Peak to Peak Highway which has been designated as a Scenic Byway starts as Colorado highway 7 in the city of Estes Park. It passes both Twin Sisters and Lily Mountain before it turns south pas the Allenspark on the CO Highway 72 where it proceeds to Nederland and keeps going south on Colorado Highway 119 through Blackhawk, Clear Creek Canyon and Interstate 70. There are several gold mines on highways 72 and 119 that visitors can stop at for a small fee to participate in mining.
Visitors can see the scrap rock that has been dumped from the mines on the mountains' side from Ward which is past the town of Blackhawk. The public can pan for gold in creeks at a couple of old mines along the way. The drive down Peak to Peak Scenic Highway takes people past beautiful sites. There are a number of aspen stands. When traveling to Interstate -70 from Estes Park the scenic highway is approximately a three hour drive.
The Scenic Highway provides a view of the Continental Divide and a number of other attractions. These attractions include the gaming districts of Black Hawk/Central City, Rocky Mountain National Park and the Golden Gate Canyon State Park. The road begins in Black Hawk, Colorado which can be found in Gilpin County and continues to Estes Park, Colorado.
There are a number of Casinos found in Black Hawk and it is where Peak to Peak Scenic Highway starts on state rt. 119. The Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests, Eldora Ski Resort and the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area are all among the sites that you will pass when driving down the Peak to Peak Scenic Highway. It is the oldest scenic route in Colorado that was formed during 1918.
Along the way the road passes the Missouri Lake and the access roads for the Golden Gate Canyon State Park which means that those taking the byway can take a detour to enjoy these sights if they would like a break from the drive. Estes Park is in Larimer County on Big Thompson River. It is where highway ends.
The Peak to Peak Scenic Byway is fifty-five miles long providing views of the mountain tops covered in snow on the Continental Divide. The mining communities along the way give visitors the chance to see the architecture in the area that dates as far back as the 1800's. Black Hawk and Central City are among the historic communities on the way. Anyone visiting the state of Colorado should make it a point to travel to Blackhawk and make the drive into Estes Park using the Peak to Peak Scenic Byway.
Those traveling the Peak to Peak Scenic Byway should keep the historical sites along the way in mind. Anyone traveling this historic highway is sure to want to full effect by following it to the historical sites and area attractions such as the state parks that line the way just off of the main route. Travelers should plan to spend a few additional hours on the byway.