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Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

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Eastleigh, United...
posts: 8
reviews: 22
Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

We plan to fly BA to Denver next June and drive to Salt Lake City for a Convention amd return to Denver afterwards. Can you advise interesting route and any other things to see whilst in the area. We want to get the most possible out of the trip.

Uden, The...
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
posts: 51,302
reviews: 42
1. Re: Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

Hi

How long are you staying?

Tet

Torrey, Utah
Destination Expert
for Torrey, Capitol Reef National Park
posts: 1,009
reviews: 46
2. Re: Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

How long do you want to spend on each leg of the drive?

colorado
posts: 705
reviews: 6
3. Re: Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

For the Scenic drive, take I-70 west to Green River, Utah. When you take I-70 west from Denver, it will take you through the Rockies. If you have time, about 40 minutes from the airport in Denver off of I-70 west is the gambling town of Blackhawk (take Idaho Springs exit). It is about 15 minutes off the highway. Otherwise, continue on I-70 west and stop and look around the ski resort of Vail and have lunch at the Sweet Basil restaurant. Vail is beautiful in the summer. After you leave Vail, keep heading west on I-70 and follow the Colorado River through scenic Glenwood Canyon. If you have time, you can detour off I-70 at Glenwood Springs and head to the ski resort of Aspen (about 50 miles each way from the highway). Or you can continue on I-70 west through Grand Junction, Colorado (fill up with gas here as there are some long stretches of no services). About 2 hours west of Grand Junction, Colorado you will reach Green River, Utah, get off here and follow the 2 lane highway to Salt Lake. It is scenic, but people tend to travel fast on this road. You will be on this 2 lane road for about 2 hours. Total trip will take you about 9 hours with no stops. If you want the trip to be shorter with not much scenery take I-25 north out of Denver to Wyoming and than I-80 west to Salt Lake City. That trip will take about 7 hours with no stops. You might try www.mapquest.com. It will give maps and approximate driving times.

Torrey, Utah
Destination Expert
for Torrey, Capitol Reef National Park
posts: 1,009
reviews: 46
4. Re: Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

"detour off I-70 at Glenwood Springs and head to the ski resort of Aspen (about 50 miles each way from the highway). "

Blech, this would be about the worst thing I could imagine doing on a trip like this. Traffic, yuppies, overpriced stores and restaurants...

A better side trip would be to follow 128 down the Colorado River towards Moab then drop in at Arches before going back to I70. Rather than taking 6 from Green River to SLC continue on I70 up and over the San Rafael Swell (stop at all the scenic overlooks) and pick up UT10 north.

We really need to know how long you want to spend travelling to make realistic suggestions, you could spend a week each way without seeing it all.

Eastleigh, United...
posts: 8
reviews: 22
5. Re: Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

Thanks for your suggestions. We have a maximum of 4 days to travel from Denver to Salt Lake City and six days for the return leg. Do you think this is possible?

Torrey, Utah
Destination Expert
for Torrey, Capitol Reef National Park
posts: 1,009
reviews: 46
6. Re: Driving Denver to Salt Lake City

It's definitely possible, it's dead easy in fact. I drove from Denver to my home in Torrey last Sunday in 7 hours, that's not quite as far as SLC but still... It's just a question of what you want to do along the way, you need to figure that out and plan accordingly. So what is it you want to see from the suggestions made so far?

Bob Palin

www.fremontriver.com