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TRAVEL FORECAST & TIPS

I-70 traffic is quite predictable unless affected by weather or accidents. Plan to avoid peak travel times and enjoy a delay-free trip along I-70. Our weekend travel forecast is updated every Thursday afternoon.

Memorial Holiday Weekend Travel Forecast

Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer and always a big travel weekend on the I-70 mountain corridor. The good news is that traffic patterns are predictable so a little advanced planning will help I-70 travelers avoid congestion. The weather will be a mix of sun and clouds with afternoon rain in the forecast Friday-Sunday. Monday is forecasted to be dry and sunny! Enjoy the long, holiday weekend!

Friday WB – Plan for traffic to begin as early as 11:00 a.m. and end by 8:30 p.m. Travel delays will peak in the 2:00-4:00 timeframe, primarily in the Floyd Hill area, with an additional 30 minutes of travel time.

Friday EB – There could be moderate traffic this afternoon as some folks head east for their holiday weekend plans but no significant delays are anticipated.

Saturday WB – Moderate traffic will begin around 8:30 a.m. and last until around 5:00 p.m. with the heaviest traffic occurring from 10:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Last year there were delays of 30 minutes between C470 and Silverthorne.

Sunday WB – Traffic  volume will build around 11:00 a.m. and last until 1:30 p.m. but the last three years showed only minimal delays.

Monday WB – There might be some volume from 10:00-Noon but with no significant delays.

Saturday EB – The last three years on this holiday weekend, eastbound travel was minimal as folks stayed in the mountains for the long weekend.

Sunday EB – This will be a busy travel day, but with slightly less volume than Monday. Traffic could start to build by 11:3O a.m. and abate soon after 6:00 p.m. 

Monday EB – The traffic pattern will mimic a typical Sunday, but with higher volumes. If you want to avoid delays, head eastbound before 10:30 a.m. or after 8:00 p.m.  The peak travel times will be Noon-4:00 p.m. with an extra 45 min of travel time between Silverthorne and C470.

*The GoI70.com Travel Forecast is based on historical data, along with an estimation of how weather, construction, public events and other factors might impact travel.

I-70 DAILY SNOW

Update:

That's a wrap on the 2023-24 winter season! Stay tuned to the OpenSnow app and OpenSnow.com to catch the best weather window for your next adventure, no matter the season. Thank you so much for your continued support of OpenSnow and we'll see you back here in November 2024.

Read this post at OpenSnow

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TIPS FOR I-70 MOUNTAIN TRAVEL

IMPORTANT INFO TO KNOW

Weather, Road Conditions & Accidents are impossible to predict and can escalate the level and duration of delays dramatically. Check CDOT’s CoTrip.org before you travel.

Colorado’s Traction Law is in effect Sept 1-May 31, regardless of current weather conditions. Learn if your tires meet the Traction Law specifications here.

The Mountain Express Lanes are open on the weekends and holidays to provide a faster and more reliable travel time between Denver and the mountains. Get the Express Toll pass to pay the posted toll rate. Those without a pass will be billed the posted rate plus a service charge. Order the pass at ExpressToll.com.

Holiday Weekends – When a national holiday falls on a Monday, you can count on Monday afternoon eastbound traffic similar to a typical Sunday pattern, but with higher volume.

Metering – Traffic metering goes into effect during very high-volume times at the Eisenhower Johnson Tunnel on the eastbound approach.  Metering controls the flow of traffic eastbound towards the Eisenhower Tunnel so traffic does not back up in the tunnel, causing potential safety issues.

TYPICAL WINTER TRAFFIC PATTERNS

With just a bit of planning, travelers can enjoy More Mountains, Less Traffic. Below is the typical winter weekend traffic pattern. The heaviest volumes on the I-70 mountain corridor occur around the holidays and on weekends in January and February, but plan for weekend traffic during the entire ski season. Check the detailed weekend Travel Forecast at the top of this page, posted each Thursday.

Friday Westbound – Traffic volumes are moderate from approximately 2:00-7:00 p.m. with congestion the most likely to occur in the Floyd Hill area.

Friday Eastbound – A relatively new occurrence, as more daytrippers ski on Friday, there is often slowing 2:00-4:00 p.m.

Saturday Westbound – To beat the traffic, plan to leave the Front Range by 6:00 a.m. Traffic is consistently at its highest between 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m., resulting in up to one hour of additional travel time. Speeds return to normal soon after Noon. 

Saturday Eastbound – Saturday eastbound traffic tends to be lower in volume than Sunday. Avoid the 2:00-5:00 p.m. timeframe. 

Sunday Westbound – Traffic is less of an issue westbound on Sunday mornings but delays are possible in the 7:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. timeframe.

Sunday Eastbound – I-70 traffic starts to build as early as 11:30 a.m.  The peak of the traffic occurs between 3:00-6:00 and drops off soon after 8:00 pm. Expect heavy traffic. To avoid the jam, stay in the mountains for dinner, or spend Sunday night and head back to work or school Monday morning.  GoI70.com Peak time Deals provide incentives to avoid peak travel times.

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