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62 Mountain Passes to explore in United States

United States

Third largest and third most populous country in the world. Size-wise, it is almost as large as the continent of Europe.

Anthracite Pass
Anthracite PassAnthracite Pass, Colorado 81623, USA

A majestic high altitude pass, which features excellent views of Treasure Mountain and Marble Peak with Daly Peak in the distance. It is one of the iconic location which is covered with trees and also there are opportunities to explore the wildlife habitat too.

Apache Pass
Apache PassApache Pass, Arizona 85643, USA

Apache Pass is a historic mountain pass in the U.S. state of Arizona between the Dos Cabezas Mountains and Chiricahua Mountains at an elevation of 5,110 feet. It is approximately 20 miles east-southeast of Willcox, Arizona, in Cochise County.

Arapaho Pass
Arapaho PassArapaho Pass, Colorado 80466, USA

Arapaho Pass is 11,906 feet above sea level, but a manageable 1,800 feet above the trailhead. Meander to the north side of the ridge to look down on Caribou Lake. Due west is Lake Dorothy. Keep an eye out for backcountry skiers taking runs off Mount Neva. Follow the same route back to the trailhead. It is also one of the iconic location which offers beautiful views of this area.

Berthoud Pass
Berthoud PassBerthoud Pass, Colorado 80438, USA

Berthoud Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.446m above the sea level, located in Clear Creek County. The pass is located west of Denver, and provides a high route between upper Clear Creek Canyon to the upper valley of the Fraser River in Middle Park to the north. The pass traverses the continental divide at the Front Range, on the border between Clear Creek County and Grand County. The pass is a destination for local backcountry skiers, snowboarders, and snowshoers.

Boulder-Grand Pass
Boulder-Grand PassBoulder-Grand Pass, Colorado 80510, USA

Boulder-Grand Pass is located 7.25 miles from Wild Basin Trailhead in Rocky Mountain National Park. It spans a broad saddle along the Continental Divide between Tanima Peak and Pilot Mountain. Boulder-Grand takes you to 12000’, within reach of two summits to the north, Mount Alice and Pilot Mountain, and three to the south, Tanima Peak, The Cleaver and Isolation Peak.

Buchanan Pass
Buchanan PassBuchanan Pass, Colorado 80446, USA

Buchanan Pass is a mountain pass located in the Rocky Mountains of north-central Colorado in the United States. The pass is toward the northern end of the Indian Peaks of the Front Range on the Grand-Boulder county line, between the Buchanan Creek drainage to the west and the Middle St. The pass is in the Indian Peaks Wilderness of the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and is the easternmost mountain pass on the continental divide.

Buffalo Pass
Buffalo PassBuffalo Pass, Arizona 86544, USA

Buffalo Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2.610m (8,562ft) above the sea level, located in the Navajo Nation of Apache County, in northeast Arizona, in USA. It’s called Indian Route 13. It’s a great little curvy road with twists and turns in a scenic panorama of sandstone cliffs and tall ponderosa pines.

Cajon Pass
Cajon PassCajon Pass, California 92371, USA

Cajon Pass is a mountain pass between the San Bernardino Mountains to the east and the San Gabriel Mountains to the west in Southern California. The Pacific Crest Trail goes directly through Cajon Pass, and during the hiking season up to several thousand transient hikers will pass through this area after walking one of the hottest, driest, and most grueling sections of desert on the trail.

Carson Pass
Carson PassCarson Pass, California, USA

Carson Pass is located on the south side of Highway 88 at Carson Pass 60 miles east of Jackson in Alpine County. The historic pass was a point on the Carson Trail during the California Gold Rush and was used for American Civil War shipping to California until the completion of the First Transcontinental Railroad. The Pacific Crest Trail traverses the Carson Pass summit, which has California Historical Landmark #315 at CA 88 postmile 6.09 where Kit Carson carved his name into a tree.

Carson Pass Sno-Park
Carson Pass Sno-ParkKirkwood, CA 95646, USA

The Carson Pass Sno-Park is located near Caples Lake on the south side of Highway 88. It is popular with hikers throughout most of the year, and the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail, Tahoe-Yosemite Trail, and the Emigrant Summit Trail have access points at Carson Pass. Several high-elevation lakes can be accessed from Carson Pass.

