One of Colorado’s Scenic Byways and mostly closed in the winter, Guanella Pass makes for a beautiful back route between I-70 and South Park, with a variety of montane habitats from willow carrs, to spruce-fir woodland, to alpine tundra. American Three-toed Woodpeckers can often be found in the forest, along with Fox Sparrows in the willows, and (with luck) White-tailed Ptarmigan on the tundra. For those looking to hike Mt. Bierstadt, the trail from the top of Guanella goes through more prime ptarmigan habitat, as well as offers the chance of Brown-capped Rosy-Finch. Guanella is a very popular trip for leaf-peepers looking for fall aspen colors, so be prepared for long lines of traffic traveling over the pass in autumn.
County: Clear Creek
Directions: From I-70: take exit 228 and go south under the freeway; at the roundabout, go west onto Argentine St. At the "Y" continue west onto Brownell St., which ends at 6th St. Head south on 6th St. to Ross St., and go west on Ross St to 2nd St. Head south on 2nd St. - it leads onto Guanella Pass Rd./FR 381. The campground is along the road one mile east of the pass.
Dates of Access: Closed during the winter months
Hours: Daylight hours
Restrictions: Please obey all rules and regulations
Parking: Gravel parking area
Lodging: Primitive camping and hotels in Georgetown
Handicapped Access: Limited; some viewing from car
» Visit the website for Guanella Pass