Lizard Head Pass

Lizard Head Pass, the most beautiful drive in America

Lizard Head Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.116m (10,222ft) above the sea level, located in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado, USA. The grades on both sides of the pass are mild for automobile traffic.

The pass is traversed by the asphalted San Juan Scenic Byway (Colorado State Highway 145). The best time to visit is mid-July to early August. The San Juan Skyway is a spectacular drive through the San Juan, Uncompahgre, Wilson and Sneffels Ranges. Colorado's first National Forest Scenic Byway loops through the San Juan Mountains, and has been called "The Most Beautiful Drive in America." Lizard Head Pass is approximately 10 miles south of the town of Telluride on CO 145.

The drive is definitely worth it. Don’t forget your camera! At over 10,00 feet, this gentle Colorado pass provides great views of the southern part of the state. Suitable for all vehicle types, this is a great drive for someone who is not looking for a technical outing. See waterfalls in spring, wildflowers in summer, golden aspen in fall or a snowy wonderland in winter. It’s surrounded with meadows scattered with wildflowers adjacent to spruce/fir and aspen forests with awe–inspiring backdrops of the snow covered peaks. Thunderstorms often develop in the afternoon in the Colorado high country. Visiting early and being back by your vehicle early in the day is advisable. Be aware of high altitude sickness, which can be life threatening. Hypothermia can be a hazard throughout the year. Watch the weather in September and be prepared for an early snow storm.


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NOTICE: Due to the spread of COVID-19, many points of interest and roads are closed and travel is not recommended. Please follow all local health authority directives before venturing off, and stay safe.