Spring is in the air, and the crews with San Miguel, Ouray and San Juan counties have been working feverishly to open the high country to adventurers near and far. This time of year is a great time to go out and explore, seasonal waterfalls appear at every turn, and the land is green and vibrant, with a touch of snow.
According to county websites, Switzerland of America Jeep Tours, and word of mouth, these are the current conditions of four wheel drive roads in the area:
Animas Forks: OPEN
Black Bear Pass: CLOSED – estimated open before July 4, 2018
Bolam Pass – CLOSED
Brown Mountain – OPEN
California Pass – CLOSED
Clear Lake – CLOSED
Cinnamon Pass – OPEN to Lake City
Corkscrew Pass – OPEN to the top on the east side – Work in progress on Ouray side
County Road 110 – OPEN
County Road 2 – OPEN
Divide Road 564 – CLOSED
Engineer Pass – Lower end to 550 CLOSED, OPEN on Lake City side
Hurricane Pass – CLOSED
Imogene Pass – CLOSED
Kennebec Pass – CLOSED
La Plata Canyon(County Road 124) – OPEN to Columbus
Last Dollar – CLOSED
Lobo Overlook – CLOSED
Maggie Gulch – CLOSED
Mineral Point – CLOSED
Minnehaha – OPEN
Minnie Gulch – CLOSED
Norwood/Dolores Road – OPEN
Ophir Pass – OPEN to the top on the east side
Owl Creek Pass – OPEN to west fork
Picayune – CLOSED
Placer – OPEN to upper north side
Poughkeepsie – CLOSED
Red Mountain Town – OPEN
Scotch Creek – CLOSED
South Mineral Road – OPEN to the campground
Stony Pass – OPEN to the top on the west side
Treasure Mountain Loop – CLOSED
Yankee Boy Basin – OPEN to Twin Falls
As always, regardless of the time of year, please remember to be safe in the high country! Weather can change quickly and dramatically. If you come across a portion of road or weather that makes you uncomfortable, turn around. With over 500 miles of four wheel drive trails in easy access of town, there is no reason to put yourself at risk.
Remember to always bring layers. The sun might be shining one minute, and a downpour hit the next. With that in mind, sunscreen might sound ridiculous, but sunburns do hurt. Check either with us, or one of the many jeep rental/tour companies for the most up to date road conditions. There is no sense in getting yourself stuck in a bad spot if you don’t have to. Please remember the rules of the road when adventuring on the high country. Be considerate of your fellow jeepers and four wheelers!
As OHV’s become more popular, we get a lot of questions regarding in town usage. Please read our town ordinances by clicking this link, as the Ouray Police Department has been working diligently to enforce the laws pertaining to OHV’s and will no longer be giving warnings to individuals who are violating the ordinance; instead, they will be cited with a ticket. The first offense is a $100 fine, the second is $300 and anything after that, will be a court summons with a $300-$500 fine.
There are some amazing jeep tour and rental companies in Ouray, who are always happy to help with information, and of course a tour means you don’t have to worry about where you’re going, just whether there is enough memory on your camera!
No matter what, HAVE FUN! The San Juan Mountains are beautiful, and never quite the same.