“Million Dollar Highway” – Ouray to Silverton


Million Dollar Highway, September 2016

Southwest Colorado’s “Million Dollar Highway”—also known, less memorably, as Route 550—traverses some of the most breathtaking scenery in the state. With sharp curves, steep grades, and a conspicuous lack of guard rails, it is also one of the most harrowing drives in the Rockies. The 23-mile section connecting Ouray to Silverton features historic ghost towns, stunning waterfalls, and spectacular vistas of the San Juan Mountains, headlined by a steep climb up and over Red Mountain Pass (11,018’), named for a string of nearby peaks streaked with ruddy iron ore.


Bear Creek Falls, just south of Ouray


Abrams Mountain and Uncompahgre Gorge


Crystal Lake in Ironton Park with Red Mountain beyond


Red Mountain #1 from the Million Dollar Highway


Red Mountain #3 near the old mining town of Ironton


Distant moose off the road to South Mineral Campground


Looking north toward Ouray from outside Silverton


San Juan Mountains south of Silverton

This entry was posted in Colorado, San Juan National Forest, Scenic Byways, Uncompahgre National Forest and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to “Million Dollar Highway” – Ouray to Silverton

  1. Pingback: High Bridge Trail (Box Canyon Park, CO) | Live and Let Hike

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