Colorado Mtn Passes

RIVER watersheds

Mountain Passes in the Heart of the Rocky Mountains

The Mountain Passes in the Heart of the Rockies are true ‘E’ Ticket rides.

These passes are epic Colorado Motorcycle Adventures.

Heart of the Rockies

Why is this area called the Heart of the Rockies ? The Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad called Salida and the Arkansas River Valley the Heart of the Rockies from the 1920’s to the 1990’s

Scroll down for Information on Specific Passes in the Heart of the Rocky Mountains.

  • E Ticket – An E ticket was a type of admission ticket used at the Disneyland theme parks before 1982, where it admitted the bearer to the newest, most advanced, or best rides and attractions.

Colorado Headwaters Map


Mountain Passes of the Heart of the Rockies in Colorado. Chaffee County is in Heart is the Rockies.

Chaffee County has more ‘Fourteener’s than any other County in the United States.

All of these passes could be negotiated by any competent rider on a properly set up ADV Motorcycle.

  • The Passes in the heart of the Rocky Mountains are in the headwaters and watersheds of 4 major American Rivers.
  • The Arkansas, Rio Grande, South Platte and the Colorado rivers.
  • The quickest route from one town to the other in the Rocky Mountains is often up and over a mountain, which explains why Colorado has so many high mountain passes.
  • It’s passes like these that offer incredible rewards for those daring enough to traverse them.
14 teeners in the Heart of the Rockies (Clickable)
  • Mountain passes—trade routes during the mining era—offer long rides with stunning scenery.
  • History buffs can travel along the old railroad lines like Hagerman Pass, Hancock Pass and the Alpine loop, Marshall Pass, Poncha Pass and Trout Creek and imagine them as they were in the early mining and railroad days.
  • The plentiful passes of the region, open spaces and majestic views offer endless opportunities for off-road fun.

Hwy 50 and Hwy 285 crossroads

The Crossroads of the Rockies are in Chaffee County. Hwy’s 285 and Hwy 50.

Hwy 24 & 285 Trout Creek Pass
Hwy 24 & 285 on Trout Creek Pass
Sawatch Range Passes / Continental Divide.
  1. Hagerman.
  2. Independence.
  3. Cottonwood.
  4. Tincup.
  5. Hancock.
  6. Cumberland.
  7. Black Sage.
  8. Old Monarch.
  9. Monarch
Marshall Pass Railroad Map from the 1900s
Marshall Pass Denver & Rio Grande Railroad Map late 1800’s

(Click to view)

Sangre de Cristo Range Passes.
  1. Marshall.
  2. Poncha.
  3. Hayden.
  4. Medano.
Mosquito Range Passes.
  1. Mosquito Pass. 
  2. Weston.
  3. Trout Creek.
  4. Breakneck
Northern San Juan Range Passes.
  1. Canero.
  2. Ute Pass.
  3. Otto Mears Tollroad.
Heart of the Rocky Mountain Passes
Heart of the Rocky Mountain Passes

Passes of the Crossroads Region Numbered


Rocky Mountain Pass Signs

Weston Pass
Weston Pass 11,921 feet


Great Sand Dunes Info

Hayden Pass Info

Hancock Pass and the Alpine Tunnel

Hagerman Pass Info

Independence Pass and Aspen

Marshall Pass Info

Mosquito Pass info

Otto Mears Tollroad and Bonanza

Old Monarch and Monarch Pass

Sangre de Cristo Mountain Range and Medano Pass

Tincup Pass Info

Trout Creek Pass

Weston Pass

Rail History Chaffee County

Rail History Links

Crossroads of the Rockies Area History