Colorado Highways: Routes 60 to 79

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60

Location: North Front Range
Length*: 19.35mi signed; 20.20mi implied
W End: Jct US 287 at Campion
E End: Jct US 85 southwest of Gilcrest

Counties: Larimer, Weld
Places: Campion, Johnson's Corner, Johnstown, Milliken

Broken Route: SH 60 has a gap of one mile in it from the I-25 underpass at Milepost 253 to I-25 Exit 252.

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: US 287, Campion (begin SH 60 in Larimer County)
  • 0.93: Begin Larimer/Weld County split
  • 4.97: I-25 east frontage road (end SH 60)
  • 5.82: I-25 Exit 252 interchange (begin SH 60 in Weld County)
  • 11.85: SH 257, Milliken
  • 20.20: US 85 southwest of Gilcrest (end SH 60)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 2700 at US 287
  • 1800 at I-25 underpass, Johnson's Corner
  • 9400 east of I-25
  • 6200 east of SH 257, Milliken
  • 4400 south of Two Rivers Pkwy
  • 3600 at US 85

Guide:
SH 60 starts at US 287 at Campion, then heads due west on the Larimer/Weld County Line to I-25. SH 60 has an underpass there (I-25 Milepost 253), then ends at the east frontage road. SH 60 starts again at the diamond interchange at Exit 252, then heads east through Johnstown and Milliken, then abruptly takes a turn south and goes across the South Platte River, ending at US 85.

The situation at I-25 is kinda weird. While SH 60 going east from I-25 has a direct interchange (Exit 252), going west from I-25 has no direct access. The next exit north (Exit 254) is signed as "TO [60] WEST Campion". That exit is unofficially known as Johnson's Corner due to the truck stop there with that name. However, if you're coming north on I-25 and are planning on taking SH 60 west, you're better off taking the 60 East exit (Exit 252), then taking the east frontage north one mile to where SH 60 heads west. If you were to go up to Exit 254, you would simply be directed to take the frontage road back south to the underpass, resulting in two extra miles of travel.

Photo Gallery:

  • SH 257 Intersection. Westbound on SH 60 at the SH 257 intersection in Milliken. Photo by Dale Sanderson. (March 2007)

History:
SH 60 is an original 1920s state highway, with the routing the same as now. By 1939 it was paved from Johnstown to US 85, and was entirely paved by 1946. The I-25 freeway was completed through the area about 1963, chopping SH 60 up. Previously it had a one-mile multiplex with US 87.

Suggestions:
Section west of I-25 is better suited as a county road.

If you're not going to get rid of it, then on northbound I-25 you should also call Exit 252 the Campion exit in addition to Johnstown and Milliken, and say just "[60]" instead of "[60] EAST". Northbound Exit 254 could be called just "Johnson's Corner".



61

Location: North Eastern Plains
Length*: 40.99mi
S End: Jct US 34 at Dade Ave. and 1st St. in Otis
N End: Jct US 6 just east of Sterling

Counties: Washington, Logan
Places: Otis

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: US 34, Otis (begin SH 61 in Washington County)
  • 21.71: Enter Logan County
  • 40.99: US 6 (end SH 61)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 920 at US 34, Otis
  • 430 north of CR 48
  • 810 north of CR 4
  • 2400 at US 6

History:
SH 61 is an original 1920s state highway numbered via the loose geographical system that existed on the Eastern Plains. Its alignment originally was from US 36 west of Cope north via Otis and northwest via Kelley (at Logan CR 6/57) to SH 14/US 38 east of Sterling. By 1930 the routing of US 38 east of Sterling had changed and SH 154 was run over its former route, so SH 61 ended at it. By 1939 SH 61's route between US 36 and Otis had been changed so it passed through De Nova (Washington CR RR/20) rather than passing to the west of it. By 1940 the routing south of Sterling had changed to its modern routing so it didn't pass through Kelly. By 1952 a portion from SH 154 south to the Washington County line has been paved.

In 1954 both ends of SH 61 changed. The section from US 36 to Otis was turned back so it had its south end at Otis. In the north, all of SH 154 was turned back to, so SH 61 was extended along its former route west to end at US 6 near Sterling. By 1957 all of SH 61 was paved.



62

Location: Western Slope
Length*: 23.40mi
W End: Jct SH 145 at Placerville
E End: Jct US 550 east of Ridgway

Counties: San Miguel, Ouray
Places: Placerville, Dallas Divide, Ridgway

Mountain Passes: Dallas Divide (8970ft; 5% grade west side; 6.4% grade east side)

Scenic & Historic Byways: San Juan Skyway America's Byways

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: SH 145, Placerville (begin SH 62 in San Miguel County)
  • 12.63: Enter Ouray County, Dallas Divide
  • 23.40: US 550, Ridgway (end SH 62)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 3700 at SH 145, Placerville
  • 3900 west of CR 24A
  • 8100 at US 550, Ridgway

History:
SH 62 is an original 1920s state highway. No major alignment changes. By 1949 it was all paved except for Dallas Divide, and that was paved by 1954.



63

Location: North Eastern Plains
Length*: 56.41mi
S End: Jct US 36 at Anton
N End: Jct US 6 at Atwood

Counties: Washington, Logan
Places: Anton, Akron, Atwood

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: Jct US 36, Anton (begin SH 63 in Washington County)
  • 29.00: US 34, Akron
  • 48.20: Enter Logan County
  • 53.29: I-76 Exit 115 interchange south of Atwood
  • 56.41: US 6, Atwood (end SH 63)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 340 at US 36, Anton
  • 370 north of CR 17
  • 780 north of CR 36
  • 1600 south of US 34, Akron
  • 640 north of CR 51
  • 660 south of I-76
  • 2000 at US 6, Atwood
Photo Gallery:
  • Atwood Rail Crossing. Looking south from US 6 at SH 63's BNSF rail crossing as a train approaches. (May 2007)
  • End 63/US 6 Signs. Signs at the US 6 intersection for northbound SH 63 traffic. (May 2007)

History:
SH 63 is an original 1920s highway numbered via the loose geographical system. At first, SH 63 had its south end at SH 96 at Haswell, and went north via Boyero, Arriba, Thurman and Akron to Atwood. By 1939 there were spurs added at each end, from Atwood westward and from Haswell south to US 50 near Fort Lyon. By 1946 part of SH 63 had been turned back so that there was a gap from north of Haswell to south of Boyero. By 1954 the route was trimmed significantly so that it went only from Anton to Atwood. Was all paved by 1961.

Dale Sanderson reports in December 2003 that when one exits I-70 to CR 43 at Arriba, the street names signs call the road "CR 43 / Hwy 63". That's interesting, considering that hasn't been part of SH 63 since about 1954.



64

Location: North Western Slope
Length*: 73.70mi
W End: Jct US 40 at Brontosaurus Blvd. and Stegosaurus Fwy in Dinosaur
E End: Jct SH 13 west of Meeker

Counties: Moffat, Rio Blanco
Places: Dinosaur, Rangely, Meeker

Scenic & Historic Byways: Dinosaur Diamond (US 40 to SH 139) America's Byways

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: US 40, Dinosaur (begin SH 64 in Moffat County)
  • 1.84: Enter Rio Blanco County
  • 19.79: SH 139, Rangely
  • 73.70: SH 13 (end SH 64)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 1800 at US 40, Dinosaur
  • 1400 west of CR 21
  • 6600 at White Ave., Rangely
  • 2000 east of SH 139
  • 1200 east of CR 65
  • 1400 east of CR 5
  • 3600 at SH 13

Guide:
SH 64 serves as Rio Blanco County's major east-west road, connecting the county's two main towns, Rangely and Meeker. After starting at US 40 in Dinosaur, it heads southeast to Rangely, passing through town on Main Street. From Rangely, SH 64 follows the White River valley all the way to Meeker, ending at SH 13 a couple miles west of town. Along the way it passes Kenney Reservoir.

