Evans Echo Lake I-25 and Broadway I-25 and Santa Fe Rockfall Barrier Traffic and cones Glenwood Canyon Construction Ahead Regions Map trucks pedestrian car bus It’s the site of the final duel between David and Muezzin. This is a short video w… Evans Highway. 49 . Officials have expressed concerns about putting first responders in danger and the lack of social distancing at the summit. Continue under the cliff bands (25) to reach the saddle (26) between Mt. Evans. You don't want to try to touch that water! Danielson has taken part in the hill climb three times, and holds the three fastest ascents, ranging from the aforementioned record to a slightly more sedate time of 1:43:04, a whole 1:48 slower. Over three hours of climbing later, I was drunk from far too many thousands of feet above sea level. If you don't have much high-elevation, winter climbing experience, be careful in your planning and take a partner. Slowness prevails at the end of the nearly 30-mile effort that takes you from Idaho Springs to the summit of Evans. Let's get up to the official top of Mt. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. 7000' elevation gain. Gorka Izagirre Triumphant at Rain-Soaked Grande Trittico Lombardo, Seven Things We Like (The Ardèche Version), Our Favorite Parts of Riding with the MP1 Nfinity, Five of Our Favorite Things About the Cannondale Synapse NEO 1, Chapter 4: Discovering Beaujolais—Beaujeu to Cluny. For better or (bone density) worse, I feel more comfortable on a bike than I do walking, so the chance to take on a Fourteener sans hiking boots and the requisite multiple days of DOMS afterwards? The answer is pretty simple, if a bit unromantic: tourism. The History Dessert will be kept nice and chilly, as the average temperature atop Evans is a frosty 18F. TIP: One of our favorite day-trips with visitors who are not from Colorado, is to take them to Echo Lake, Mt. Owned by Denver Mountain Parks and is known for its excellent fishing (it is stocked yearly) and its picnic area at the north end of the lake. In 1930, Arthur Compton, fresh off of his 1929 Nobel Prize win in Physics, visited Mt. Mount Spaulding and Mount Evans via Summit Lake - Standard Route is a 5.3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Idaho Springs, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. I was nearly incoherent, mumbling to myself, worried about my curious tunnel vision, and wondering how the final few miles could be so insanely steep, but still, somewhere in the murkiness of a crazy high-altitude-induced delirium, I knew I was seeing something special. At the turn of the twentieth century, Colorado was at a crossroads; the fifty years of almost continual boom from gold, silver, and a myriad of other minerals had finally run its course. I turned my knee warmers into sort of leg warmers, pulled my arm warmers down to cover my hands a bit, then began the long, long journey to warmth. At this point, it’s a cliché to say that it’s a cliché to say epic. My personal favorite starts in Evergreen, ventures only slightly in the upward direction on the winding, wooded, and babbling brooked Bear Creek Road. A climb like Evans, which reaches such a special altitude, allows for a unique experience in terms of what you see. At the entry station you have to pay $3 for a three day pass (hiker, biker, or motorcyclist) and then you see the sign "Summit Lake 9, Mt Evans 14". I’ve been up a few of them, struggled up all of them, but riding my bike to that altitude is unquestionably my preferred mode of transit. From Denver, head west on Interstate 70 to Idaho Springs and then turn south onto State Highway 103, the start of the Mount Evans Scenic Byway. Driving to the 14,264-foot summit is a popular summer activity for families and tourists. . Heavenly. Evans: from Idaho Springs and Bergen Park. The latter has long been the highest paved road in North America (5th highest in the world) and is only open in the summer. Evans - West Ridge via Mt. In reality, once my wheels pass the 12,000 foot mark, it gets a lot less pleasant. Summit Lake is 9 miles from Echo Lake and is located at 12,840 feet in the shadow of the mountain’s spectacular upper cliffs. My bike is ready to go back, but a few more pictures are in order. It’s like nothing I’ve ever experienced. The gradient is barely 5%, but at 14,000 feet, it feels closer to three times that on pavement that begins to feel like it’s coated in elementary school rubber cement. It’s a fantastic climb with some sass; the dirt and steep grade make for an always entertaining ascent. You know the one, it’s where David’s scowling nemesis tries to take our hero off the road, but David holds on, attacks, and takes the win? Once at the top parking lot, there is a short, but rewarding hike to the summit at 14,264 ft. I agree, those things are nasty, but if you wait long enough, you can get up there post-storm and get a rare opportunity to explore the nether regions of close-to-space altitude with nary a car, the ability to enjoy peaceful pockets of completely