Exploring Colorado's Scenic Beauty: Poncha Pass, a Mountain Road

Poncha Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2.751m (9,025ft) above the sea level, located on the boundary of Saguache and Chaffee counties, in the US state of Colorado.

Poncha Pass

Where is Poncha Pass in Colorado?

Set high in south-central Colorado, the pass is located where the Sangre de Cristo Mountains (to the east) and the San Juan Mountains (to the west) meet. The pass links San Luis Valley (south) and the valley of the Arkansas River (north), and splits the Rio Grande River and Arkansas River watersheds.

How long is Poncha Pass?

The road to the summit is totally paved. It’s called U.S. Highway 285. The pass is 34.76km (21.6 miles) long running south-north from Villa Grove (in Saguache County) to Poncha Springs (in Chaffee County). The grades leading to the pass are very moderate (around 5% at the most from the south).

Is Poncha Pass Colorado open?

It is one of the lowest mountain passes in the state. Access to the pass is typically open all year round, but winter weather may cause restrictions and closures due to dangerous weather conditions. Please be vigilant while traveling in the area of falling rocks and other debris. The road is closed sometimes due to mudslides.