Photo Gallery:
  • Central Rangely. Westbound on Main Street in the middle of town. (January 2009)
  • Entering Rangely. Using a lot of the camera's zoom to look all the way through Rangely and out the other side of town, as one enters on westbound SH 64. (January 2009)
  • Kenney Reservoir. Taylor Draw Dam holds back Kenney Reservoir. Here eastbound SH 64 skirts along its frozen-over south shoreline. (January 2009)
  • Milepost 41. Scenery on eastbound SH 64, about a half-hour from Meeker. (January 2009)
  • SH 13 Approach. Good shot of the marker signs on SH 64 approaching the SH 13 intersection outside Meeker. (January 2009)

History:
SH 64 is an original 1920s highway. At first, however, it continued west from south of Dinosaur into Utah, rather than turning north toward Dinosaur. By 1939 a spur was added that went from Meeker southeast. By 1946 the west end was moved to US 40. The spur east of Meeker was eliminated by 1954, and by 1955 all of SH 64 was paved.

The town at the western end of SH 64 is not shown on maps until the 1940s. At first it's called Sand Springs, then when it incorporated in 1947 it was named Artesia, and then renamed to Dinosaur by 1965 to capitalize on nearby Dinosaur National Monument.



65

Location: Western Slope
Length*: 61.38mi
SE End: Jct SH 92 northeast of Delta
NW End: Jct I-70 Exit 49 northeast of Palisade

Counties: Delta, Mesa
Places: Orchard City, Cedaredge, Skyway, Mesa

Scenic & Historic Byways: Grand Mesa (Cederedge to I-70) America's Byways

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: SH 92 (begin SH 65 in Delta County)
  • 29.96: Enter Mesa County
  • 51.16: SH 330 north of Mesa
  • 61.38: I-70 Exit 49 interchange (end SH 65)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 7800 at SH 92
  • 6000 north of CR 21
  • 820 north of CR U.50
  • 440 north of CR AA.50
  • 1800 south of SH 330
  • 2300 at I-70

Guide:
SH 65 has four distinct sections to it. They are the Orchard City-Cedaredge area, south Grand Mesa, north Grand Mesa, and Plateau Creek canyon.

From SH 92, SH 65 heads north across the flat plain of Surface Creek and surrounding fruit country. If it's the right time of the year, expect to see lots of fruit stands along the road. Orchard City is large as far as geogrpahic area, extending almost the entire distance from SH 92 to the south limits of Cederedge. Not a very dense city, though. In Cedaredge, SH 65 passes north through town on Grand Mesa Drive, skirting the east side of downtown.

After leaving Cedaredge, SH 65 begins climbing the south face of Grand Mesa. There are several not-very tight switchbacks as it goes up the grass-filled south slope. Eventually it reaches an elevation where the trees become more dense and enters Grand Mesa National Forest. The top of Grand Mesa levels out at about elevation 10,600', and SH 65 spends a couple miles going across alpine meadows on the somewhat flat top. There's also a National Forest visitors center.

After crossing into Mesa County SH 65 begins descending the north side of Grand Mesa. The north side has much more in the way of switchbacks and drop offs than the south side does, but straightening out near Powderhorn Ski Area. From Powderhorn north to the crossroads town of Mesa, SH 65 continues a fairly steep descent, but on a straight alignment.

North of Mesa at the SH 330 intersection, SH 65 takes an abrupt curve to the west and enters into the canyon for Plateau Creek. SH 65 follows the canyon west down to I-70, a twisty, slow alignment surrounded by towering canyon walls. About 3/4 mile from I-70, a ramp to eastbound I-70 splits off and stays on the north side of Plateau Creek (SH 65's historic alignment) while mainline SH 65 crosses over to the south side of the creek and intersects I-70 with a 3/4 diamond interchange.

Photos:

  • Jct SH 92 Signs. Sign assembly on SH 65 approaching the SH 92 intersection. (September 2011)
  • Cedaredge. Southbound on SH 65 as it cruises through Cedaredge. (September 2011)
  • South Slope Grand Mesa Descent. Southbound on SH 65 as it descends the slope of the south side of Grand Mesa north of Cedaredge. (September 2011)
  • Top of Grand Mesa. Southbound on SH 65 on the top of Grand Mesa as it spends a couple miles crossing flat alpine meadows. (September 2011)
  • Northbound Grand Mesa Descent. A view down northbound SH 65 as it descends the north side of Grand Mesa. (September 2011)
  • Southbound Climb Up Grand Mesa Picture 1 & Picture 2. Two pictures as southbound SH 65 climbs up the north side of Grand Mesa. At times it's a tree-lined route, other times it's on the side of a cliff. (September 2011)
  • Grand Mesa National Forest. This sign greets southbound SH 65 travelers on the north slope of Grand Mesa. (September 2011)
  • There are Moose Outside Alaska. Yes, there are some moose on Grand Mesa, so CDOT makes note of it as SH 65 begins climbing the north slope of it south of Mesa. Ski runs for Powderhorn Ski Area can be seen behind the sign. (September 2011)
  • Mesa. Southbound SH 65 heading through the crossroads town of Mesa. The store on left offers guns, pizza, drinks and "Mom's fudge". Interesting combination. (September 2011)
  • SH 65 Destinations. This sign faces drivers coming to the stop on SH 330. (September 2011)
  • Plateau Creek Canyon Eastbound and Westbound. SH 65 between I-70 and SH 330 features views like this as it winds its way through the deep canyon of Plateau Creek. (September 2011)

History:
SH 65 is an original 1920s state highway. At first, what is now SH 330 started off as a spur of SH 65. By 1939, SH 65 was extended from Delta southeast to SH 90 along US 50's southwest side, and the spur was renumbered to SH 330. By 1947 SH 65 was paved from SH 92 to Cedaredge, and then by 1954 the south end was trimmed back to SH 92 and more paving was done from US 6 to Mesa. The last section to be paved was south of Mesa in the mid 1960s.

Realignment to the south side of Plateau Creek at I-70 happened in 1965.



66

Location: North Front Range
Length*: 22.69mi
W End: Jct US 36 east of Lyons
E End: Jct US 85 in Platteville

Counties: Boulder, Weld
Places: Lyons, Hygiene, Longmont, Platteville

Milepost Guide:

  • 28.69: US 36 east of Lyons (begin SH 66 in Boulder County)
  • 36.62: US 287, Longmont
  • 38.92: Enter Weld County
  • 42.73: I-25 Exit 243 interchange northeast of Longmont
  • 51.23: BR US 85/Main St., Platteville
  • 51.38: US 85, Platteville (end SH 66)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 8100 at US 36, Lyons
  • 9800 east of 75th St
  • 21,900 west of US 287, Longmont
  • 11,600 east of I-25
  • 5800 east of CR 19
  • 6000 at US 85, Platteville

Roadway Names: Ute Road in Boulder County east of Lyons.

Guide:
SH 66 is a very important highway in the North Front Range, serving a lot of traffic. The western end is a T intersection with a signal light at US 36, and one can go straight going from 36 southeastbound to 66 eastbound. Between US 287 and I-25 (Exit 243) it has an oddball speed limit of 60mph, and is 65mph east of I-25. Personally, I've used SH 66 when going from Fort Collins to Boulder as a bypass of the awful congestion in central Longmont, by taking 66 west from 287 to Hover Street, then that south to SH 119.

