Cottonwood Pass

Traffic over Cottonwood Pass between Chaffee and Gunnison counties was down this year compared to last, according to data provided by Chaffee County Road and Bridge.

The total vehicle count for 2021 was 277,339, down 6.6 percent from 2020, the first year the fully paved pass was open.

Eastbound traffic dropped from 144,939 vehicles in 2020 to 142,960 in 2021.

Westbound, a much sharper drop in numbers occurred, falling from 151,895 to 134,379, a decrease of more than 11 percent.

“The traffic counters are not monitored when the pass is closed,” said Chaffee R&B’s Anne Dwyer.

The pass closes each year on Nov. 1 and reopens around Memorial Day weekend.

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