Tag Archives: Colorado department of Transportation

Leadville News – November 14

Safe, Budget-Friendly Transportation in Leadville

It’s the beginning of the holiday travel season, as well as slope-fun season. It’s also the time when Leadvillites get-out-of-town to travel during the off-season or to visit family and friends.  Knowing how to get around, and up and down the mountain is essential. There are plenty of public transportation and private shuttle options that can save you a lot of hassle, time and money.

In celebration of this month’s 6th Anniversary of Leadville Today publishing daily news and information you can use, here’s one of Leadville Today’s #MostReadStoires about transportation options. Welcome to America’s highest city and if you’re off to your own adventures; Happy Trails!6_Anniversary_Flashback copy

by Brennan Ruegg, © Leadville Today 

Traveling to and from Colorado’s highest city can be daunting in the wintertime. And although Colorado’s Department of Transportation (CDOT) does a superb job keeping the highways safe, there’s nothing they can do about ill-prepared drivers and unexpected changes in weather. Not everyone has a vehicle prepared to take on the region’s winding, often poorly visible, and slick roadways–in fact, not everyone has a vehicle. So what viable options are there when a friend flies in to visit or when cabin fever sets in?

logo

A traveler can step right off Leadville’s Historic Harrison Avenue into Denver Union Station for under $20, Denver International Airport (DIA) for under $30, and Vail for under $10. While talks continue about re-purposing old stagecoach roads or defunct rails from Eagle to Buena Vista, there is already in place a host of transit methods that run as far as Fort Collins and Glenwood Springs. Whether bringing in family from DIA, tackling last minute Christmas shopping in the city, or getting to-and-from ski resorts, this list of services highlights the best alternatives to taking out the rear-wheel drive and/or bald-tire commuter that serves so well in the summertime. Starting with the closest and cheapest and ending in luxury and convenience, here they are:

documentSummit Stage

The Summit Stage Lake County Link picks up at nine locations in Leadville and connects for $5 to their extensive–and free–network in Summit County that runs to Copper Mountain, Frisco, Silverthorne/Dillon, Keystone, and Breckenridge. The CDOT Frisco Transfer Station connects with Bustang (below), Greyhound, and Park-n-Ride. For more about Summit Stage CLICK HERE for their 2017/2018 winter schedule.

Eco Transiteco-transitlogo

Operating in the Vail Valley and offering destinations such as Minturn, Vail, Beaver Creek, Eagle and Gypsum, this is a service provided by Eagle County Regional Transportation Authority picking up in Leadville twice a day. Purchase a day pass for $14, or $7 buys a one-way ride:  Nobody can deny an alternative to chancing Battle Mountain or Vail Pass in a snowstorm. CLICK HERE for their route schedules.

slider-imageBustang

This CDOT service is now in its 3rd year, stopping twice a day at the Frisco Transfer Center, the closest access point to Leadville. This is a crucial component in getting to and from Colorado’s capital city–with only one connection, for under $20, and in less than four hours. Bustang’s North Line to Fort Collins/Colorado Springs also transfers in Denver. CLICK HERE for a full schedule and fares.

Bustang is operated by Ace Express Coaches who, despite their low fares, provide a luxurious ride with wide and comfortable seating, free wifi, stowaway luggage, and on-board restrooms.

RTD’s A-Line to Denver International Airport

Sponsored by the University of Colorado, RTD’s new A-line is an express train from Denver Union Station to DIA for nine bucks. If headed to the airport via Bustang, this train, departing every 15 minutes, covers the last leg without breaking the $30 mark.

Summit Stage_Winter_LeadvilleToday

Summit Stage’s Lake County Link has expanded service to points beyond.

Shuttle Serviceslogo-cme

For those on tight schedules and with a little more to spend, most of Denver’s shuttle services won’t come direct to Leadville, but pick up at Copper Mountain instead (accessible via Summit Stage). Oftentimes a more private ride, these shuttles are perfect for a straight shot to DIA while getting some work done on a free wifi connection. Book a shuttle for around $45 at whichever time of day is most convenient with Peak1 Express or Colorado Mountain Express.

logo_hertz_appHertz Rental

Want to go your own way, but haven’t a vehicle fit for the drive? Hertz is located on US-24 at the Leadville-Lake County Airport and rents out a selection of vehicles equipped with all-wheel and four-wheel drive. Pick the car up in Leadville and drop it off at DIA, or pitch in with a group of friends to rent out a private ski-shuttle for the weekend. Hertz also offers business rentals at a competitive rate. Currently running deals for seniors, weekend rentals and metro parking, CLICK HERE to connect with Hertz and to place a reservation.

Summit Stage Leadville

Think about these options if having doubts about a vehicle’s performance, waiting to spring for winter tires, or wanting to relax instead of white-knuckling it through the Rockies; a little more planning and patience is involved, but such is the case with most smart choices. Just don’t forget to bring along a good book.

Whether taking a service directly provided by CDOT or otherwise, thanks is always due to those who perform an unparalleled job in making mountain roadways safe in inclement weather (salt-free!) and who provide consistent travel advice, road conditions, and safety information. All this is available 24 hours a day on CDOT’s website, mobile app, or by calling 511.