Photo Gallery:

  • SH 66 (Former Estes Park Section) South End. SH 66's (Estes Park section) south end, as shot by Dale Sanderson. Dale says: "In the attached photo, we're looking south on 66. The bridge in the middleground is where the Big Thompson exits Moraine Park, crosses under the highway, and begins flowing alongside the road (towards the camera). That river may form the north boundary of YMCA property - I don't know."
  • Unusual "Highway 66" Marker. After the Estes Park section of SH 66 was turned back, apparently the name of the road was kept as Highway 66 rather than becoming a county road number or something. This is the marker on US 36 that replaced the state highway marker. You normally don't ever see a marker like this in Colorado. (August 2008)

History:
SH 66 is an original 1920s state highway. It originally started at US 87 in north Longmont, then went to Lyons, then via current US 36 ending in east Estes Park. Longmont to Platteville routing was not a state highway. Also, the section just west of US 87 originally was shifted a little further south, so that it first went west on 17th Ave. to Hygiene, then north on 75th St., then west on its current route. The section from Longmont to Platteville was added by 1939, and was paved from Estes Park to Longmont. By 1946 it was shifted to the north west of Longmont so that it didn't go through Hygiene. By 1954 the only section not paved was from SH 185 (current I-25) east to Platteville, and that was paved by 1960.

Okay, now for trying to explain the former Estes Park section. I finally managed to figure this out thanks to several lengthy e-mails with Ed Breed. Basically it all has to do with an entrance station into RMNP moving. Here are some maps to help with the explanation, showing the area between Estes Park and RMNP. The dashed blue line is the Big Thompson River.

SH 66 was extended westward from Estes Park to Deer Ridge Junction when the new Beaver Meadows Entrance Station opened to RMNP. Previously, SH 262 had taken the route from Estes Park to to Deer Ridge Junction, but that was via the now-defunct Big Thompson Entrance Station near Moraine Park (see left map). With the opening of the new entrance station in 1960, SH 66 was extended along old SH 262, and then what was SH 262 from the new roadway to the old entrance station and the bridge over the river became Spur SH 66 (see middle map), although according to maps the 262 to 66 renumbering didn't happen until around 1964-1965. Maybe the maps lagged a few years behind the changes out in the field.

In 1967, the Denver-Boulder Turnpike became free and US 36 was extended to US 34 at east Estes Park and took over SH 66's route from Lyons to Estes Park. US 36 was again extended in 1977, from east Estes Park to Deer Ridge Junction, taking over another part of SH 66 (see right map). The result of the 1977 renumbering was leaving the stand-alone Estes Park section of SH 66 hanging all by itself. It totaled *1.41mi from US 36 up to the Big Thompson bridge. That section of SH 66 was turned back in spring 2007 as part of the North Front Range route swap.

Suggestions:
Needs to be widened from US 36 to I-25, particularly for 3 or so miles west of US 287.



67

Location: South Front Range > Central Mountains > South Metro Denver
Length*: 79.57mi
S End: Jct SH 96 at Wetmore
N End: Jct US 85 at Sedalia

Counties: Custer, Fremont, Teller, Douglas
Places: Wetmore, Florence, Victor, Cripple Creek, Divide, Woodland Park, Deckers, Sedalia

Double Broken Route: Used to be continuous, but two separate sections were turned back to the respective counties.

South Section
Length*: 15.00mi
S End: Jct SH 96 at Wetmore
N End: Jct US 50 north of Florence
Milepost Guide:
  • 0.00: SH 96, Wetmore (begin SH 67 in Custer County)
  • 1.58: Enter Fremont County
  • 11.05: East jct SH 115, Florence
  • 11.56: West jct SH 115, Florence
  • 15.00: US 50 north of Florence (end SH 67)
Middle Section
Length*: 54.48mi
S End: Victor Ave. and 4th St. in Victor
N End: Jct Jefferson CR 126/Douglas CR 67 at Deckers
Milepost Guide:
  • 45.56: Victor Ave./4th St., Victor (begin SH 67 in Teller County)
  • 69.65: West jct US 24, Divide
  • 76.92: East jct US 24, Woodland Park
  • 87.14: Enter Douglas County
  • 100.04: CR 126/67, Deckers (end SH 67)
North Section
Length*: 10.09mi
S End: Intersection of Douglas CR 67 and Rampart Range Road
N End: Jct US 85 at Sedalia
Milepost Guide:
  • 117.35: Rampart Range Road (begin SH 67 in Douglas County)
  • 126.73: SH 105
  • 127.44: US 85, Sedalia (end SH 67)

NHS: While concurrent with US 24 from Divide to Woodland Park

Expressway: Five-lane undivided with US 24 from Divide to Woodland Park

Scenic & Historic Byways: Gold Belt Tour (Victor to Cripple Creek) America's Byways

Memorial Desginations: POW/MIA Memorial Highway (Cripple Creek to Divide)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

South Section

  • 1400 at SH 96
  • 1600 north of CR 51
  • 4400 south of SH 115, Florence
  • 7000 on SH 115-67
  • 2600 north of SH 115

Middle Section

  • 1300 in Victor
  • 910 north of Victor
  • 3500 at Bennett Ave., Cripple Creek
  • 4200 north of CR 82
  • 5300 south of US 24, Divide
  • 8400 north of US 24, Woodland Park
  • 1800 north of CR 75
  • 560 at Deckers

North Section

  • 1100 at Rampart Range Rd.
  • 1700 north of Oak Valley Rd.
  • 6400 at US 85, Sedalia

Guide:
Yep, this is a weird route. Wetmore to Sedalia, but two sections have been turned back to the respective counties.

From Wetmore and SH 96, SH 67 goes 15mi north, coming into Florence on Robinson Avenue. It turns left on Main St overlapping with SH 115 for several blocks, then turns  north on Pikes Peak Avenue out of town. The south section ends at a US 50 intersection north of Florence. The section as Fremont CR 67/Teller CR 86, a.k.a. Phantom Canyon Road, is 31mi from US 50 to Victor, following an extremely curvy, slow, old narrow-guage railroad alignment.

From Victor SH 67 heads northwest through very mountainous terrain passing the huge Victor-Cripple Creek gold mine, whose leach piles dominate the skyline for awhile. At Arequa Gulch SH 67 crosses the gulch via an impressively high, 1200 foot-long brige. Cripple Creek occupies a relatively flat part of terrain, with SH 67 coming north into town on 2nd St then turning east on Bennett Ave. It then climbs up via several switchbacks northeast out of town.

Most of the distance from north of Cripple Creek to Divide is spent in windy, mountainous terrain, generally not following any defined canyons. At one point SH 67 passes through a large rock cut that bypasses the old one-lane Waters Tunnel it used to go through. Eventually SH 67 comes to level terrain and heads straight north to an intersection with US 24 at Divide.

SH 67 turns east along US 24 to Woodland Park, then takes a turn north off US 24. SH 67 follows the Trout Creek valley for awhile north of Woodland Park, then jumps over to the West Creek Canyon, which it follows northwest to the town of Deckers. "Town" is used rather loosely here, since Deckers is only a couple of buildings. Deckers falls on the Jefferson/Douglas County line on the South Fork of the South Platte River, so the intersection SH 67 ends at is Jefferson CR 126/Douglas CR 67.

Douglas CR 67 is 17mi long along Sugar Creek Road, and then SH 67 starts again at Rampart Range Road and heads northeast to US 85 at Sedalia. The first couple of miles northeast of Rampart Range Road are slow going with a couple of sharp curves and a steep grade.

