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Review Highlights
This is a beautiful drive

that takes you fro. Canon city into Victor. It is a great drive if you are headed to Cripple Creek... read more

Reviewed December 3, 2018
via mobile
Beautiful drive

This is a very scenic and gorgeouse drive. I would suggest it for anyone who likes to drive unpaved... read more

Reviewed November 6, 2018
Cripple Creek, Colorado
via mobile
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  • Excellent80%
  • Very good16%
  • Average3%
  • Poor0%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“canon city”(50 reviews)
“wheel drive”(13 reviews)
“great drive”(9 reviews)
Mostly unpaved, this road travels between Cripple Creek and Canon City and promises outstanding views.
Cripple Creek, CO
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All reviews canon city wheel drive great drive blind corners high clearance red canyon single lane pavement ends sign saying oncoming traffic short cut scary drive traffic coming easy drive awesome views pay attention by accident
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1 - 10 of 161 reviews
Reviewed December 3, 2018 via mobile

that takes you fro. Canon city into Victor. It is a great drive if you are headed to Cripple Creek. Another of the great two way traffic roads that are single lane...lol. If the side of a mountain dirt road...with traffic coming out you makes...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank beachbumBELLA
Reviewed November 6, 2018 via mobile

This is a very scenic and gorgeouse drive. I would suggest it for anyone who likes to drive unpaved scenic drives and would suggest a 4 wheel or all shell drive vehicle if you have any with you who are scared of heights I would...More

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank mrmuttley62
Reviewed October 9, 2018 via mobile

We took this drive by “accident” when our GPS directed us from Canon City to Cripple Creek on a family history drive through Colorado. This is a perfectly safe drive, but not for the faint of heart. It is narrow with steep drop offs along...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank GarySLT
Reviewed October 7, 2018 via mobile

This road has amazing views and can be driven in pretty much any type of vehicle. We took it slow just to take in all the beauty. Fall was the perfect time for viewing some spectacular colors.

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank RubiconRachelle
Reviewed September 16, 2018 via mobile

This is really fun little drive from Canyon City to Cripple Creek. Dirt road with some narrow turns on moderate cliffs but easy for any car - no 4WD required at all. Amazing views and fantastic ad-hoc camping along the way. Take time in Cripple...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank bambamhunts
Reviewed September 15, 2018

I do not have many problems driving over high places, etc. but this road is over the top. It is a narrow dirt road with cliffs and a 100+ feet drop. There are no rails and pray you do not meet a car because someone...More

Date of experience: June 2018
2  Thank MIKE C
Reviewed August 27, 2018

If you want a scary drive, this is it! The safer direction is Cripple Creek to Canon City. In that direction you are on the inside of the cliff.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank debradd2017
Reviewed August 27, 2018

Shelf Road is a "must do" in the area. I WOULD NOT recommend driving a car on this road. High ground clearance and 4WD is a must. The scenery is BREATHTAKING along this trek. If you are in a hurry to get from Cripple Creek...More

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank Sam S
Reviewed July 26, 2018

This is a beautiful drive and offers a great variety of scenery, starting in the very desert-like terrain outside Canon City and ascending through multiple vegetation zones as it climbs over 3,000 vertical feet to Cripple Creek. The road is narrow in places and has...More

Date of experience: September 2017
Thank montanapescado
Reviewed July 22, 2018

We traveled the Shelf Road from Canon City north to Cripple Creek. We took Field Avenue from US 50 in Canon, straight up through residential neighborhoods to the intersection with Red Canyon Road (CR 9). This is paved for about 9-10 miles after that, till...More

