Wyoming Highway 70

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Wyoming Highway 70 marker

Wyoming Highway 70
Battle Pass Scenic Byway
Route information
Maintained by WYDOT
Length: 57.66 mi[2] (92.79 km)
Restrictions: closed in winter over Battle Pass in the Sierra Madre[1]
Major junctions
West end: WYO 789 in Baggs
East end: WYO 230 in Riverside
Location
Counties: Carbon
Highway system
WYO 59 WYO 71

Wyoming Highway 70 is a state highway in southern Wyoming. The route travels from an intersection with Wyoming Highway 789 in Baggs eastward to Wyoming Highway 230 in Riverside. WYO 70 over Battle Pass is closed during winter[1] (November to April). The section of the route within Medicine Bow National Forest is designated the Battle Pass Scenic Byway.[3]

Route description[edit]

Wyoming Highway 70 begins in Baggs at Wyoming Highway 789 and heads east through southern Carbon County near the Colorado state line. Highway 70 travels through the communities of Dixon and Savery before dipping across the state line, where a short section passes through Slater, Colorado (between mileposts 15.34 and 16.24). This short section through Moffat County, Colorado is not part of the Colorado State Highway System, and is maintained by the Wyoming Department of Transportation.[4] At 16.7 miles, Wyoming 70 intersects with former Colorado State Highway 129, which used to connect US 40 with Wyoming 70. It is now Moffat CR 1. Thereafter the highway travels through very scenic Medicine Bow National Forest (between mileposts 21.25 and 51.10) and passes over Battle Pass at an elevation of 9,955 feet (3,034 m). After leaving the national forest, Highway 70 passes through Encampment and then on to Riverside where it ends at its junction with WYO 230.

During the spring of 2011, a landslide occurred on WYO 70 near milepost 31, about halfway between Baggs and Encampment. The slide destroyed a 1,000-foot length of the highway, and the road was closed to through traffic for several weeks. As a result, a temporary one-lane detour was constructed.[5] Reconstruction of the road where the slide occurred was ruled out after geologic investigations found the slide is likely to continue moving in the future. Work to realign WYO 70 around to the north of the slide area is being done. WYDOT anticipates the realignment project would require two construction seasons, during which time the existing detour would be maintained.[5]

Highway 70 near Dixon, Wyoming.

On November 15, 2012, The Wyoming Highway Commission designated Wyoming State Highway 70 as the Battle Pass Scenic Byway. A local support group, Battle Pass Scenic Byway Alliance, Inc. is a non-profit organization that is coordinating the interpretive signage along this unique roadway across the Continental Divide.

History[edit]

Between the 1940s and 1960s, Wyoming Highway 70 connected with former Colorado State Highway 129, which used to connect US 40 with Wyoming 70. During the time Highway 129 existed, WY 70 didn't exist as it does now. Only the western part from SH 129 to Baggs was designated as Highway 70.[6] Former Colorado State Highway 129 is now Routt County Route 129.

Recreation[edit]

The scenic by-way crosses the Continental Divide

The Continental Divide Trail traverses Battle Pass. Resupply is available in the nearby Town of Encampment to the east. Local camping is available just north of the highway. In 2010 a small trailer was parked just off the highway on private property for the use of thru-hikers.[7]

Major intersections[edit]

State County Location mi km Destinations Notes
Wyoming Carbon Baggs 0.00 0.00 WYO 789 Western terminus
Colorado Moffat Slater 15.8 25.4 CR 1
Wyoming Carbon 16.7 26.9 CR 29 Former SH 129
Riverside 57.66 92.79 WYO 230 Eastern terminus
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Official State Highway Map of Wyoming (Map). Wyoming Department of Transportation. 2014. 
  2. ^ Wyoming Routes 000-099
  3. ^ "Section of WYO 70 designated scenic byway". Wyoming Department of Transportation. November 19, 2012. Retrieved March 1, 2013. 
  4. ^ Colorado Highways: Routes 60 to 79 - Wyoming Highway 70
  5. ^ a b WYDOT - Wyoming Highway 70 slide & realignment
  6. ^ Former Colorado SH 129
  7. ^ < [1] http://www.yogisbooks.com/continental-divide-trail/yogis-continental-divide-trail-handbook>[unreliable source?]

External links[edit]

Route map: Bing / Google

KML is from Wikidata