Photo Gallery:

  • End SH 67 at Wetmore. An informative series of signs on southbound SH 67 approaching SH 96. (May 2013)
  • North of Wetmore. The scene on northbound SH 67 a couple miles north of Wetmore. Way off in the distance is Pikes Peak. (May 2013)
  • Bridge Detour. About five miles north of Wetmore a bridges was damaged by a flash flood in July 2012, and a detour was built to get traffic around the bridge site while the bridge was rebuilt in 2013. As seen on northbound SH 67 the detour uses some 20-mph curves to the east side of the bridge. (May 2013)
  • SH 67-115 Downtown Florence. The scene on Main Street eastbound through downtown Florence. (September 2012)
  • Approaching SH 115 Intersection. Southbound on Pikes Peak Ave in downtown Florence as SH 67 approaches the left turn at Main St. (September 2012)
  • Victor. Southbound SH 67 as it comes into Victor. (September 2010)
  • Gold Mine Tailings Pile. Here north of Victor, this tailings pile from the gold mine totally fills the skyline. Gold mining is messy business, as this pile has a cyanide solution dripping down through it. (September 2010)
  • Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek. Things are hopping in Cripple Creek on this Saturday afternoon. Westbound at 3rd St, on southbound SH 67. (September 2010)
  • Cripple Creek Split Level Street. This median in Cripple Creek, from 3rd to 4th Sts, separates Bennett Ave into two different elevations. (September 2010)
  • Two Ways to Victor. At CR 81 north of Cripple Creek, drivers on southbound SH 67 get informed of the two ways to Victor: Right via SH 67 or left via CR 81. The sign features a rarely seen county pentagon on a guide sign. (September 2010)
  • Fall Colors North of Cripple Creek. The scenery on northbound SH 67 north of Cripple Creek during the height of fall colors. (September 2010)
  • Waters Tunnel: Bypass RoadSouth PortalInterior at South Portal. The one-lane Waters Tunnel was bypassed in 1993 (see History below). The bypass road is visble off to the left curving around the tunnel. Looking through the portal one can still see interior beams, guardrail, reflectors and light fixtures. (September 2010)
  • South of Divide. Southbound on SH 67 in the mountainous section between Divide and Cripple Creek. (September 2010)
  • Northbound Approaching US 24. Markers on SH 67 as it comes up to US 24 at Divide, showing the overlap to the east. (September 2010)
  • East of Divide. As seen on eastbound US 24/SH 67, it has a five-lane undivded section. (May 2013)
  • Woodland Park SH 67 Intersection. The eastbound US 24/SH 67 split features this large destination sign. (September 2010)

History:
SH 67 is an original 1920s state highway, and at first it had no gaps in it. By 1938 the first section of it was paved, from Cripple Creek to Victor, and by 1946 more paving was complete from US 24 south for about 8mi. By 1954 two sections of SH 67 had been turned back, resulting in gaps from Florence to Victor and Woodland Park to Rampart Range Road. In 1957 the section between Florence and US 50 was brought back into the system, and SH 67 was all paved by 1958. The section from Woodland Park to Deckers was brought back by 1968.

North of Cripple Creek SH 67 used to go through the 475-foot, timber-supported Waters Tunnel. Named for Jessie Waters, superintendent of the Midland Terminal Railway, it was built in 1893 as the railroad pushed toward Cripple Creek. The railroad ceased operations in 1931 and the tunnel was converted to use for SH 67 in 1949. It remained as a one-lane tunnel for cars until 1993 when there was a partial collapse. SH 67 was rerouted via a new rock cut around the tunnel, and today the south portal of the tunnel is accessible to walk right up to. Through the bars on the door sealing it off you can still see the timber supports, lights, side guardrail and reflectors.

Between Victor and Cripple Creek SH 67 was realigned in 2001 to let the Victor-Cripple Creek mine take over more terrain. This was when the large Arequa Gluch bridge was built.

A major flash flood hit SH 67 south of Deckers on July 7, 2006. West Creek destoryed at least 30 sections of a 5-mile segment of SH 67 between Deckers and Westcreek.  CDOT bid out emergency repairs to get a one-lane emergency and resident access road open by August 7, and the fully-repaired road reopened to general traffic October 27. The repairs, by Sema Construction, cost $11M which was under budget, and finished ahead of schedule.

North of Wetmore a flash flood hit an SH 67 crossing on July 31, 2012, causing an old timber bridge to sag downward 5 feet. A detour was built and opened August 24 to move traffic around the site. The bridge was rebuilt in 2013.

68

Location: West Metro Denver
W End: Up to 1939: Jct US 40 southwest of Lookout Mountain; 1939 to 1953: Jct SH 103 at Echo Lake
E End: Jct US 40 at Golden Rd. and Colfax Ave.
Places: Echo Lake, Squaw Pass, Bergen Park, Lookout Mountain, Golden

History:
Appears to be an original 1920s state highway. Started at US 40, and headed northeast via Lookout Mountain Road to Golden, then southeast via Golden Road to Colfax. In 1939 it was extended westward from Bergen Park over Squaw Pass via what had been SH 74 (current SH 103) ending at SH 103 at Echo Lake. Decommissioned in its entirety by 1954, with some pieces of it becoming SH 103 and SH 74.

68

Location: North Front Range
Length*: 4.46mi
W End: Jct US 287 at Harmony Rd. and College Ave. in Fort Collins
E End: Jct I-25 Exit 265 west of Timnath

History:
Became a state highway about 1968, using Harmony Road across the the south side of Fort Collins between US 287 and I-25. Expressway from US 287 to just west of I-25 by 1971. Eventually became one of Fort Collins' main gateways and a major commercial corridor. The expressway was extended through the I-25 interchange, by widening the bridge and adding turn lanes, in 2000. CDOT turned back all of SH 68 to Fort Collins in mid-2005.

Photo Gallery:

  • SH 68/I-25 Old Bridge. Eastbound SH 68 just west of I-25, where it used to neck down to go onto the two-lane overpass. You can't see it very well, but note the narrow bridge and no turn lanes. This is before reconstruction that widened the bridge. (July 1998)

69

Location: South Front Range > Southeastern Mountains
Length*: 82.66mi
SE End: Jct BL I-25 north of Walsenburg
NW End: Jct US 50 at Texas Creek

Counties: Huerfano, Custer, Fremont
Places: Walsenburg, Gardner, Westcliffe, Texas Creek

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: BL I-25 north of Walsenburg (begin SH 69 in Huerfano County)
  • 42.16: Enter Custer County
  • 58.70: SH 96, Westcliffe
  • 71.72: Enter Fremont County
  • 82.66: US 50, Texas Creek (end SH 69)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 970 at BL 25
  • 640 northwest of CR 632-543
  • 490 northwest of CR 550
  • 560 northwest of CR 310
  • 3800 northwest of SH 96, Westcliffe
  • 1400 north of CR 215-175
  • 460 at US 50

Guide:
SH 69 starts at BL 25 just south of the Exit 52 interchange and heads northwest along the base of the foothills then turns west along the Huerfano River, toward Gardner. It then heads northwest up Muddy Creek, and once crossing over Promontory Divide enters the Wet Mountain Valley. In the valley the jagged Sangre de Christo Mountains dominate the horizon to the west.

SH 69 then comes north into Westcliffe on 6th St, turns left at SH 96/Main St and right at 3rd St to go north out of town. It continues northwest through the Wet Mountain Valley, but eventually picks up Texas Creek and follows that north into the Arkansas River canyon and ends at US 50. The "town" of Texas Creek is just a whitewater raft company's building.

Photo Gallery:

  • Greenhorn Mountain. View on northbound SH 69 at about Milepost 3, with Greenhorn Mountain dominating the skyline. Photo by David Herrera. (December 2010)
  • Milepost 35, Humboldt Peak. Another view on northbound SH 69, about 11 miles northwest of Gardner. Here the Sangre de Christo's Humboldt Peak is prominent. Photo by David Herrera. (December 2010)
  • SH 96 Intersection View 1 and View 2. Two views on northbound SH 69 approaching the SH 96 intersection in Westcliffe. It's a palindrome! (May 2013)
  • Downtown Westcliffe Right Turn. Signs on northbound SH 69 where it turns north from Main to 3rd Street in Westcliffe. (May 2013)
  • North of Westcliffe. The scenery on northbound SH 69 in the Wet Mountain Valley 5 miles north of Westcliffe. (May 2013)
  • South of US 50. On northbound SH 69 about 4 miles south of US 50, with the topography chaning to rocky canyons. (May 2013)
  • US 50 Junction. On SH 69 as it drops down into the Arkansas River canyon at US 50. (May 2013)

History:
SH 69 is an original 1920s state highway, just as it is now, but with the south end at US 85-87. By 1939 a spur had been added which went southwest from US 85-87 at Walsenburg. By 1949 it was paved from US 85-87 to Del Carbon. By 1954 a portion in the middle had been turned back, resulting in a gap that went from 13mi northwest of Gardner to Westcliffe, and the spur southwest of Walsenburg was gone. By 1958 the only portion not paved was from Gardner northwest to the start of the gap. The gap was then closed in 1977, and that segment was paved in the mid 1980s. While SH 69 had the gap in it, SH 69 and SH 96 ended at each other in Westcliffe.

