It’s official: Independence Pass is closed for the season

Staff report
Leigh Vogel/The Aspen Times
Leigh Vogel/The Aspen Times

The Aspen area’s latest blast of snow knocked Highway 82 at Independence Pass out of commission for the season Monday.

The Colorado Department of Transportation decided to keep the pass closed for the winter, three days ahead of the scheduled closure on Thursday.

The pass closed Oct. 31 after a snowstorm created drifts up to 4 feet high on the Aspen side, but CDOT said it would re-evaluate whether to reopen Monday. More snow fell late Sunday and into Monday, making it an easy decision.

“Due to the snowfall and adverse conditions, as well as another storm in the forecast for (Monday night and today), the season closure is now in place,” CDOT’s announcement said.

The closure affects an 18-mile stretch of the highway, from about four miles east of Aspen to a point west of Twin Lakes. The summit of the pass is at 12,095 feet.

CDOT aims to reopen the pass each spring before Memorial Day weekend, weather permitting.