Cinnamon Pass
Cinnamon PassCinnamon Pass, Colorado 81235, USA

Cinnamon Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.853m above the sea level, located in San Juan County, in the U.S. state of Colorado. It is a 19.2 mile 4WD route between Silverton and Lake City Colorado and is part of the well known Alpine Loop. This is one of Colorado's most scenic offroad drives and this long climb on narrowing shelf road is primarily used for off road driving and it’s accessible from May until October.

Cordova Pass
Cordova PassCordova Pass, Colorado 81020, USA

Cordova Pass is a 11,260 foot mountain pass just outside of the Spanish Peaks Wilderness. It is reached via the Apishapa Road, a leg of the Scenic Highway of Legends. Most of the time, the pass may be traversed by passenger vehicles, although it is not accessible from mid-November to late May.There are vault toilets, several picnic tables and a couple of primitive campsites in the summit area. This is a "Fee Area".

Cottonwood Pass
Cottonwood PassCottonwood Pass, Colorado 81211, USA

A high mountain pass on the Continental Divide of the Americas in the Sawatch Range of Colorado. It rises to the west out of Buena Vista, heading over the Continental Divide. It’s an amazing mountain pass to see colorful fall aspen groves. It connects with Almont near Crested Butte, making it an excellent summer trip. The road closes in winter due to heavy snowfall, usually sometime in October.

Cucharas Pass
Cucharas PassCucharas Pass, Colorado 81055, USA

Cucharas Pass is a high mountain pass located on the boundary of Huerfano and Las Animas counties, in south central Colorado in the United States. The road winds its way through Cuchara, where you will begin to see the old volcanic dykes of Stonewall, Colorado. The Cuchara river will accompany you through most of your Northern journey. The region gets its name from the spoon-like shape of the valley, with "cuchara" being the Spanish word for "spoon."

Cumberland Pass
Cumberland PassCumberland Pass, Colorado 81210, USA

Cumberland Pass is a high mountain pass in the Sawatch Range of the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. The pass is traversed by Forest Road 765 and can be accessed from the towns of Tincup to the north and Pitkin to the south. The Cumberland Pass road was built in 1882, connecting the mining towns of Tin Cup to the north and Pitkin to the south. Evidence of past and present human activities can be found at Cumberland Pass.

Douglas Pass
Douglas PassDouglas Pass, Colorado 81630, USA

Douglas Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2.526m above the sea level. It is not an especially high summit relative to other Colorado passes, and the road, though reasonably steep on the south side, has no tight spots and only a few switchbacks.The summit gives an unusual view of the northeast face of the La Sal Mountains, 76 miles away in Utah.

Ebbetts Pass
Ebbetts PassEbbetts Pass, California, USA

The Ebbetts Pass National Scenic Byway is one of only seven nationally designated byways in California and 151 in the nation.Ebbetts is the eastern of two passes in the area traversed by State Route 4. The western pass is the Pacific Grade Summit. The pass is registered as a California Historical Landmark. The Pacific Crest Trail, a 2,650-mile long National Scenic Trail crosses State Route 4 at Ebbetts Pass.

Engineer Pass
Engineer PassEngineer Pass, Colorado 81235, USA

Engineer Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.901m above the sea level, in the U.S. state of Colorado.Generally considered a moderately challenging route, it takes an average of 8 h 59 min to complete. This is a popular trail for birding, fishing, and off-road driving, but you can still enjoy some solitude during quieter times of day.

Fremont Pass
Fremont PassFremont Pass, Colorado 80461, USA

Fremont Pass is one of the highest, most scenic roads in Colorado, and is named after famed American west explorer John C. Frémont.It forms the continental divide on the border between Lake County and Summit County. The pass is named for John C. Frémont, an explorer of the American West who discovered the pass. Despite being one of the highest mountain passes in the state, the only steep part is the switchback on the final ascent toward the Climax mine on the south side.

Guanella Pass
Guanella PassGuanella Pass, Colorado 80435, USA

The Guanella Pass Scenic Byway is a great introduction to Colorado's Rocky Mountains.This road, while a detour from Hwy. 285, provides a perfect snapshot of the Rocky Mountain ecosystem in only 22 short miles. At the summit of the pass, hiking trails lead east to Mount Bierstadt among other places.The road is no longer maintained in the winter and expect closure after the first heavy snow in the winter.

Map of Mountain Passes to explore in United States