Interstate Highway 70 is a popular way to traverse the Colorado Rocky Mountains when heading west. I-70 can be a long boring drive when crossing the flat Great Plains, but when the mountains of Colorado come into view that all changes. This high speed freeway is a major tourism corridor for all destinations in the Colorado Rocky Mountains and several National Parks. To top it all off, the last major attraction going west through this state on I-70 is the Colorado National Monument, which happens to be one of the most picturesque places on earth!
Touring I-70 West Through the Rockies is quite a nice scenic drive, especially since this trip can easily be done in one day. That is of course, if the weather permits. The winter months can bring plenty of snow to this mountainous region and this highway can quickly become impassible. If an unexpected blizzard is in the forecast, it may pay to wait out the storm for safety’s sake. During the mild spring and summer seasons, there are few problems that a driver will face when cruising on I-70 through the Rockies, other than the very steep incline grades.
Traveling on an Interstate Highway certainly is the fastest way to go, but the drawback is there are relatively few places to legally stop to take in the scenery. Only emergency stopping is permitted on freeways and there are not many official roadside scenic overlooks along the way. What this means is that the majority of the trip on I-70 through the Rockies will be for your eyes only. Taking a few little side trips on the roads that intersect with this highway in this region is the best option for soaking up the majestic views.
Several Rocky Mountain ski resort communities are located along I-70 and these towns are easy to access, so they do get busy. During the summer everybody is out camping, so there will be no long lines this time of year. Taking a break in a ski lodge community near the apex after doing the long uphill trek is a good way to steady the nerves, before starting the steep downhill run to Utah. By steep, I do mean a very steep downhill run that can be quite a scary ride for the uninitiated! Even after shifting into a lower gear, the brakes will literally smoke when trying to slow it down to a reasonably sane speed. The road does get curvy too, so being distracted even for a moment can spell disaster. The steep downhill run on I-70 from the apex of the Rockies to the Utah border definitely can be compared to a wild roller coaster ride!
After I-70 finally flattens out well into Utah, the seemingly endless panoramic views of the high desert begin to take shape. Many great National Parks are located near the highway across the border in central Utah, before this travel route eventually intersects with I-15. I-70 literally is the most popular vacationland corridor in the west, because a new adventure awaits at every exit in the Rocky Mountains!
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