Be sure to travel safely and conscientiously by whichever means, and remember, the best part about leaving Leadville is coming back!

Brennan Ruegg is a public transit enthusiast, and loves offering travel advice to anyone trying to leave or come into the great city of Leadville.

Latest News – June 22

Hazy Skies Due To Nearby Wildfires

Hazy Morning_leadville

The haze that started to creep in last night under the cover of darkness brought a blood red sunrise over Leadville Today​. The smoke from active wildfires in southwestern Colorado and southwestern Utah continues to drift into Lake County skies. Active wildfires are burning in San Miguel and Montrose counties near Redvale. Also, a 10,950-acre wildfire named the Brian Head Fire continues in southwestern Utah. Keep these communities in your thoughts and prayers and please use extra caution in our neck of the woods too!

Road Weary in Leadville Today

wildfire traffic

Highway 24 South of Leadville was closed twice yesterday the first day of Summer. The early morning incident involved a single car crash with a utility structure leading to a gas leak. Later in the afternoon, it was a small wildfire, that crews quickly extinguished. Photo: Leadville Today/Kathy Bedell.

Yesterday, June 21, which marked the official first day of summer, saw two road closures for Highway 24 South of Leadville. The first occurred at 5:30 a.m. at 24South and Hwy 300 (the turn off to the Fish Hatchery). As the Xcel Energy guy at the scene put it – “a guy who didn’t quite make the curve careened into a tough shed shack which housed some utility lines/equipment.” That crash caused a gas leak and forced the highway closure for early morning commuters, re-routing traffic on to County Road 6, also known as the Long & Derry Road to locals. Crews got things under control and the road re-opened after a couple of hours.

xcel energy

Xcel Energy crews replaced the gas utility lines damaged during a single vehicle crash early Wednesday morning. Photo: Leadville Today/Kathy Bedell

Later in the afternoon about 4 p.m. there was a wildfire reported near Crystal Lake which stopped traffic in both directions on Highway 24 again for about an hour. While fire officials are still investigating the situation – which fortunately only burned about 3/4 acre – initial reports from the scene indicated the source may have been from a lighter fluid can.

Of course, foremost on locals’ minds has been the “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue.

The following is the official word from the Colorado Department of Transportation’s (CDOT) Mark Bunnell with the Region 3 Traffic Operations. Of course, Lake County residents, old and new, full-timers and part-timers and visitors alike had a lot to say on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Join the conversation.

In the meantime there will be CDOT workers, as well as local street crews, back out on the avenue again today and tomorrow, so please be courteous and take extra caution.

Roadsafe Traffic Systems restriped Harrison Avenue (US-24) in Leadville yesterday for three lanes (previous was four lanes) and a bike lane. Attached are several photos showing the completed striping. Roadsafe will be replacing the existing crosswalks and stop bars and installing new left-turn arrows and bike symbols on Thursday and Friday. I plan to get more photos next week after the stencil work is completed. In addition, this morning the CDOT signal electricians installed two exclusive left-turn lane signs on the signal mast arms at the 6th Street traffic signal. Thanks to the Leadville City Streets crew for putting out “No Parking” signs, and for the Leadville Police Department Officers who helped enforce it. We would not have been able to stripe the bike lane with cars parked along Harrison Avenue. Thank You. – Mark Bunnell.

Restripe Harrison Avenue CDOT_1

The “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue will see completion today and tomorrow (June 22 & 23) as Colorado Department of Transportation crews return for additional stenciling and signage for Leadville’s main street’s new traffic reconfiguration. Join the conversation over on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Photo: CDOT/Mark Burnell.

Restripe Harrison Avenue CDOT_2

The “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue will see completion today and tomorrow (June 22 & 23) as Colorado Department of Transportation crews return for additional stenciling and signage for Leadville’s main street’s new traffic reconfiguration. Join the conversation over on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Photo: CDOT/Mark Burnell.

Restripe Harrison Avenue CDOT_3

The “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue will see completion today and tomorrow (June 22 & 23) as Colorado Department of Transportation crews return for additional stenciling and signage for Leadville’s main street’s new traffic reconfiguration. Join the conversation over on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Photo: CDOT/Mark Burnell.

There is also road work being done out at the Turquoise Lake. Travelers could find a section of County Road 4 closed to through traffic between the Hagerman Pass turnoff and the May Queen Campground. Lake County Road and Bridge crews are repairing some bad spots along the rough lake road which is seeing increased traffic with every passing day.

Full access to campgrounds should not be impeded. However drivers should use County Road 9 (the lake’s northern road way) to access May Queen and Timberline Lake as well as other popular hiking trailheads in the area.

It’s that time of year folks, so please be extra careful on the roads and anytime using an open flame for work or fun! Thanks to the local emergency crews for keeping everyone safe! – Leadville Today Staff Report.

Turquoise Lake Road Repair

Lake County Public Works Road and Bridge Crews installed the the culvert at the western end of Turquoise Lake last fall. The coming weeks will see road repairs in the area of the May Queen Campground as crews repair the rough lake road and eventually lay down some new pavement. Photo: Leadville Today/Kathy Bedell.