undisturbed flora and fauna, the quiet after the cars and tourists have disappeared, and a sky like no other. Mount Evans doesn’t have any of that vintage, but it’s estimated that the small forest of bristlecone pines near Mount Goliath has some trees that are close to 1,700 years old. Spalding Route. Echo Lake to Summit Lake is a 12 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Georgetown, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. Warren and Mt. Colorado is blessed with 54 mountains that poke through the illustrious 14,000-foot (4,267-meter) mark. You can park near the lake (by the picnic area) or drive up to the Echo Lake Lodge and park in one of the parking lots near the entrance to the Mt. Mount Evans. Echo Lake Lodge: Gateway to Mt. Evans Summit - See 198 traveller reviews, 93 candid photos, and great deals for Idaho Springs, CO, at Tripadvisor. Idaho Springs is the easiest access point for those near the I-70 corridor. Summer . Descend via the same route. Evans summit at 14,200. I was young, weak, hardly acclimatized, and full of stupid. The others were waiting for us at Mount Evans State Park. It will literally challenge body, mind and spirit. While it’s highly discouraged by most, my favorite time to venture up Evans is late in the evening during the high summer months. The bristlecones are a notable addition to the ride and form a sort of time capsule just a couple miles up from Echo Lake. It’s essentially an all-day event that will require some careful planning in terms of nutrition, hydration and gear. It is generally open from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Everest. The highway to the top of Mount Evans … Glimmering to the west of Denver, the Rockies were always going to be the focal point of tourism in the state. The first time I rode up to the exposed parking lot of Mount Evans, I was a freshman in college and had just started riding bikes. From the Summit Lake parking area, walk north past an old rock building to locate the start of a trail that heads toward the north end of the lake - 1 and 2. My heart rate settled down somewhat after I scaled back my effort. Spalding Route. ROUTE: Bicycling Magazine put together a route + GPX file to climb Mt. The race organizer was working the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. ECHO LAKE TO SUMMIT LAKE. More importantly, it gains another 3,400 feet. Mount Evans: Echo Lake on Mt Evans - See 2,534 traveler reviews, 1,789 candid photos, and great deals for Denver, CO, at Tripadvisor. At 15.5 miles in, you’ll arrive at the intersection of the two main approaches from Echo Lake. It was built as a result of Pikes Peak Highwayand Denver’s competition for tourists. For a different view of the climb—plus a longer one with more vertical meters of climbing—you can toe the start line in Bergen Park and bag two extra passes along the way: Squaw and Juniper. Whether you start in Idaho Springs or Bergen Park, the first half is nice, but it’s just an appetizer for the main course and dessert that will follow. Drive south on Colorado 103 for 13.5 miles at Echo Lake. From Echo Lake to the summit it is 14.5 miles/3,622’’ gained at 4.5% average grade. The whole Front Range of Colorado, the distant eastern plains, South Park, the Continental Divide, the vast expanse of the Rockies—it’s all there. Bergen Park . On a bit larger scale, mountain goats comprise one of my favorite memories of Evans. There are two main routes to the top of Mt. At an elevation as high as Mount Evans, riding a bike takes on a completely different feel. Colorado Springs jumped first in the high Rockies tourism sweepstakes. From I-70 take Exit 240 and then Colorado Highway 103 to Echo Lake. That one instantly went into the treasure chest of I-won’t-ever-forget-this moments. The Mount Evans climb is popular because the scenery is spectacular and there are not many bike rides that climb to 14,000 feet. Allow 2 . From there, it’s all uphill, and it gets steeper and steeper until the road turns to dirt and the switchbacks begin. Mount Evans is a road to nowhere with nothing at the top. The route starts at 12,830-foot Summit Lake and gains only 2,000 feet of elevation up Evan’s West Ridge to the 14,264-foot summit. The first 13.5 miles are up CO Hwy 103 to the permit station at Echo Lake. If you’ve seen the iconic cycling film American Flyers, you’ve seen Echo Lake. The third time, a month later (I needed time to recover from that last ordeal), the sun shone, my body cooperated, and I finally had a chance to drink in the view. Evans’ higher elevation made it attractive, because of heavy winter snows it was accessible only during the summer, whereas Echo Lake was accessible year-round. It starts in Bergen Park, climbs Juniper and Squaw Passes before taking on Loveland Pass and finally, Vail Pass. The byway begins by Echo Lake, south of Idaho Springs, at around 10,600′. Evans: We avoid bringing friends who are not in good health. No matter how acclimated I get, a quick acceleration to catch up with friends following a