Date of experience: July 2018
2  Thank MikeSteeves
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Nearby HotelsSee all 9 nearby hotels
The Victor Hotel
81 reviews
4.50 miles away
Century Casino & Hotel Cripple Creek
225 reviews
5.13 miles away
McGills Hotel and Casino
78 reviews
5.15 miles away
Midnight Rose Hotel and Casino
78 reviews
5.15 miles away
Nearby RestaurantsSee all 33 nearby restaurants
Gold Camp Bakery
81 reviews
4.51 miles away
Home Cafe
165 reviews
5.17 miles away
Fortune Club
64 reviews
4.51 miles away
Cripple Creek Candy and Variety
60 reviews
5.22 miles away
Nearby AttractionsSee all 33 nearby attractions
Victor Lowell Thomas Museum
22 reviews
4.53 miles away
Victor Trading Company
10 reviews
4.51 miles away
Victor's Gold Camp Ag & Mining Museum
5 reviews
4.58 miles away
Questions & Answers
Ask a question
Shawn W
April 13, 2018|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from Lorna M | Reviewed this property |
They do close the road from time to time when weather is really bad or floods
Cassidy W
February 2, 2018|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from ErnestoandKrista | Reviewed this property |
If you google shelf road, you should be able to find it. Or try your google maps too. You definitely need a 4x4 vehicle during this time of year due to the snow and ice. If the suburban is not 4x4, you’ll have to go super... More
Renee C
March 22, 2017|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from Teresa G | Reviewed this property |
Renee, another thing: If you plan to take Shelf Road, you'll want to ask exactly how to access it from Canon City. It's not hard, it's just that there aren't any signs directing you to it for some reason! And no matter which... More
Travel Forum Posts
Tampa, FL
Dirt roads open in early June? (6 Replies)
I'm going to be in Colorado in about two weeks. I'll have an SUV, so I'm hoping to explore some of the dirt mountain roads... but I'm wondering if snow will be a problem. I'm hoping to drive from Gunnison to Pitkin, then Tincup, over to St. Elmo, then on to 285. I'm also interested in Shelf Road (north of Canon City) and Gold Camp Road. Do you think any of these would be closed by snow in a couple of weeks? And... if you have any other suggestions of good dirt roads that would be...More
May 26, 2010|
Response fromSusieLou|
Will you have your own SUV or are your renting a vehicle? If renting please read the fine print which often restricts the SUV to paved roads only. As has been discussed on this forum before you will pay dearly for every ding in the paint or glass from gravel/rocks since you not only pay for the damage but for every day it is out of operation. And since it is already rented (to you), they are sometimes in no hurry to get repairs done. There will most likely still be snow on some of the higher...More
Scenic Drive Outside of Colorado Springs (3 Replies)
I'm planning to rent a vehicle early next week in Colorado Springs and try to get out of town for the day. I'm thinking of heading to Florence, and from there on to Cripple Creek on Phantom Canyon Road, then making a loop of it by heading back to Canon City on the Shelf Road. Does this sound like a feasible route (and one worth driving)?
August 02, 2018|
Response fromTheodoreJay|
Sounds doable and try to include town of Victor near Cripple Creek which is a smaller historic venue. Lowell Thomas is from there. Before you go look up on here the various places you want to pass thru and read the reviews. For example the Shelf Road looks scenic but reviews warn you of narrow road conditions there. If you have time at least do a scenic look/stop at Royal Gorge heading into Pueblo area (before Penrose).
Roads to Cripple Creek (4 Replies)
I'll be spending some time in Colorado Springs and thought about taking a day trip to Cripple Creek. I've read about various roads to Cripple Creek like the Shelf Road and Phantom Canyon Road, but how can I determine which roads these are? If I'm looking at a map are there route numbers or at the very least which towns are at either end of these roads?
April 23, 2015|
Response fromTumbleweedandCactus|
When I lived in Colorado Springs I used to love taking the Gold Camp Road, Phantom Canyon Road, etc. up to Cripple Creek and Victor. I used to drive it easily (some of the time) in a Subaru. But, if you're not familiar with the area and you have a rental car, I would be cautious. As noted, it's against the terms of the rental car. Super scenic, but it's out there. Have fun.