In case you missed it last week, a truck driver using GPS during an I-70 road closure in Glenwood Canyon tried to navigate his 18-wheeler over Gunnison County Road 3 — which so happens to be the “steep, rocky, four-wheel-drive route” that is used to get to Crystal Mill, the famed Colorado landmark, according to an article Friday in the Aspen Daily News.
The truck was on State Highway 133, which goes from Hotchkiss to Carbondale, when the driver turned on CR 3 heading to the town of Marble. From there, it attempted a road along the Crystal River that is only used by four-wheel-drive vehicles. CR 3 eventually passes the historic, abandoned Crystal Mill before arriving in the tiny town of Crystal, high in the backcountry.
The big rig first got stuck on Wednesday and “remained jack-knifed across the popular route … until tow trucks extracted it on Friday, Aug. 18, around noon,” the Aspen Daily News reported. “Over the 40-hour period, nobody could get by except pedestrians, bicycles and dirt bikes.”
As incredulous as the situation sounds, it’s not the first time — and probably won’t be the last, considering how frequently Glenwood Canyon is closed these days due to rock or mudslides — a truck has been stuck on a high mountain road that was meant for SUVs.
In 2020, a 30-foot box truck got stuck at nearly 13,000 feet while trying to negotiate the Alpine Loop, which connects Silverton and Lake City, according to the Durango Herald.
“All-wheel drive or 4×4 is a must, and a higher-clearance vehicle is recommended,” for this dirt road, according to Colorado.com.
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