Independence Pass closing Monday night because of weather, may not reopen this season
Independence Pass closed at 7 p.m. Monday because of incoming weather and could remain closed for the rest of the fall and winter, state transportation officials announced Monday afternoon.
Crews from the Colorado Department of Transportation sent out a news release just before 3 p.m. Monday announcing the gate closure on Colorado 82, which was set to take place at 7 p.m. on both the Pitkin County and Lake County sides of the Pass.
CDOT officials previously had announced plans to keep Independence Pass open as long as possible this fall because of traffic backups associated with the Grand Avenue Bridge closure in Glenwood Springs.
Crews have been plowing the highway – which goes over the 12,095 foot Continental Divide – in an effort to keep it open, the release states. However, inclement weather forecast for the higher elevations led to the decision to close the road.
“CDOT will continue to monitor the weather through next week to determine if the pass can be reopened,” the release states.
It is the earliest Independence Pass closure since at least 2011, when it closed Nov. 2, according to the CDOT news release. The latest the Pass closed since 2011 was Nov. 17 in 2016.