minnie Gulch – OPEN
Ophir Pass – OPEN
Owl Creek Pass – OPEN
Picayune – OPEN
Placer – OPEN
Poughkeepsie  – OPEN
Scotch Creek – OPEN
South Mineral Road  – OPEN
Stony Pass – OPEN
Treasure Mountain Loop – OPEN
Yankee Boy Basin – OPEN

As always, all of us at the Box Canyon Lodge & Hot Springs make every attempt to hane the most up to date information regarding conditions in the high country. We not only check the above websites, but also depend on the information provided by our guests.

Regardless of the time of year, it is important to be prepared when exploring the high country. Be sure to let someone know where you plan on exploring and when you plan on returning. At the end of the season, most of the tour companies have closed for the season, so be aware that although less traffic can be nice, that also means a smaller chance of help. That makes it all the more important to check the weather closely before setting out. If it is raining here in Ouray, chances are high that there will be heavy snow at higher altitudes. When in doubt, turn around – there are still so many trails at lower elevations that are great fun and safer.

After a day adventuring, be sure to let us know if conditions have changed before warming up with a long soak in our all natural hot spring tubs!

 

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