70

Location: Metro Denver

History:
SH 70 is an original 1920s state highway. It appears it at first went from Morrison east via Hampden Ave to Fort Logan, then east to Santa Fe Drive. The road network it used east of Morrison does not exist anymore due to Bear Creek Reservoir.

By 1939 the Denver insert on CDH maps is clearer about SH 70's routing. It started at US 285/SH 8 east of Morrison, east generally along Hampden Ave, but used Kenyon Ave past Fort Morgan to Lowell, then Hampden Ave again east to Yosemite St. East of that SH 70 crossed Kenwood Dam across Cherry Creek, then north via Havana St from Parker Rd to US 6 (current SH 2), and north via Sable Blvd to Brighton.

By 1949 the section from Smith Road north to US 6 was turned back (part of that making way for the Rocky Mountain Arsenal). By 1950 Kenwood Dam was gone, replaced by the modern Cherry Creek Dam, so SH 70's exact routing in southeast metro is unknown.

By 1954, SH 70 started at Hampden/Sheridan, went east to Yosemite, then started again at Parker/Havana and went north to Colfax, and had a third section along Sable between US 6 and Brighton. By 1957 SH 70 began to resemble the urban expressway of today. The downtown Englewood south bypass along Jefferson Avenue was in place, as was the sweeping curve making SH 70 continuous from Hampden onto Havana.

By 1963 the Hampden interchanges were in at Sheridan, Federal and Santa Fe. During the rest of the 1960s the freeway was extended westward from Sheridan. It reached Estes Street by 1965, and Kipling by 1967. US 285 was moved off of Morrison Road and onto the Hampden/Havana freeway/expressway about 1969 taking over that part of SH 70. The section of SH 70 south of Brighton along Sable was renumbered to SH 51 in the purge of 1968.

I-70

Location: Western Slope > Central Mountains > Metro Denver > Eastern Plains
Length*: 449.59mi
W End: Utah border west of Grand Junction
E End: Kansas border east of Burlington (link to Richie Kennedy's site)
Nationally: W End: Jct I-15 at Fort Cove, Utah; E End: Baltimore, Maryland (2175mi)

Counties: Mesa, Garfield, Eagle, Summit, Clear Creek, Jefferson, Denver, Adams, Arapahoe, Elbert, Lincoln, Kit Carson
Places: Fruita, Grand Junction, DeBeque Canyon, DeBeque, Parachute, Rifle, Silt, New Castle, Glenwood Springs, Glenwood Canyon, Gypsum, Eagle, Edwards, Avon, Vail, Vail Pass, Frisco, Silverthorne, Dillon, Eisenhower Tunnel, Silver Plume, Georgetown, Idaho Springs, Mount Vernon Canyon, Wheat Ridge, Denver, Aurora, Byers, Deer Trail, Limon, Genoa, Arriba, Flagler, Seibert, Vona, Bethune, Burlington

See the separate page for I-70 for the remainder of the info. Looking just for exit lists?

Related Sites:

Location: Slater (Moffat County)
Length: 0.90mi in Colorado

Notes:
Wyoming 70, on its journey from Baggs east through Carbon County to Encampment, for 0.90 mile dips south across the state line into Colorado (mileposts 15.34 to 16.24). This occurs at Slater, Colorado, a locale at the junction of Wyoming 70 and Moffat CR 1, near the confluence of Slater Creek and the Little Snake River. This section of highway, while in Colorado, is maintained by the Wyoming DOT.

The USGS topo map at right shows the area. You can see the border running east-west, the highway crossing into Colorado, and the locale of Slater, which appears to consist of two buildings and a mine shaft.

See also:

71

Location: Arkansas Valley > Eastern Plains
Length*: 232.90mi
S End: Jct US 350 southwest of La Junta
N End: Nebraska border south of Kimball, connecting with NE 71 (Link to Chris Geelhart's site)
Nationally: SH 71 is part of Multi-State 71. N End: Hot Springs, South Dakota

Counties: Otero, Crowley, Lincoln, Washington, Morgan, Weld
Places: Hawley, Rocky Ford, Ordway, Punkin Center, Limon, Last Chance, Brush, Snyder, Stoneham

NHS:

  • While concurrent with US 50 through Rocky Ford
  • US 24-40-287 at Limon north to Nebraska (Heartland Expressway corridor)
Scenic & Historic Byways: Pawnee Pioneer Trails (while concurrent with SH 14)

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: US 350 (begin SH 71 in Otero County)
  • 9.03: West jct SH 10, Hawley
  • 9.59: East jct SH 10
  • 14.53: East jct US 50/SH 266, Rocky Ford
  • 16.15: West jct US 50 northwest of Rocky Ford
  • 19.53: Enter Crowley County
  • 26.64: South jct SH 96, Ordway
  • 26.88: North jct SH 96/3rd St.
  • 48.65: Enter Lincoln County
  • 72.60: SH 94, Punkin Center
  • 101.06: West jct US 24-40-287/Main St., Limon
  • 101.97: East jct US 24-40-287
  • 125.85: Enter Washington County
  • 138.01: US 36, Last Chance
  • 156.08: Enter Morgan County
  • 174.35: East jct US 34, Brush
  • 175.48: West jct US 34/Edison St., Brush
  • 176.46: I-76 Exit 90 interchange north of Brush
  • 195.61: Enter Weld County
  • 201.63: East jct SH 14
  • 205.52: West jct SH 14, Stoneham
  • 232.90: Nebraska border (end SH 71)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 250 at US 350
  • 230 south of SH 10, Hawley
  • 470 north of SH 10
  • 2700 south of US 50, Rocky Ford
  • 1600 north of US 50
  • 1400 north of CR 8
  • 1800 on SH 71-96, Ordway
  • 880 north of CR 18
  • 830 north of CR BB
  • 530 north of SH 94, Punkin Center
  • 790 north of CR 2Z
  • 2600 south of US 24-40-287, Limon
  • 2000 north of US 24-40-287
  • 980 north of CR 3J
  • 770 south of US 36, Last Chance
  • 1100 north of US 36
  • 980 north of CR 29
  • 2300 south of US 34, Brush
  • 6100 south of I-76, Brush
  • 1000 north of CR W
  • 380 south of SH 14
  • 1500 on SH 14-71
  • 580 north of SH 14
  • 630 at Nebraska border

Guide:
This is a looonnnggg highway. It starts at US 350 southwest of La Junta, and just north of the intersection is the Sierra Vista Overlook, a natural hill providing a view of a large swath of Comanche National Grassland. SH 71 goes due north to Hawley where there is a short jog to the east along SH 10. North of Hawley SH 71 enters Rocky Ford, coming into town and meeting US 50/SH 266 at 12th St. and Elm Avenue. SH 71 overlaps on US 50 west for 2mi then turns north and crosses over the Arkansas River and past the east side of Ordway.

North of Ordway SH 71 is in sparse country for a long way, cruising over the grassland and down and up across the occassional creek valley. For the 75mi from Ordway to Limon, the only settlement passed through is Punkin Center at SH 94, which is comprised of only a few buildings. There are no services between Ordway and Limon.

In Limon, SH 71 hits US 24-40-287/BL 70 at K Ave. and Main St. From there, it goes east on Main St. through downtown multiplexed with those routes to 1st Ave., where it heads north. SH 71 does not have an interchange with I-70, instead just an overpass. Then it's north toward Last Chance at US 36, through Woodrow, and finally intersecting US 34 east of downtown Brush. Like the stretch further south, there are no services between Limon and Brush.

SH 71 follows US 34 west into Brush and at Colorado Ave. downton SH 71 turns north, goes through I-76 Exit 90, through Snyder, and north to SH 14 near Stoneham. It goes west on SH 14 for 4mi, then heads north for 27mi to the Nebraska border.