hastily snapped picture leaves me gasping. The start is less than half a mile from the Idaho Springs exit. The ride breaks up into two halves. Almost a century on, it’s a playground for cyclists, hikers, and, well, cars. If you’re not into racing, but still love a huge day on the bike, the local cycling organization, Team Evergreen, puts on a huge event each year called the Triple Bypass. It would be a 10-mile trek to Summit Lake, and 14 miles the actual summit. These distraction points are extremely helpful, as the road is not of the curvaceous sort; you can see vast expanses of what’s to come far in front of you, so the little distractions help to keep one focused on the task at hand and not quaking at the thought of how much further there is to go. I digress! There are a couple other possibilities as well to reach the climb’s halfway point at the lake, but they include a fair bit of dirt. In Europe, and the rest of the world for the most part, the great high-altitude roads often have some kind of a purpose. Such were the joys of high-altitude exploration in my first year of riding bikes. Take Highway 5 to the top of Mount Evans. for motor vehicles, not bikes. This is the world from 14,127 feet, and I’m pedaling a bike—a road bike at that. The knotted, gnarled trunks of the beautiful trees show their vast age and also offer up a nice little distraction. At that time we were with some inexperienced hikers, and I wanted to give them an easy day. Note: the Mount Evans Highway (Colorado Highway 5, from Echo Lake to the summit) will not open to motorized vehicles for the 2020 season. Drive along the slopes of Mount Evans, a Colorado 14er standing at 14,264 ft. 5 switchbacks down from the summit, on a tight hairpin turn, is a small parking area near 13,900ft. Thankfully, in the summer, the temperature is usually somewhere in the 40-60F range, but it doesn’t take much for the weather to do a somersault and send the numbers toward frigid. Idaho Springs is the classic route, which is used by the annual Bob Cook Memorial Hill Climb, which often serves as the Colorado State Hill Climb Championship. It’s 27.4 miles from the Clear Creek Middle School just outside of Idaho Springs to the Mount Evans parking lot over 7,000 feet higher than you start. Pikes Peak Hwy is Colorado’s second highest road (not all paved), reaching 14,115 ft. The real mountain part starts at Echo Lake, 15 miles from the summit. View down to Echo Lake from four miles up Mt. The Cascade and Pikes Peak Toll Road Company took on the major task of building a road to the top of Pikes Peak. As we approached, they barely took note, so we were left to pick our way through the sedentary mass, until one curious goat took to enjoying the sweat on my leg. With the repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act in 1893, the mining and agricultural economy plunged the still fledgling state to the brink of disaster. Mount Evans is one of the top travel vacation spots in the USA featuring the highest paved road in the northern hemisphere and is located near Denver Colorado. Fees are charged per vehicle or per person for hikers and bikers. It then travels 14 miles to the top. I love bikes, I love to ride my bike, I love the very basic feeling of turning the pedals over, my hands on the bars, the view down to my rotating feet, even the feel of my helmet strap on my chin. Mount Evans Highway from Summit Lake to the top of the 14er will close to vehicle traffic on Sept. 5. There maybe occasional short 10% grades, but the average is just over 5% (4,000 divided by 15 times 5280 is .0505). Once there, enjoy the expansive views, but also look down and marvel at the view of the 11 switchbacks you just rode. June 2012 Bike to Work Fire from Highway Click it or Ticket Day and Night I-70 Twin Tunnels Colorado Scenic Byway USA Pro Cycle Challenge Fall Colors near Indian Peaks Mt. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Drive south on Colorado 103 for 13.5 miles to Echo Lake. The best time ever was set in 2004 by Tom Danielson in a mind-bogglingly fast one hour, forty-one minutes and twenty seconds. Follow Highway 103 south until it meets Echo Lake. Why the gigantic dead end? Echo Lake Lodge: Gateway to Mt. The finish is at Echo Lake. It’s a good day of riding at 120 miles and over 10,000 feet of climbing. The ride starts at the middle school next to the visitor's center at I-70 exit 240 in Idaho Springs at about 7000' elevation. The second time I rode up the highest paved road in North America, a couple weeks later, I couldn’t see my hand in front of my face in a snow/sleet/hail/rain storm and made it off the mountain almost hypothermic. 