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Guanella Pass
Clear Creek County, Colorado
Araphaho National Forest, Pike National Forest
Clear Creek Ranger District, South Platte Ranger District
View this on the Colorado Trailheads Map

County Roads: 62, 381
Trail Type: Straight Through
Nearby Towns: Georgetown, Grant
Nearby Trails: Webster Pass, McClellan Mountain, Argentine Pass, Saxon Mountain, Geneva Creek
Season: Year Round
Trail Length: 23.45 miles
Elevation: 8,617 to 11,706 feet

This trail is suitable for all vehicles, even passenger cars, and does not require 4-wheel drive at any point. Much of it is paved and it is always wide enough for two cars to pass. A lot of work has been done to this trail over the last few years, and almost all of it is very smooth and nice.

This is a great pass for connecting I-70 and Highway 285, between Georgetown and Grant. It's a good one to remember so you don't have to go around the long way if you need to be on the other highway.

The road is rough and filled with potholes near both ends. The majority of it between these ends has curbs and fencing, with many spots to pull off of the road to view the scenery. There is also an overlook in the middle that has ample parking and the best views of the mountains around the pass itself. This overlook is just to the north of the actual pass.

There is usually a lot of traffic, especially on the weekends, and it is a great place to see the aspen trees change their colors in the fall. This is a fantastic trail to bring visiting relatives to, complete with a short and easy hike at the overlook that goes to the pass itself.

Combine this trail with others like Webster Pass, Georgia Pass and Boreas Pass to move back and forth between the two major highways and see some fantastic Colorado scenery.

Information last updated on September 13th, 2008.

Member Reports

Driving Directions

From Denver you can take I-70 to Georgetown and travel south from the exit. You will see many signs for Guanella Pass. Some are white boards and others are the state Scenic Highway signs (blue with a Columbine flower).

You can also take Highway 285 to Grant, following the sign to travel north on Guanella Pass.

Meeting Places

If you are taking the Pass from north to south, meet on I-70 at the Starbucks in Downieville. If you are taking the Pass from south to north, meet at the Loaf N' Jug gas station in Aspen Park (Conifer).

Additional Information

Low-End Rating: 1
High-End Rating: 1
Rock Crawling:
Dirt & Mud:
Water Crossings:
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Trail Photographs

Georgetown Entrance To The Pass Creek By The Trail Lake View

Maps and Coordinates
(Click a map to view full size)

Trail in Red
400 x 900 pixels
266 KB

Guanella Pass (GPS Exchange File)
Guanella Pass Track (Google Earth Track)
Guanella Pass Trailhead (Google Earth Placemark)
Overlook (Google Earth Placemark)

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Trail information is only accurate on the date posted. Trails may have changed or closed since that date. Use this information for historical purposes only. Contact the Forest Service or Bureau of Land Management for up-to-date trail information.

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