Photo Gallery:

  • Approaching SH 10. On northbound SH 71 as it approaches the western SH 10 junction just west of Hawley. (May 2013)
  • US 50, Rocky Ford. Northbound SH 71 on 12th Street at it approaches the US 50-SH 266 junction. US 50 uses two one-way streets so there are two intersections. (May 2013)
  • Arkansas River Bridge. Northbound on SH 71 as it crosses over the Arkansas River between Rocky Ford and Ordway. (May 2013)
  • North of Ordway. The view on northbound SH 71 about 6 miles north of Ordway. The landscape rapidly turns arid as the irrigated Arkansas Valley is left behind. (May 2013)
  • SH 94 Destinations. Large destination sign on northbound SH 71 at the SH 94 intersection. (May 2013)
  • Punkin Center Sign. How can you not take a picture of it? Southbound approaching SH 94. (February 2008)
  • South Rush Creek Bridge Construction, Approach and Bridge. In early 2008 CDOT was replacing the SH 71 bridge over South Rush Creek north of Punkin Center. A temporary bypass took traffic around the west side of the construction zone. (February 2008)
  • Limon Marker Assembly. Northbound SH 71 where it hits Main Street in Limon. There are already a lot of signs piled onto this marker assembly, and they didn't even include BL 70. (February 2008)
  • SH 71 at US 34. Marker assembly on NB SH 71 at US 34 east of downtown Brush. Note it says you can go either way to get to I-76 (which is true). (April 2004)
  • Nebraska Border. Shot north on SH 71 at the Nebraska border. Interestingly, CDOT has put in an "end 71" sign here, although the highway continues in Nebraska as NE 71. Photo by Bo Baize. (November 2009)

History:
SH 71 is an original 1920s highway. And followed its current route from US 350 north to Brush. By 1939 a spur was added which went north from Brush. By 1954 there was no spur north of Brush, and a portion had been turned back creating a gap from 11mi north of Limon to Last Chance. The gap was closed by 1955. By 1958 the only portion not paved was from north of Ordway to south of Limon. The section from Brush north to SH 14 to Nebraska was added about 1964, and SH 71 was completely paved by 1965.

In Limon, SH 71 originally came north to US 24-40-287 at I Avenue, but was realigned west to K Avenue about 1999.

In Brush, the Exit 90 interchange at I-76 was originally a cloverleaf interchange when it was built in 1959. In spring 2013 as part of an I-76 reconstruction project it was changed to a diamond interchange.



72

Location: Northwest Metro Denver > North Mountains
Length*: 54.06mi
SE End: Ward Rd/44th Ave at I-70 Exit 266 in Wheat Ridge
NW End: Jct SH 7 north of Raymond

Counties: Jefferson, Gilpin, Boulder
Places: Wheat Ridge, Arvada, Wondervu, Pinecliffe, Nederland, Ward, Raymond

Roadway Names: Section from SH 119 to SH 7 is part of the Peak to Peak Highway.

Scenic & Historic Byways: Peak to Peak Highway (SH 119 to SH 7)

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: 44th Ave (begin SH 72 in Jefferson County)
  • 10.65: SH 93 west of Arvada
  • 18.89: Enter Boulder County
  • 21.49: Enter Gilpin County
  • 24.68: Enter Boulder County
  • 26.60: Enter Gilpin County
  • 27.33: Enter Boulder County
  • 29.37: South jct SH 119 south of Nederland
  • 32.37: North jct SH 119, Nederland
  • 54.06: SH 7 (end SH 72)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 35,600 at I-70, Wheat Ridge
  • 20,700 west of Ward Rd.
  • 15,700 north of 64th Ave.
  • 4100 west of Indiana St.
  • 5000 west of SH 93
  • 1400 west of Camp Eden Rd.
  • 880 east of SH 119
  • 8300 at Boulder St on SH 119-72, Nederland
  • 3200 north of SH 119
  • 1100 north of Ward
  • 820 at SH 7

Guide:
A real two-faced highway. It starts off in an urban area between Denver and Golden at I-70, heads north through Arvada on Ward Road, west on 64th Ave., north on Indiana St., then west on its own. At SH 93, it goes past what's left of the Rocky Flats Plant, a DOE place that produced really nasty pollution in the process of making parts for nuclear weapons. It then heads west up into Coal Creek Canyon to Wondervu. It then takes a slow, torturous course over ridges to drop down into the canyon of Boulder Creek and passes through Pinecliffe. Eventually SH 72 meets SH 119 south of Nederland, then the two of them head north to town. SH 119-72 split in Nederland and SH 72 heads north through Ward, ending at SH 7 near Raymond.

Photo Gallery:

  • Climbing Up Black Gulch. Eastbound SH 72 about a mile east of Pinecliffe as it climbs up the side of Black Gulch. March 2005
  • Pinecliffe Rail Crossing. In this picture looking east you can see where SH 72 crosses the UPRR Moffat Tunnel line, in the town of Pinecliffe. March 2005
  • SH 72/119 Roundabout Sign. Sign for the roundabout at the SH 72/119 intersection in Nederland, here seen on the approach to it on southbound SH 72. June 2001

History:
SH 72 is an original 1920s state highway, which probably started at Federal Blvd. and 46th Ave in Denver (SH 1/US 285) then went northwest via some indeterminate streets, out of the metro, up Coal Creek Canyon, ending at SH 119 at Nederland. Section from Nederland to Raymond originally designated SH 160. By 1936 the eastern end had been trimmed back to Sheridan Blvd., ending at SH 58. In 1939 a new section in the east metro was added, which went along Smith Road from Colorado Blvd. east to Colfax Ave. (US 40) west of Watkins.

By 1946 the section from SH 93 into Denver was paved, and link for SH 72 was added in the central metro, basically along 46th Ave., between the two previously disjointed sections. The original Mousetrap Interchange on the Valley Highway was completed in 1950 as the interchange with 46th Ave./SH 72. See I-25 or SH 185 for more on the Valley Highway. By 1954, additional paving had been done from SH 93 up to the Boulder/Jefferson County line, and by 1958 was paved in its entirety up to Nederland.

In the late '50s state maps, the Denver insert finally got good enough that it can be seen with some clarity what streets SH 72 was using. From Coal Creek Canyon it came south on Indiana, east on 64th and Ralston, south on Marshall, east on 46th to Federal, then used a combination of 48th and 46th to Colorado, then Smith Road southeast to Colfax.

During the 1960s, the alignment of SH 72 along 46th and 48th Avenues in Denver began transforming into the freeway alignment for I-70. In 1961, SH 72 continued east on the 46th Avenue alignment east to Havana St, then south to Smith Road. On September 12, 1964, the elevated 46th Avenue freeway opened from I-25 east to Colorado Blvd. 46th Ave. was one of the "worst traffic bottlenecks in Denver", and building the elevated freeway was thought to be the solution.

In 1965 SH 72 was with the I-70 freeway (including through the new Stapleton tunnel) east to Peoria St, where the freeway ended and SH 72 went south to Smith Road. 1965 also saw the addition of a spur SH 72 connection along Tower Road between Smith Road and Colfax Ave. The spur would become SH 32 in 1968.

By 1966 more I-70 freeway had been completed, so SH 72 was freeway with I-70 from Sheridan Blvd east all the way to Colfax Ave. At that point it was a defacto carrier route for I-70. By 1967 the autonomous sections off of I-70 only existed west of Wadsworth Blvd and the spur along Tower Road, which had been extended north to I-70.

In the purge of 1968 four changes occurred to SH 72:

  • SH 160 from Nederland to SH 7 was renumbered as an extension of SH 72 to avoid duplication with US 160.
  • SH 72 from Ward Rd to Wadsworth was rerouted off of Ralston Rd and instead turned south on Ward to I-70.
  • The carrier route portion along I-70 from Wadsworth to east Colfax was eliminated.
  • The spur connection along Tower was renumbered to SH 32.

