Located in the Rocky Mountain range in Clear Creek County sits the majestic Mount Evans, rising to just above 14,200 feet. One of Colorado’s illustrious “fourteener” mountains (summits above 14,000 feet), Mt. Evans is the closest fourteener to Denver. The mountain is so immense in size that it can be seen from over 100 miles to the east.
Something unique about Mt. Evans as opposed to other fourteeners is the fact that you can drive almost to the top. The Mount Evans Scenic Byway allows visitors to travel by car (or bike) to just below the summit of Mt. Evans. This highway is only open in the summer, and takes pride in being the highest paved roadway in North America. For the adventurous traveler, there are also multiple hiking trails that lead from Echo Lake to the summit, Guanella Pass, Mt. Bierstadt (14,065’), and other sections of the mountain.
This famed mountain has held multiple names but the present day name, Mt. Evans, was named in 1895 for Colorado’s second governor, John Evans. Mount Evans is also host to one of the most excruciating bike races in America, the Mount Evans Hill Climb. This race is held in late July and features 7,000 feet of climbing over the 27 mile race. Wildlife are abundant along the drive from Idaho Springs to Mount Evans. Mountain Goats, Bighorn Sheep and other variety of animals live at this high elevation. Furthermore, guests travel through three different life zones on the way to the summit; Montane Life Zone, Subalpine Life Zone, Alpine Life Zone. Once rated on tripadvisor.com as the number two site to see in Denver, the hour drive from Idaho Springs to the summit of Mount Evans is a must-do for any local or visitor to Colorado.