- Telluride, Ophir
- 12 miles
- Aerobic Difficulty:
- Time To Allow:
- 1 1/2 - 2 hours
- Trailhead Elevation:
- 8700 feet
Ophir Pass is a real grind, connecting the towns of Telluride with Ophir. The Ophir Pass road gains 2500 vertical feet in about six miles, up to 11789 feet before descending down the other side.
Riders split the peaks of Lookout Mountain at Ophir Pass, located in the heart of the San Juan Mountains. Views are amazing as the ride is almost all above tree-level. Riders here will ride up the very steep roadway with few switchbacks and laden with a ton of rocks. Walking portions of the Ophir Pass road is almost a given.
Ophir Pass Road is the shortest distance between CO-550 (Durango, Silverton) and CO-145 (Telluride). Riders can actually beat a car riding on paved roadways between Telluride and Ophir by riding over the pass. The Ophir Pass roadway is traveled by 4x4 vehicles and is steep and loose in places.
There are no services in Ophir so riders planning on riding both ways should bring plenty of water and food.
Can be shuttled or ridden back to make 24-mile trip.
Time To Allow:
Depends on fitness
High elevation riding
Ophir Pass Road is multi-use so riders may encounter hikers, vehicles and other users and should follow right of way protocol when meeting other groups. Ophir Pass Road is high elevation and can experience sudden weather shifts, so riders should bring appropriate warm layers in anticipation of this. In addition, riders should be prepared with a stocked repair kit, first aid kit and extra food and water.
From Telluride go south on CO-145 for ten miles to FS Road 630/Ophir Pass. Start riding.