1995 Porsche 911 (993) driving from Echo Lake, 10,600 up to Mt. Pay the entrance fee and drive 9 miles up the Mt. The Best Part Evans Summit - See 196 traveler reviews, 93 candid photos, and great deals for Idaho Springs, CO, at Tripadvisor. . It is never really steep nor is the climb from Echo Lake to Mt Evans ever really steep. It is the only place between Idaho Springs on Highway 70 and Mount Evans where you can find an excellent meal, water & other hiking needs and Mount Evans collectibles and souvenirs. So there we were, approaching Summit Lake, with still a solid five or so miles of climbing to go, a perfect sunset gearing up to hit full blast, and mountain goats happily using me as a salt lick. It’s not an entirely pleasant feeling to pedal through the mud of extreme altitude. Download Agreement, Release, and Acknowledgement of Risk: Take Exit 240 at Idaho Springs on Interstate 70. I’m still not quite sure if I managed the feat or not, but that’s irrelevant. Take Highway 5 to the top of Mount Evans. Bikes Allowed: No: Horses Allowed: Yes: Related Trails: Beartrack Lakes; Hell's Hole Trail ; Missouri Lakes; Chicago Lakes - 9.8 Miles Round-Trip The Chicago Lakes are accessed from Echo Lake, 13.25 miles south of I-70 (Idaho Springs) in the Mt Evans Wilderness Area. On paper, it sounds amazing: a goliath of a mountain adorned with a snaking nearly 30-mile climb as far into the sky as I’ll probably ever get a chance to take my road bike. My original plan was to ride my bike to the top again. The Ranger Station parking lot is another (with serviced bathrooms no less,), though space is limited. It tops out about halfway up the climb from Bergen Park to Echo Lake (There’s still a lot of uphill to go from there, but you’ll be happy about the mild grades that Evans offers following the suffering on the dirt of Witter Gulch). Some park at Summit Lake … She set the record in 1998 with a 1:59:19. Notably, her time was only a little over two minutes slower than this year’s overall winner. Whether they were built during a great war, connect opposing valleys, or just to form an artery to a ski resort, there’s a reason behind them. Here is a better look at it, the Summit Lake again. With the opening overture taken care of, it’s time to get to the good part. Rockies Playground . Don’t even ask about that sprint to the parking lot at two and three quarter miles into the sky. That’s 28 miles—uphill—to over 14,000 feet. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. On the women’s side, the rider who puts the term evergreen to shame, Jeannie Longo holds the record on Evans. and the third? That goes on top of the starting point of almost 11,000 mind you. A few years back, my father and I did a late evening ride up Evans and found a small herd of mountain goats lounging in the middle of the road. In 1917, Denver’s then mayor, Robert Speer, managed to gain support to build the road to the top of Mount Evans. Fortunately, for once, cars and bikes coexist rather seamlessly in the upper elevations despite the narrow, barrier-less road and the yawning depths that beckon if you ever go a bit wayward at the wheel, er, handlebars. The race began in 1962 and has been run every year since, save for three missing editions, two of which were cancelled due to snow (in July!) 28 miles uphill (56 miles rt). First few miles after turning onto Mt. It’s hard largely because of the altitude. From Echo Lake to the Mount Evans parking lot, it’s another 14.65 miles. If this year’s Tour of Colorado takes hold and gains enough steam to come back in 2011, don’t be surprised if Mount Evans ends up on the stage list at some point soon. From Bergen Park: Take Squaw Pass Road/Highway 103 west and travel to Echo Lake. (WINTER) HOLD ON! If you run across some stereotypical Colorado summer afternoon weather (read: frightening), it’s unquestionably so. How to Get There. I’ve seen big views in a lot of places, but the world seems a little different at half the height of Mt. Evans. Many will say that it’s best to be off the mountain by noon because of the afternoon thunderstorms. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is best used from March until October. To reach the summit, turn right at the saddle/lake and use the Mt. Evans - West Ridge via Mt. The road is closed at Echo Lake, 14 miles from the summit. Evans Highway. Evans a couple of summers ago via an easy route (over mt Spalding from Summit Lake). The Mount Evans hill climb is a Colorado classic that every cyclist must check off the list. All 14er routes are more difficult and more dangerous in winter. More importantly, it gains another 3,400 feet. It doesn’t take long before you emerge above treeline and into the wide open expanses of ultra-high. From here, its just under 30-miles to the summit of Mt. You've now bagged one of Colorado's "14ers" in a unique fashion. Summit Lake is a perfect place to start a climb up Mount Evans. The 27 miles of climbing takes you through three life zones, which, simply put, means a LOT changes from Idaho Springs to the summit of Mount Evans. Mt. The road to the summit of Mount Evans is the highest paved auto road in North America, climbing to 14,260 feet above sea level. Evans road (Colorado 5). In other words, things get really high, really early on the second half. I summited the 14,264′ Mt. At that point, it’s just you, lichens, grass, extremely hearty