Scenic Byways and Drives Scenic Byways and Drives

Colorado Scenic Byways Map
Collegiate Peaks Scenic Byway

Creekside Chalets and Cabins: Year-Round Quality Vacation Rentals located in Salida, Colorado.Creekside Chalets and Cabins: Year-Round Quality Vacation Rentals - Vacation in luxury: WiFi, large living room, full kitchen, private hot tub. Spend your days playing along the Collegiate Peaks Byway: 10 14ers to hike, 4 ghost towns to discover, and plenty of fishing, mountain biking, rafting, and kayaking. PET FRIENDLY!

Collegiate Peaks Scenic Byway Map, Colorado Click here to go to the Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway map Click here to go to map legend
Collegiate Peaks Scenic Byway is near Buena Vista, Granite, Howard, Johnson Village, Leadville, Monarch, Nathrop, Poncha Springs, Salida, St. Elmo, Twin Lakes

Collegiate Peaks Scenic Byway

Colorado's newest scenic byway, the Collegiate Peaks Byway, was designated in November of 2005 in order to connect several important cities in South Central Colorado, while providing scenic vistas, undeveloped ranchlands, and recreational activities such as skiing, fishing, mountain climbing, rafting and kayaking. The byway stretches 57 miles north to south connecting Salida to Granite.

The byway provides many opportunities to explore the past. Scattered with many historic buildings, such as the Old Nathrop Schoolhouse built in 1881 or the Gas Creek School built in 1890 and used till 1942. Be sure to also visit the Hutchinson Ranch, an 1870's homestead registered with the National Historic registry. The Buena Vista Heritage Museum, completed in 1883, gives visitors an opportunity to learn more about Buena Vista.

The Midland Tunnels are also worth your exploration. The tunnels are the remains of the Midland Railroad, the area's first standard gauge railroad. The Midland Railroad Company had to dig into the hillside, creating a series of short tunnels for the train to pass through. These tunnels offer an enjoyable hike for deep exploration.

The byway runs through the Collegiate Peaks wilderness area, named so because of the many nearby fourteeners of the Sawatch Range with names of prestigious universities: Mt. Oxford, Mt. Harvard, Mt. Yale, Mt. Princeton, and Mt. Columbia. Also worth your time is the Highway of the Fourteeners, a 19-mile stretch of highway with views of 10 of Colorado's fourteeners. From this highway you can view Mounts Princeton, Yale, Columbia, Harvard, Belford, Oxford, Huron, La Plata, Elbert, and Missouri Mountain, and the area is filled with many lakes, scenic overlooks and the 13,000' Buffalo Peaks. Explore these roads off the Collegiate Peaks byway to discover the wilderness area in more depth.

Location: Start in either Salida or Poncha Springs and make your way north to Highway 25. From here, you'll pass through Centerville, Nathrop, Buena Vista, and Riverside. Find the end of your trip at Granite. This byway also connects to the nearby Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway and West Elk Loop Scenic Byway.

Places to Stay & Fun Things to Do

Antero Hot Springs Cabins - Private Soaking Pools Web page link icon Photos on page icon
Vacation near Buena Vista and Salida, Colorado at Historic Antero Hot Springs Cabins. With a PRIVATE Creekside NATURAL HOT SPRING POOL. In the heart of the Fourteener Region - the Collegiate Peaks!
BV Jeeps and ATVs Web page link icon Photos on page icon
Buena Vista = Mountain Back-Country Adventure! A true Colorado Experience: ride a Jeep or ATV have a fantastic time getting to our highest peaks, see ghost towns, wildlife. Rentals: Hourly, half-day, full-day.
National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum | Matchless Mine Tours Web page link icon Photos on page icon
Discover the colorful history of Mining at this Smithsonian Museum of the Rockies in Leadville! Summer tours of the famous Matchless Mine and Baby Doe Tabor Cabin. A National Hall of Fame of our mining past.

More Activities & Information

Buena Vista Area, Colorado includes: Johnson Village, Nathrop, St. Elmo

Leadville & Twin Lakes Area, Colorado includes: Granite, Twin Lakes

Salida, Colorado includes: Howard, Monarch, Poncha Springs

Scenic Byways in Colorado

Click to return to main Colorado Scenic Byway Map

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