Hesperus Pass

Hesperus Pass - La Plata County - Colorado - 8,019 feet
La Plata River to west. Wildcat Canyon to east.

Southwest of Durango on CR-125.
gravel - street bike or dual sport

#146 - photos by Randy Bishop, 7/13/2013

At the nearby town of Hesperus.

At the summit, looking east.

At the summit, looking west.

At the summit, looking west toward Hesperus.

A map.

At the summit.

photos by Curtis Kohl, 6/21/2012

At the summit, looking west.

At the summit, looking east.

Google Maps, with summit at "B".

Google Maps

Google Earth

photos by Karst Postma, 5/14/2012

Looking west.

Looking east.

Looking south.

At the site.

Google Maps. Photos taken at "D".

Google Earth

Karst and the guys went exactly to 37 13 21N 107 58 34W, the point listed on the spreadsheet. But it looks like those coordinates were in error.

Helmuth's states, "Hesperus Pass is passenger-car-accessible via county road #125...Locals remember when the road over the pass was the highway route of US-160. The name Hesperus Hill was used to describe the pass. Now US-160 follows a new path across the divide north of this older pass."

Wesley M. Howe, in his book "From Basin to Peak: An Explorer's Companion to the Colorado - New Mexico San Juan Basin", states, "The route of U.S. 160 went this way to get from Durango to Hesperus until a new highway took a more direct route in the early 1950s. The pass is the transition between the La Plata River drainage and Wildcat Canyon. The Rio Grande Southern Railroad crossed the divide to the north of the highway. Hesperus Pass (elev. 8,019 feet) is west from Durango two miles on U.S. 160, then south six miles on La Plata 141 (Wildcat Canyon Road) and La Plata 125."

(Every once in a while we discover things like this when exploring some of the less well-known passes.)

Recognized in "The Passes of Colorado, An Encylopedia of Watershed Divides" by Ed Helmuth & Gloria Helmuth.
Is not included in United States Board on Geographic Names.

Other geographic features in the area, from United States Board on Geographic Names:
Feature Name ID Class County State Latitude Longitude Ele(ft) Map BGN Date Entry Date
Hesperus Mountain 179988 Summit Montezuma CO 372642N 1080520W 13212 La Plata 01-JAN-1887 13-OCT-1978
Hesperus 179135 Populated Place La Plata CO 371710N 1080222W 8090 Hesperus - 13-OCT-1978

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2012-15 Randy Bishop
Last modified: January 2, 2015