Molas Pass is a challenging climb on the Million Dollar Highway

Molas Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.328m (10,918ft) above sea level, located in San Juan County, in the U.S. state of Colorado.

Molas Pass

Where is Molas Pass?

The pass is located in the San Juan Mountains of western Colorado, 7 miles south of the historic town of Silverton, within the San Juan National Forest. The summit hosts a parking lot with an overlook.

Is Molas Pass paved?

The road to the summit is totally paved. It’s called U.S. Highway 550, the Million Dollar Highway.

Is Molas Pass open?

The road is usually open all year round, but can be closed anytime when the access is not cleared of snow. The snow season starts in October, and snow will often close the road in winter. Chains may be required to drive. The scenery of the San Juan’s is unsurpassed and many call this area the American Alps.

Is Molas Pass challenging?

It’s one of the steepest paved mountain passes of Colorado. Though it is one of the higher passes in Colorado, it has only a few switchbacks on the north approach. The climb is pretty steep, and hits a 7% of maximum gradient through some of the ramps. It is considerably less intimidating than Red Mountain Pass.