5 don't-miss stops along Mount Evans scenic byway

Posted at 4:30 AM, Jun 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-09 06:30:32-04

DENVER – The highest paved road in America officially opened Thursday, just in time for the summer tourist season.

Mount Evans Highway gives drivers access to Colorado’s inspiring high mountain environment, and there are several things to see and experience if you plan on venturing up to the summit this summer.

Here are five things you shouldn’t miss on the Mount Evans Highway:

Echo Lake
At more than 10,500 feet in elevation, it’s one of the highest bodies of water in the state. Stop and fish or have a picnic while you take in the view. More info:

Echo Lake Lodge
Have a bite to eat at the restaurant or walk through the gift shop while you marvel at the nearly 100-year-old lodge. More info:

Mt. Goliath Natural Area
Mt Goliath Natural area is a great stopping spot on the Mount Evans Highway. It’s a great place to see the remarkable bristlecone pine trees, some of which are more than 1,600 years old! There’s a 1.5 mile trail. More info:

Summit Lake
Part of Denver Parks, this lake is one of the highest in all of America. It’s a great place to see mountain goats or walk a short distance and look over at Chicago Lakes below. More info:

The Summit
Of course, you want to reach the summit so you can say you’ve stood on a Colorado 14er. Hike a short distance to see the outside of the highest operating observatory in the west, the Womble Observatory, which is part of the University of Denver. More info: