Red Mountain Pass is one of the most demanding and risky mountain passes in Colorado. The division between San Juan and Ouray County straddles it and derives part of its name from the Red Mountain found close by. Also playing a part in the name is the rock comprised of iron oxide.
It’s important to note how treacherous Red Mountain Pass can be for someone who uses a Jeep or off-road vehicle to travel through it, particularly during the winter. The pass is moderately steep and on its north, switchbacks add to its treacherous trek. Despite continuing road paving, which can obstruct entry for a substantial amount of time, avalanches tend to be a not so uncommon occurrence. There is also a short, winding section of the Red Mountain Pass that where a shoulder is not present, supplying those who are a novice with an extra degree of danger and a huge obstacle for seasoned drivers.
It is probably wiser to refrain from attempting the Red Mountain Pass until winter has left and the warmer, less slippery seasons arrive, particularly for off-roading fans that are just getting their feet wet. Seasons such as fall and spring go far in improving traveling conditions, and they also make it a pleasingly picturesque experience to drive across the pass.
This update is provided by Ouray Mountain Adventures, Incorporated. Our Ouray Jeep trails allow you to explore the Rocky Mountains and we offer full or half day reservations. For more information on our Ouray Jeep rental rates and options including available vehicles, rates, and rental policies, call 970.919.1005 or 888.919.3256. You can also visit us at 125 3rd Avenue, Ouray, Colorado 81427.