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If You Are Driving to Telluride This Winter

Discussion in 'United States' started by Legs Akimbo, May 28, 2019.

  1. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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  2. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    That is one serious rock and a multi million $ rebuild by the looks of it. It could stay closed indefinitely if the workaround route isn't too onerous...(I had intended on driving the 145 in Jan 2020. We shall see...)
     
  3. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Jebus. That’s a big rock!
     
  4. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    There's not much at all along Hwy 145, and even Telluride does not get an enormous amount of traffic. I doubt that there is any great imperative to get it open.
     
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  5. Billy_Buttons

    Billy_Buttons A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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  6. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Wow! The problem with driving to Telluride from Durango on US550 via Ridgway is that road is much higher elevation and more likely have deep snow that doesn't melt off in shady areas. Definitely need to plan on having 4WD/AWD or chains. Coming from Durango, the alternative is RT141 and then down thru Placerville.

    I rode with my ski buddy from Taos to Telluride a couple years ago. We drove from Durango to Telluride via RT145 and then took US550 on the way back. The views were stunning. He lives in Albuquerque and I flew home from there.

    US550 headed south, a few miles south above Ouray in Feb 2018, during a very low snow winter


    After going over the first pass south of Ouray
     
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  7. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    The map in the article shows that US550 was closed between Silverton and Purgatory one day in late May, 8:30-1:30. Probably due to avalanche and rock slide danger.

    Folks who fly in/out of Montrose have about an hour drive or shuttle. Not many people use the tiny Telluride airport.

     
  8. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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  9. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Thanks MarzNC. That lines up with what I've read - that the 550 is much more weather impacted and difficult to drive in bad conditions than the 145. In Jan I'll be coming up via Cortez so if its still closed I might go via Dove Creek and Norwood (491,141,145) instead of via Durango & the 550. Had any experience on those roads?
     
  10. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    From MarzNC's first link it looks like they will have a workaround in quite soon. How that will deal with winter (if they don't get a permanent solution in) is a different issue.
     
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  11. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    I can ask my ski buddy. He's probably been on those RT141 at some point. But might as well wait until closer to the date. Jan is early in the winter. Could be that driving US550 won't be a big deal. Then again, if you have to go the long way because there is too much snow . . . will be more fun once you get to Telluride. How long are you staying?
     
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  12. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Got a week from 3rd Jan. Not expecting masses of snow but hoping a good enough % of intermediate and lower end blacks will be open to give us a good ski-as-a-family experience.
     
  13. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    I would expect you to have a good time at Telluride in early January. They have a good free tour and plenty of mountain hosts all over the mountain. Are you staying on the mountain or in town?

    I happened to ride up with a roving host during my one trip to Telluride. (Took advantage of the MCP just before T-ride moved to Epic.) Visibility and wind was pretty bad, so I took him up on the offer of a tour of a blue off that lift. Was useful to learn about the long green on that side as well as how the other blues on the trail map compared. I'm an advanced skier but have friends who are intermediates who like to travel. So sometimes do "tourist skiing" to see how blues or even greens feel when I'm at a new resort.
     
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  14. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    You will enjoy Polar Queen (Lift 10), Revelation (Lift 15) and Coonskin (Lift 7).
     
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  15. shabu_shabu

    shabu_shabu One of Us

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    I see 145 is partially open and it is intended to fully repair it in the next few weeks.
    https://www.sanmiguelcountyco.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=362

    We were in Telluride late January 2018 and took a break from skiing and did a day circular clockwise drive from and back to Telluride via 550 and 145. Doing it clockwise was recommended by locals. It was perfect weather for driving with the road snow free and was the most spectacular scenery and highly recommended if you a looking for a day off skiing. Ouray, Red Mountain Pass and Silverton on 550 are really interesting and so if the conditions are right I'd strongly recommend going that way. As I recall the only hairy bit was the climb out of Ouray: steep, a bit narrow and no guard rails.

    2018 was a very poor season (eg, the run under Coonskin wasn't open) but for us Aussies we were more than content. In addition to lifts recommended by Legs, the run from the top of Apex lift via See Forever all the way down to Mountain Village is a hoot. The runs under the Plunge lift are genuine blacks but some are groomed. You'll have a great time.
     
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  16. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Stump up for full day private lesson and get to have lunch in the Telluride Club...... much cheaper than joining.
     
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  17. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Yep staying in town. We are first timers in Telluride and a mate who has been before described the mountain village as soulless and the town as soul-enhancing. I trust him so went with that advice.
     
  18. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    The town is great. The Village has a lot more ski in/out, and the gondola runs to midnight so there is no problem getting into town from the Village. The daughter and I did it for most of the nights we ate out. There was not much at all in the Village.
     
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  19. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Thanks Shabu_Shabu. If the specs on the rental cars weren't so uncertain I'd be reasonably relaxed about the driving side of things. But as I'm sure you know locking in an AWD and/or winter tyres is impossible so I'm planning my routes assuming I'll be dished up a 2WD SUV with worn M+S tyres...
     
  20. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Now that there is one lane open, the huge boulder is "debris on highway." ;)

     
  21. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Staying in town is definitely more fun. Depending on where you are located, there are two ways to get up on the mountain in the morning. For the powder day during my trip, I opted to take the bus to the gondola instead of taking the lift across the street from our condo. See Post #11 in my TSD trip report from Feb 2018 for details.

    https://www.theskidiva.com/forums/index.php?threads/telluride-feb-17-21-2018.22575/
     
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  22. MarzNC

    MarzNC Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Where are you renting the SUV? What car rental company?
     
  23. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Hertz out of San Francisco using an Australian aggregator Driveaway to book. Booked the biggest class of SUV which will hopefully increase our chances of a AWD / 4WD variant.
     
  24. Gregah

    Gregah Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Great trip report.
     
  25. Brimmo

    Brimmo Hard Yards

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    IMG_2549.JPG
    Latest reports are that the big boulder on CO145 will remain in situ permanently.

    In April this year I rode a motorbike up 491 from Cortez to Dove Creek, (slow down to not miss the turn off) onto CO141 to Naturita (then turn right to remain on CO141) to Norwood and Telluride. I was surprised at how little traffic was on this road, I mean 30 minutes without seeing another vehicle in either direction - so take care if you decide to drive it.

    You are correct in assuming US550 is much more affected by weather and snow - in one place there is an avalanche roof built over the road. The road was closed for a couple of weeks in March this year (2019) after a major avalanche.

    Photos from the loop ride CO149, US160 and US550 from a couple of years ago in April to see how roads are - although four seasons in one day are always possible.
     

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