wildflowers, pika, marmots, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, and a couple of lakes. That goes on top of the starting point of almost 11,000 mind you. After you’ve passed the bristlecones, all that’s left are a few unfortunate krummholz, and then the trees disappear entirely. The sky is that little bit bluer, the clouds that little bit closer, the expanse of view that much bigger. The race was renamed in 1981 to honor five-time winner and prodigal talent, Bob Cook, who died of cancer at the age of 23. The trees steadily change from the basic lodgepole pines, spruce, and aspen that characterize most of Colorado, to subalpine forest around treeline, highlighted by the oldest living organism on Earth—the bristlecone pine, which can reportedly reach ages of up to 5000 years old. Denver was not to be overshadowed by its southern neighbor. Parking at the summit is usually available on weekdays; you may wait up to 30 minutes for a parking spot on crowded weekends. It would make for an absolutely spectacular stage where only the best (acclimated) climbers need apply. The Colorado Department of Transportation typically closes this 5 … Echo Lake is a delightful mountain park with picnic benches, lake fishing, and views of snowcapped peaks. While Mt. Ride up Colorado 103 to just past Echo Lake and then turn right onto Route 5 to the summit. Thankfully, there’s no lack of distraction even when you reach the special lands above treeline. The fun starts with a right on Witter Gulch Road. Denver & Cities of the Rockies . In other words, things get really high, really early on the second half. But in terms of climbs, to take on Mount Evans from base to summit, with all of its nearly 30 miles and 7,000 feet of climbing to over 14,127 feet above sea level, is an epic ride. The hardest part is the last 6 miles from Summit Lake up the steep switchbacks to the top. Gloriously fat, sprinting, chirping marmots have kept me entertained for far too many hours on my rides up Mount Evans, while the smaller, more seldom seen pika is always a prize to merely lay eyes on. It’s a shame that the word has been so debilitated through use and mocking of its use to render it almost useless. The ship was slowly righted, but it was during the hard years of the early 1900s that it became apparent that an entirely different direction could pave the way to a new foundation to the economy in Colorado: tourism. That was the day I was informed, while huddling behind the ruins of the old gift shop and restaurant at the top of Mount Evans, that the final few miles that feel like the Monte Zoncolan, in fact average a whopping 5%. Echo Lake (Elevation 10,750) is more or less the halfway point and signals the beginning of the really high altitudes. Route. I really enjoyed this mountain, and have been longing to return here and summit via my road bike. Evans Summit (by car), then into Evergreen for Pizza at Beaujos Pizza; TIP: In regards to driving to the top of Mt. It seemed like a long way to go from there. The Routes I was on top of a 14,000 foot mountain with only knee and arm warmers. Then another. This route has a great trail all the way to Summit Lake and is considered the standard way to climb Evans from a lower trailhead. Ten years later, the road was completed. Echo Lake Lodge (build in 1926) can be found at the entrance to Mount Evans, some 14 miles from Idaho Springs (Interstate 70) and 14 miles from the summit. Its length is … The grade remains at 5-6% once inside the park, and we slowly climbed out of the trees. There’s nothing quite like feeling your head try to rotate a full 360 degrees to try to take in the panorama. Idaho Springs . When to go The Mount Evans Scenic Byway is the highest paved road in Colorado, at 14,130 ft. Colorado’s “New Switzerland” opened by 1930. What I mean to say is there’s no shortage of entertainment. View of the snow capped summit of Mt Evans seen from the blue waters of Echo Lake. The question, however, was how to bring the average citizen to the rarefied heights of the high Rockies. Spalding, near the north end of Summit Lake (12,900'). What a climb. A trail goes around the lake. . Evans and the route involves an elevation gain of 6,724 feet. Evans Summit Mt. Leave Evergreen, CO and access the Mount Evans Road and Mount Evans Recreation Area from Squaw Pass, CO 103 at Echo Lake. 9.2 miles gaining 2,246’ to 12,870’ at 4.4% average grade. The route goes to the Chicago Lakes Overlook, then up Mount Spalding’s low … From Echo Lake to the Mount Evans parking lot, it’s another 14.65 miles. Echo Lake is located along Highway 103 just north of the Mount Evans Entrance station. Back to top. Well, it’s still a bit short of that altitude, but there aren’t too many (paved) roads that flirt so closely with the heavens. After mulling that revelation over a bit in my head, forceful, swirling snowflakes returned me to a more pressing matter. Everything slows down: your speed, your mental acuity, your vision, your thoughts, your inner voice. Trip Tips . 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