Traveling Interstate 70 across Colorado is a crapshoot,with closures common along the I-70 corridor, especially during the winter/snow months.  Western Colorado's Glenwood Canyon is near the top of I-70's most often closed section.

According to analysis of CDOT data by the  Post Independent, Vail Pass is the most-often closed section of I-70, with Glenwood Canyon garnering the second most closures.

The data shows that between 2012 and 2015 there was a closure along I-70 every 2.4 days. In that span there were some 600 incidents which closed the highway at least in one direction, totally more than 1000 hours of at least partial closure.

Our best advice is to expect the unexpected from now until the spring thaw if you are traveling Interstate 70. Here's what that means.

  • Give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination. The median closure time is just over one hour, so build a cushion into your travel time. Allow for a possible closure as well as for slower drive times because of icy road conditions.
  • Pack extra blankets, water, and snacks for the just-in-case scenario of getting stopped for an extended period of time. It would make sense to have a couple of containers available in the event you are not stopped anywhere near some restroom facilities.
  • Keep your vehicle gassed up. Instead of waiting until you get down to a quarter of a tank, start looking for a gas station when your tank reaches half full. That way, if you do get stopped along side the road  you will have plenty of gas to run the engine so you can stay warm.

If you are able to make it across the corridor without delays, consider yourself fortunate, and take advantage of the extra time you possible then have to enjoy a cup of coffee or a sweet iced tea.

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