Heavy traffic on the highways along the Front Range and areas to the west is anticipated in Colorado over the Memorial Day weekend, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT).

According to the CDOT press release, westbound Interstate 70 is expected to experience additional traffic Friday and Saturday, and that motorists should be prepared for longer drive times along eastbound I-70, especially from Summit County to the Denver area. 

Due to Memorial Day weekend, CDOT has suspended construction and maintenance projects starting noon Friday (May 24). Projects will resume Tuesday, May 28. The only exception is for emergency operations. 

The CDOT press release says this is the schedule for roadways and passes:

·     SCHEDULED TO OPEN FRIDAY, MAY 24

o  Guanella Pass between Georgetown and Grant

·     DELAYED OPENING

o  State Highway 5 – Mount Evans

o  State Highway 82 over Independence Pass between Twin Lakes and Aspen.  Scheduled to open in early June.

o  Trail Ridge Road between Estes Park and Grand Lake (Rocky Mountain National Park)

o  Kebler Pass in the Crested Butte area.  Scheduled to open late May or early June.

o  Cottonwood Pass between Buena Vista and Gunnison County.  Scheduled to open Saturday, June 22.

Weather permitting, all specified roadways will remain open throughout the summer.


According to the CDOT press release these are their tips for safe driving:

1.    Watch for potholes. Winter’s freeze/thaw cycle weather can damage roadways, including the creation of potholes.  Spring rain also can make them difficult to see.  And they can damage your vehicle, requiring expensive repairs. Keep a safe following distance in case the driver in front of you reacts unpredictably. Avoid swerving if you can to avoid a pothole.

2.    Slow down for spring showers. Roads become slick when it first begins to rain because rainwater mixes with road contaminants, like as oil and grease.  Increase your following distance to allow for proper braking.

3.    Watch for pedestrians and bikes. Warmer temperatures mean more people are outside walking or bicycling.  Slow down and pay extra attention at crosswalks and along roadways.

4.    Share the road with motorcyclesMotorcycles may quickly come in and out of your blind spots due to their speed and size. Always take a second look with more motorcycles out on the road.

5.    Animals are on the move. Animal activity increases during the spring, either due to mating season or because they are waking up from winter hibernation.  Deer are most active at dawn and dusk.

6.    Maintain proper tire air pressureTires lose air due to the cold winter temperatures and now can be underinflated.  Warmer temperatures can cause tires to be overinflated.

7.    Inspect your tires. Adequate tire tread is important for safe driving in wet weather because the tread moves water away from the tire.  Less tread means reduced traction.