73

Location: West Metro Denver
S End: Jct US 285 at Conifer
N End: Jct SH 74 at Evergreen

History:
SH 73 was a link from SH 74 at Evergreen south to US 285 at Conifer. It was an original 1920s state highway. By 1954 it was paved from Evergreen halfway south to Conifer, and all the way to Conifer by 1958. Turned back in 1965. Current Jefferson CR 73. Street name signs along it still say "HWY 73". Carries a lot of traffic in the bedroom community-boondocks southwest of Denver with the SH 74/CR 73 intersection in Evergreen congested at all hours of the day.

74

Location: West Metro Denver
Length*: 18.11mi
W End: Jct I-70 Exit 252 at El Rancho
E End: Jct SH 8 in Morrison

Counties: Jefferson
Places: El Rancho, Bergen Park, Evergreen, Idledale, Morrison

Roadway Names:

  • Evergreen Parkway from I-70 to Evergreen
  • Bear Creek Road from Evergreen to Morrison
Scenic & Historic Byways: Lariat Loop America's Byways

Expressway:

  • Four-lane divided from I-70 south to south of Bergen Park
  • Five-lane undivided from south of Bergen Park to the west side of Evergreen

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: I-70 Exit 252 interchange (begin SH 74 in Jefferson County)
  • 0.23: US 40, El Rancho
  • 18.11: SH 8, Morrison (end SH 74)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 20,800 at I-70, El Rancho
  • 24,000 south of Bergen Pkwy., Bergen Park
  • 5800 east of CR 73, Evergreen
  • 3600 east of Myers Gulch Rd.
  • 3200 east of Grapevine Road, Idledale
  • 4300 at SH 8, Morrison

Guide:
Serves as a major feeder for people who live in the foothills west of Denver to get to I-70. From I-70 it heads south through El Rancho, Hidden Valley, Bergen Park, Wah Keeney Park, and Hiwan Hills to Evergreen. There, it turns east and follows Bear Creek through Kittredge and Idledale to Morrison. There are numerous signal lights from I-70 to Evergreen.

Photo Gallery:

  • SH 74/US 40 El Rancho. Looking south along SH 74 at El Rancho. (May 1999)
  • SH 74 Near Bergen Parkway. The scenery looking north along SH 74 at the south Bergen Parkway intersection, as SH 74 swerves around the hillside off in the distance. (May 1999)
  • Downtown Evergreen. A shot looking east down SH 74 through "downtown" Evergreen, from the SH 74/CR 73 intersection. It's typical to not be able to find a parking spot anywhere. (August 2004)

History:
SH 74 is an original 1920s state highway. Started at SH 103 at Echo Lake, and went east over Squaw Pass to Bergen Park, then to Evergreen and Morrison. Also at some indeterminate time (possibly 1939) it was extened east from Morrison along Hogback Road and Alameda Avenue into Denver, ending at SH 8 at Morrison Road.

By 1940 the west end had been shifted to SH 68 at Bergen Park, which had been extended west along SH 74's route to Echo Lake. Entirely paved by 1949.

By 1954 the west end was changed so that SH 74 went from Evergreen west to Brookvale (along what had previously been SH 98), ending as a spur there, and the east end was trimmed back to Morrison. By 1962 the west end was changed again and shifted north to El Rancho. Undivided expressway from Bergen Park to Evergreen completed by 1972. Divided expressway from El Rancho to Bergen Park constructed in 1996.



75

Location: South Metro Denver
Length*: 3.24mi
N End: Platte Canyon Road & Bowles Avenue in Littleton
S End: Jct SH 470 at Platte Canyon Road southwest of Littleton

Counties: Arapahoe, Jefferson
Places: Littleton, Columbine Valley

Roadway Names: Platte Canyon Road

Milepost Guide:

  • 5.28: Platte Canyon/Bowles Ave, Littleton (begin SH 75 in Arapahoe County)
  • 7.73: Enter Jefferson County
  • 8.52: SH 470 (end SH 75)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 18,200 south of Bowles Ave.
  • 13,000 south of Coal Mine Ave.
  • 6700 at SH 470

Notes: Odd mileposting is a leftover from its 1970s historic starting point in downtown Englewood.

Guide:
The southern end of SH 75 at SH 470 is not a full interchange. Instead, you can only go from westbound 470 to 75, and from 75 to WB 470. SH 75 then heads north on Platte Canyon Rd. through heavily populated unincorporated Jefferson and Arapahoe Counties, then through Columbine Valley. On the west side of Littleton, it ends at the intersection of Platte Canyon Rd and Bowles Ave.

History:
SH 75 is an original 1920s state highway, going along Federal Blvd. from SH 70 (Hampden Ave.) north to US 40-87 (Colfax Ave.).

By 1939, SH 75 went from US 285 at Bailey southeast then northeast to SH 126 at Pine, from South Platte northeast to Waterton (a.k.a. Kassler), northeast to SH 124 (Deer Creek Road), then north to Fort Logan and finally north on Federal, ending at 38th Ave. One segment between Buffalo Creek and South Platte is shown as projected/impassable.

By 1954, SH 75 went only from Hampden/Federal north to Colfax, and in 1955 a section was added that went from Bowles/Santa Fe southwest along Platte Canyon Rd. for 3mi. The section along Platte Canyon was extended to 10mi long by 1956. The expressway from Deer Creek Rd. south to the then Martin-Marietta aerospace plant opened in 1960. By 1966 the section that had its south end at Hampden/Federal was extended south to Belleview Ave. and east to Santa Fe.

By 1971 Federal was renumbered as part of SH 88 and SH 75 took over part of SH 87's route, so SH 75 went from Kassler north via Platte Canyon Rd., Littleton Blvd., and Broadway to Hampden Avenue (US 285), for a total of *14.36mi. The expressway remained from SH 121 south to Kassler. The route included a split along two one-way streets, Main Street and Alamo Avenue, in downtown Littleton.

SH 75 remained that way until 1991, when the construction of SH 470 chopped SH 75 in half between Wadsworth Blvd. and Platte Canyon Rd. What had previously been SH 75 from Kassler to SH 470 was redesignated as an extension of SH 121.

Sometime in the late 1990s two sections of SH 75 were turned back. One was the section through downtown Littleton from Santa Fe Drive east to Broadway, and the other the entire Englewood section from the Littleton border north to Hampden Ave. That left a short dangling section in east Littleton, along Broadway from Littleton Blvd *0.47mi north to Rafferty Gardens Ave. Why that piece, a state highway that didn't touch any other, was left in place beats me.

The southern section of SH 75 continued to go from SH 470 northeast and east on Bowles to end at US 85 until summer 2010 when the section along Bowles was turned back. This left SH 75's south section with a dangling end at Platte Canyon and Bowles.

CDOT turned back the disjointed northern section along Broadway to Littleton in fall 2011.

76

Location: Southeast Mountains > South Front Range
SW End: 1920s-1953: Jct SH 96 southwest of Wetmore; 1954-1956: Beulah; 1957-1975: Jct SH 165 southwest of Beulah
NE End: 1920s-1958: Jct US 85-87 at Northern Ave. and Lake Ave. in south Pueblo; 1959-1965: Jct SH 96 at Prairie Ave/Thatcher Ave in Pueblo; 1966-1975: Jct SH 45 in southwest Pueblo

History:
SH 76 is the original 1920s number for current SH 78. It originally also was the designation for SH 165 from SH 78 northwest to SH 96. So, from the 1920s SH 76 went from SH 96 southeast then northeast, via Beulah, to Pueblo, ending at US 85-87 in town. By 1936 it was paved from Beulah into Pueblo. The spur connection to Beulah (see SH 78 below) was added in 1939 and originally had a separate designation, SH 273.

