State Highway 9

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Beginning near Parkdale close to the Royal Gorge of the Arkansas River, Colorado 9 follows a north-south route through several valleys and plains between the ranges of the Rocky Mountains. The highway generally remains rural in nature, passing through smaller towns and avoiding most larger communities. Upon reaching U.S. 285 and Fairplay, Colorado 9 heads up Hoosier Pass and descends into Breckenridge, Frisco, Dillon and Silverthorne before following the Blue River Valley en route to its northern terminus at U.S. 40 at Kremmling.

Colorado 9 north
Northbound Colorado 9 entering the town of Fairplay just north of U.S. 285. Fairplay is considered to be the model town for the hit comedy Southpark seen on Comedy Central. The mileage sign provides the distance to the next two destinations, Alma and Breckenridge. Photo taken 11/10/03.
This Colorado 9 shield is posted immediately after the Grand County 1 intersection south of Kremmling. County Road 1 travels west, following the railroad and Colorado River toward State Bridge and Colorado 131. Photo taken 08/27/04.
Northbound Colorado 9 intersects Grand County 33, which parallels the Colorado River east from the state highway. The Colorado 9 bridge over the Colorado River is visible in the distance. The old span was still in place at this time. It was demolished by 2007. Photo taken 08/27/04.
Colorado 9 south
Colorado 9 travels south through Silverthorne in Summit County. As the state highway approaches Interstate 70 and U.S. 6, motels and restaurants appear on either side of the road. Here, Colorado 9 passes by Milepost 102 just north of the interchange with I-70. Photo taken 10/18/04.
Southbound Colorado 9 approaches Interstate 70 and U.S. 6. Beyond the freeway, U.S. 6 continues east to Dillon and Loveland Pass. I-70 east travels northerly to Eisenhower Tunnel and Denver. West from Silverthorne, Interstate 70, unsigned U.S. 6 and Colorado 9 south head toward Frisco. Once at Frisco, Colorado 9 resumes its southbound journey toward Breckenridge, while I-70 and U.S. 6 advance west toward Vail and Grand Junction. Photo taken 10/18/04.
Now south of Frisco, Colorado 9 connects with the ski resort town of Breckenridge and Hoosier Pass, then descends into the town of Fairplay. In this scene a snow squall blows snow around Colorado 9 in the vicinity of Breckenridge. This kind of cold weather event is common in the autumn, winter and spring in the mountains. Photo taken 11/10/03.
Breckenridge is a major ski resort that is considered to be on the same tier as Vail and Winter Park. Colorado 9 passes through Downtown Breckenridge, then passes the massive ski resort. Photo taken 11/10/03.
Now ascending to Hoosier Pass, Colorado 9 uses switchbacks to ascend the mountain. Note the slow cautionary speed limit for the highway. Photo taken 11/10/03.
Even though it was November, winter weather has already taken hold on the high passes of the Rocky Mountains. Although Hoosier Pass along Colorado 9 is open year-round, it can be affected by major storms and blowing winds. Photo taken 11/10/03.
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The top of Hoosier Pass marks the county line between Summit County and Park County. Hoosier Pass, elevation 11,541 feet, is situated in the shadow of two fourteener peaks, Mt. Lincoln and Mt. Bross. This pass is part of the Continental Divide, which separates the flow of water to the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean. Snow that lands on this pass will either head west into the Colorado River watershed or east into the South Platte River watershed. Photos taken 11/10/03.
View of southbound Colorado 9 as it descends from Hoosier Pass into Park County. Photo taken 11/10/03.
The first signed route found along southbound Colorado 9 in Park County is County Road 4. Photo taken 11/10/03.
Southbound Colorado 9 reaches the intersection with Park County 6. Photo taken 11/10/03.
In this scene, southbound Colorado 9 approaches Park County 12. Photo taken 11/10/03.
Southbound Colorado 9 enters Alma a few miles north of Fairplay. Even after descending from Hoosier Pass, Alma is at a very high elevation (10,578 feet). It is said that Alma is the highest incorporated city in Colorado. Photo taken 11/10/03.
This mileage sign is found along southbound Colorado 9 after the highway leaves Alma. The next town is Fairplay (U.S. 285), followed by Hartsel. Photo taken 11/10/03.
After leaving Alma and descending a couple hundred feet, Colorado 9 enters Fairplay. Photo taken 11/10/03.
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Continuing south through Fairplay on Colorado 9. Fairplay is perhaps best known as the Colorado town that was the model for the Comedy Central TV show, South Park. A museum for the show is located in town. Photos taken 11/10/03.
Colorado 9 reaches U.S. 285 after passing through the town of Fairplay. Photo taken 11/10/03.
U.S. 285 north heads to Kenosha Pass and Denver, while U.S. 285 south heads to Salida and Hartsel. Bike Route 76 turns to follow U.S. 285 south. The bike route is only shielded once along SH 9 from Frisco south to Fairplay. Photo taken 11/10/03.
Colorado 9 merges with south U.S. 285; they remain together for a few miles, then split thereafter. Colorado 9 goes to Hartsel, and U.S. 285 goes to Salida, Monte Vista and Alamosa. Photo taken 11/10/03.

Photo Credits:

11/10/03, 08/27/04, 10/18/04 by AARoads

Connect with:
Interstate 70

Page Updated 05-04-2017.