The Alpine Loop is a 65-mile historic backcountry 4X4 route which connects the small mountain communities of Ouray, Silverton, and Lake City.
You’ll find remnants of the region’s mining past across the landscape, telling the story of a bygone era in this rugged, often hostile environment. Between Engineer (12,780’) and Cinnamon (12,620’) passes, the exposed ridge road offers views for miles in all directions.
The Alpine Loop is fully accessible only during summer and the entire loop is easily an all-day event as the trip takes several hours.
Please explore responsibly by following these common sense guidelines:
- Drive only on designated routes
- View historic structures from a distance; most sites are privately owned and structures are unstable
- Help protect your public lands; sites, artifacts, and historical remains are protected by the Archaeological Resource Protection Act of 1979
- Camp and build fires 200 feet away from water and structures; carry out all garbage
- Check current fire restrictions by calling SJMA’s visitor information team at (970) 247-4874
- Be prepared for changing weather; when hiking, be off high ridges and peaks by noon and seek safe shelter at the first sound of thunder
- Check out additional Off Highway Vehicles (OHV) rules here.
For more information, visit San Juan National Forest Passes and Silverton Area Roads or call SJMA’s visitor information team at (970) 247-4874.
- CATEGORY Special Places