Mount Evans in Denver, CO has to be probably one of the most scenic roads in the United States. Being that it is the highest paved road in North America, the view from the top is absolutely incredible. Seeing Colorado from this height would be a great trip for the whole family.
The road to the top of Mt. Evans has held the honor of being the highest road for a long time. Around the turn of the century, the cities of the area - Colorado Springs and Denver - were competing to bring out tourists from the east. When Colorado Springs completed the road to the top of Pike's Peak, it did succeed in gaining tourists - and taking them away from the Denver area. Soon, though, Denver had its own idea.
It was in 1917 that the dirt road to the top of Mt. Evans was started. Taking 10 years to complete, it was finally finished in 1927. Then, it was paved during the 1930's. Later a restaurant and souvenir shop was opened at the top, but this burned down in 1979 and it was never rebuilt. The foundation and a rock wall, however, are still in place. They make a great place to stand on and observe the surrounding valleys and nearby mountains.
Mount Evans is a total of 14, 264 feet high from sea level. The road, which is completely paved, is fourteen miles to the top. From there, you can take just a short walk of about two blocks to the peak.
On the road to the top you will see the beautiful Summit Lake. This gorgeous lake has a number of trails around it. There is also a rest area by it. In some areas, you can listen to rangers talk about certain features and give some history - including information about the 1,700-year-old bristle cone trees that are there. Echo Lake is another place to stop and enjoy the view. Fishing is permitted, too.
While on the road to the top, there certainly are many places to stop and take some excellent pictures. You may also see some of the various forms of wildlife on the mountain, which includes white mountain goats and Bighorn sheep, deer, elk, picas, marmots, and squirrels.
As you go up and when you reach the top, you will notice nearly breath-taking scenery all around. On clear days, you can see mountain peaks and valleys many miles away. You may even see a thunderstorm below in one of the valleys. Of course, you certainly do not want to forget your camera.
Another structure on top of the mountain is the Meyer-Womble Observatory, which has been there since 1996. Up until the year 2,000, this observatory had been the highest one in the world. The Denver University runs it.
There are a number of places to see while you are on Mount Evans. In order to see, them, though, you will need to make plans to do so. You can learn more at their Website. There are picnic areas, a number of campsites, and some of them are accessible (Mount Goliath Natural Area).
Mount Evans near Denver, CO is very seasonal. The road is accessible only from the end of May until the end of September. You should also be aware that there is a great temperature difference between Denver and the top of the mountain. While it may be 80 degrees in the city, it may only be 40 degrees on top - be prepared and dress accordingly.