By 1952, SH 76 was turned back between SH 273 and SH 165, so SH 273 and SH 76 ended at each other. By 1954 the SH 273 designation was dropped and SH 76 was extended into Beulah, ending there. By 1956 it had been extended back down to SH 165, and Spur SH 76 into Beulah was added. In 1959 US 85-87 was moved onto what would become I-25 through Pueblo, so the east end of SH 76 was rerouted so it went north on Prairie Ave, ending at SH 96 at Thatcher Ave. By 1966 SH 45 had started to be built and SH 76's east end was trimmed back to Pueblo Blvd.

The switch from SH 76 to SH 78 occurred in 1975 in order to avoid duplication when I-80S was switched to I-76. The January 1, 1976 route log specifically mentions the number switch.

I-76

Location: North Metro Denver > North Eastern Plains
Length*: 184.14mi
SW End: Jct I-70 in Arvada (Exit 269)
NE End: Nebraska border northeast of Julesburg (link to Chris Geelhart's site)
Nationally: Continues northeast in Nebraska for less than two miles to end at I-80 south of Big Springs (185mi)

Counties: Jefferson, Adams, Weld, Morgan, Washington, Logan, Sedgwick
Places:
Arvada, Wheat Ridge, Commerce City, Brighton, Hudson, Keenesburg, Wiggins, Fort Morgan, Brush, Sterling, Julesburg

For the remainder of the information see the separate I-76 page.

Related Site: I-76 (Western) @ Interstate Guide

77

Location: East Mountains
NW End: Jct US 285 at Jefferson
SE End: Jct US 24 at Lake George
Places: Jefferson, Tarryall Reservoir, Tarryall, Lake George

History:
SH 77 is an original 1920s state highway. By 1954 a section of it had been turned back, creating a gap from 4mi northwest of Lake George to Tarryall Reservoir. Turned back entirely by 1955.

78

Location: Central Mountains
W End: 1920s to 1939: Jct US 24-6 at Red Cliff; 1940 to 1968: Jct US 24 north of Minturn at Dowds Junction
E End: Jct SH 91 at Wheeler Junction/Copper Mountain
Places: Shrine Pass and later Vail Pass

<>History:
SH 78 started out as an orginal 1920s state highway for Shrine Pass Road, going from US 6-24 at Red Cliff east over the pass and down to SH 91/US 6 at Wheeler Junction (today's Copper Mountain). No route existed over Vail Pass, so in its first routing westward US 6 utilized today's SH 91 and US 24 via Leadville and Minturn to get from Frisco to Avon. However, it appears in 1939 a road started being worked east from Dowds Junction into the Vail Valley. It at first was a spur, SH 293.

In 1940 a reshuffling happened in the area. SH 78 was moved from Shrine Pass to Vail Pass, so went from Dowds Junction east over Vail Pass and ending at Wheeler Junction. US 6 was moved from its Leadville routing to along SH 78 over Vail Pass. SH 293 was moved to Shrine Pass Road.

From 1940 onward SH 78 was the defacto carrier route for US 6, and so was decommissioned along with the other carrier routes in the purge of 1968. The town of Vail doesn't appear on maps until 1964.

78

Location: Southeast Mountains > South Front Range
Length*: 33.27mi
SW End: Jct SH 165 southwest of Beulah
NE End: Jct SH 45 in west Pueblo

Counties: Custer, Pueblo
Places: Beulah, Pueblo

Spur Connection: To Beulah

Notes: Nine miles of SH 78 from SH 165 northeastward is still gravel.

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: SH 165 (begin SH 78 in Custer County)
  • 2.40: Enter Pueblo County
  • 9.10: CR 205/Begin Pavement
  • 12.71: Spur SH 78 east of Beulah
  • 33.27: SH 45, Pueblo (end SH 78)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 340 at SH 165
  • 980 northeast of Spur 78
  • 1400 northeast of CR 221
  • 9000 east of La Vista Rd., Pueblo
  • 17,400 at SH 45

Guide:
From SH 165, SH 78 goes northeast, weaving around as it goes through the Wet Mountains. At Pueblo Mountain Park, SH 78 switches from gravel to paved and becomes known as Pine Drive as it passes houses on the outskirts of Beulah. After the intersection with Spur 78, SH 78 climbs up and out of the St. Charles River valley and maintains a fairly straight alignment northeast across open country to Pueblo. SH 78 ends at its intersection with SH 45 (Pueblo Blvd) on the southwest side of town.

Trucks longer than 40 feet are discouraged from traveling on the gravel portion of SH 78 due to tight switchbacks.

Photo Gallery:

  • Gravel Road Up the Wet Mountains. A shot looking westbound on SH 78 at the first switchback after the pavement end. (May 2009)
  • Gravel Road Next 9 Miles. At the end of the pavement west of Beulah. (May 2009)
  • Pine Drive, Beulah Outskirts. Typical scene on westbound SH 78 west of the Spur 78 intersection. (May 2009)
  • Truckers Better Think Twice. Warning sign on westbound SH 78 after the Spur 78 intersection, telling truckers they might not be able to make it around the switchbacks. (May 2009)
  • Spur 78 Approach Sign 1 and Sign 2. The two signs on westbound SH 78 approaching the Beulah spur. Note the spur route is actually marked with a business banner even though CDOT defines it as a spur route. (May 2009)
  • North Saint Charles River Bridge. Westbound on SH 78 coming down the hill to the bridge over the North Saint Charles River east of Beulah. (May 2009)
  • Milepost 29. The scenery on westbound SH 78 at Milepost 29, a few miles outside Pueblo. (May 2009)

History:
Routing is an original 1920s highway, however it used to be SH 76. Changed to avoid a conflict when I-80S became I-76 in 1975. See SH 76 above.



79

Location: North Eastern Plains
Length*: 23.89mi
S End: I-70 Exit 304 south frontage road south of Bennett
N End: Jct SH 52 at Prospect Valley

Counties: Adams, Weld
Places: Bennett, Prospect Valley

Milepost Guide:

  • 0.00: I-70 south frontage road (begin SH 79 in Adams County)
  • 0.16: I-70 Exit 304 interchange
  • 1.24: West jct SH 36, Bennett
  • 1.58: East jct SH 36, Bennett
  • 18.93: Enter Weld County
  • 23.89: SH 52, Prospect Valley (end SH 79)

Annual Average Daily Traffic (2008):

  • 4300 at I-70
  • 2600 north of SH 36, Bennett
  • 1800 north of 88th Ave
  • 1200 at SH 52

Photo Gallery:

  • Typical SH 79. Nortbound on SH 79 in Adams County. The power poles stretch all the way to the horizon in this pancake-flat area. (February 2003)
  • Flash Flood Area. Ominous sign on northbound SH 79 in Adams County. Not much in the way of streams out here, so I guess the water just kind of pools around, prompting the need for this sign. (February 2003)
  • End SH 79. Northbound sign on the approach to SH 52 in Prospect Valley. (February 2003)
  • SH 52 & I-76, Either Way. Sign at the intersection of SH 79 and SH 52. (February 2003)

History:
SH 79 is an original 1920s state highway, going from Bennett to Prospect Valley. By 1954 a spur had been added which went from Bennett south to the Arapahoe/Elbert County line, but that was eliminated by 1955. Was entirely paved by 1963. Extended south from Bennett to I-70 in 1963.

Suggestions:
E-mail from Joe Herter:

My Dad lives in Elbert County and according to county planners there are attempts to pave the Kiowa-Bennett Road and extend Colo 79 from Bennett to Kiowa. I have not confirmed this, but in my opinion this could offer a total bypass of Denver from I-76 to Colo Spgs!

Robert Halonen then chimed in also on that idea, saying he would like to see it. He would also like to see it extended from Prospect Valley up Weld CR 73 to I-76 at Roggen. If we expand further on this idea, SH 79 could go even further south from Kiowa via Elbert Road to US 24 northeast of Falcon. Of that whole entire route from Falcon to Roggen, the only section that is unpaved is from about 5mi north of Kiowa to the Arapahoe/Elbert line.

Continue:

Last updated 9 March 2014