Travel Forecast & Tips
I-70 traffic is quite predictable, weather and accidents withstanding. Plan to avoid peak travel times, and enjoy a delay-free trip along I-70. Our weekend travel forecast is updated every Thursday afternoon.
September Weekend Travel Forecast
The coming weeks are some of the best times to visit the Colorado Mountains. The weather is still great, the big crowds are gone, and I-70 traffic is less of a factor. There are still some times you want to avoid, so travel off-peak and enjoy a delay-free trip!
Friday WB – Heavy volume is possible from 2:30-6:00 p.m. Although there were no significant delays in the last two years, this congestion might result in up to 15 minutes extra travel time.
Saturday WB – Light congestion between Floyd Hill and the Eisenhower Tunnel might develop around 11:00 a.m. and continue until around 3:00 p.m. Delays could result in an extra 10-20 minutes travel time between C470 and Silverthorne.
Saturday EB – No congestion-related traffic is predicted.
Sunday EB – Traffic due to volume is expected between 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. In recent years, the peak delay was 20-30 minutes during the early to mid-afternoon hours. Stay late, skip the traffic and save with a GoI70 Peak Time Deal!
*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.
Tips for I-70 mountain travel
- Avoid the Peak Travel Times. If heading eastbound on Saturday or Sunday, plan to leave the mountains after 7:00 p.m. Check the weekend and holiday Travel Forecast.
- Check the road and traffic conditions before you travel.
- Check out the Peak Time Deals local businesses offer to help you avoid peak travel times.
- Spend a Sunday night in the mountains and head to work or school early Monday morning.
- Prepare for I-70 mountain driving conditions. Understand the Traction & Chain Laws.
- Create or join a carpool.
- Consider taking a bus, train, van or rideshare to the mountains and leave the driving to someone else.
Summer Traffic Patterns
(June to mid-September. Based on historical data.)
I-70 summer traffic is fairly predictable so with just a bit of planning travelers can enjoy More Mountains, Less Traffic. Below is the typical summer weekend traffic pattern.
Friday Westbound– There are occasionally moderate delays heading westbound on Friday evenings. Traffic may build between Noon-3:00 p.m., peak around 4:00 p.m., and end between 6:00-7:00 p.m. Delays during this timeframe might mean an added 20 minutes to a trip from C470 to Frisco.
Saturday and Sunday Westbound –On Saturdays, you might experience congestion from 10:00-2:00 p.m. Get an earlier start to avoid traffic. There are rarely westbound delays on Sundays.
Saturday Eastbound- Saturday eastbound traffic tends to be much lower in volume than Sunday but slow traffic might be encountered mid-afternoon/early evening.
Sunday Eastbound – According to historical data, eastbound traffic starts to build around 11:00 a.m. The peak of traffic is consistently between 3:00 and 4:00 pm all summer long. With folks trying to enjoy every bit of daylight in the mountains, the traffic typically doesn’t diminish until approximately 7:00-8:00 p.m. To avoid the traffic, consider staying in the mountains for dinner, or spend Sunday night and head back to the Front Range early Monday morning. Check out the GoI70.com Peak Time Deals for discounts on dining, shopping, activities and Sunday night lodging deals!
Holiday Weekends – when a national holiday falls on a Monday, you can count on Monday afternoon EB traffic to mimic a typical Sunday pattern, but with potentially more volume.
Safety Metering – Safety metering eastbound at the Eisenhower Tunnel goes into effect during high volume times. This process controls the flow of traffic eastbound into the Eisenhower Tunnel, so traffic does not back up in the tunnel. Expect eastbound delays when metering is in effect.
Weather- In the summer, weather plays a large factor in traveler behavior. If rain showers move in early in the day, expect drivers to head back to the Front Range early as well.
Mountain Express Lane – This eastbound express lane provides a more reliable travel time to those willing to pay the toll. Get the ExpressToll pass to pay the posted toll rate. Those without a pass will be billed the posted rate plus a service charge. More info at ExpressToll.com.