Take My Trip.com Road Trip Homepage

TripsMap-Find Attractions Listed By StateFeature Articles - In DepthHotel Helper - Find Your Hotel And A Great DealPhoto Gallery - Fine Travel Photography by Daniel Woodrum

Phantom Canyon Road
Cañon City to Cripple Creek, Colorado

At Cañon City, you have your choice of three scenic highways--all of which lead to the mining towns of Cripple Creek and Victor.  High Park, Shelf, and Phantom Canyon Roads are all part of the Gold Belt Tour Scenic and Historic Byway.  The easiest to drive is High Park Road, which begins as CO Rte. 9 west of Cañon City.  Shelf Road (named for the "shelf" that carries the narrow, one-lane road along the mountainside) begins along CO Rte. 115 east of Cañon City.  Finally, Phantom Canyon Road (my choice) turns off of US Hwy. 50 about 8 miles east of Cañon City.

Phantom Canyon Road follows the old path of the Florence and Cripple Creek railroad, which, in 1894, connected the mining towns of Victor and Cripple Creek with the outside world.

phantom canyon road, canon city to cripple creek colorado

The road climbs gently the entire way, starting off in this small canyon.

tunnel, phantom canyon road, canon city to cripple creek colorado

The route passes through two tunnels, blasted through solid rock...

steel bridge, phantom canyon road

...and over three bridges.  The only original railroad bridge that remains is the Steel Bridge, which is roughly at the halfway point.

steel bridge, phantom canyon road

The bridge has recently been restored.  You'll find interpretive signs and a parking area at the south side.

townsite of glenbrook, phantom canyon road

As you slowly climb through Phantom Canyon into Cripple Creek, road signs mark the locations of old town sites, that sprung up along the route.  Almost nothing remains at any of these town sites, except of course, the occasional herd of cattle.


phantom canyon road near victor colorado

As you approach Victor, the road flattens out and widens, passing through rolling farmland.

ghost shack, phantom canyon road

Here you will find a few old barns and ghost-shacks, all on private property.

Phantom Canyon Road ends just outside Victor.  Cripple Creek is just a few miles up the road.  Use CO Rte. 67 to take you through Cripple Creek, and on to US 24 (which will then lead to Manitou Springs and Colorado Springs).  Because of the foul weather, I decided I would return the next day to explore these fascinating old towns.  If you'd like to skip ahead, click here.

While I decided to drive on to Manitou Springs to spend the night, it probably would have been better to stay at one of Cripple Creek's hotel/casinos.  This would have saved me the extra drive to and from Manitou Springs (which was a waste of time, thanks to the rainy weather).

<< Previous
Colorado Hotels
Colorado Attractions Map
Request Free Brochures on Colorado
Next >>

Bookmark and Share

Gold Camp Road

Victor, Colorado

Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs

Share your thoughts!

In order to better manage your comments, TakeMyTrip now uses Facebook to allow you to leave comments for other visitors to this page, and your friends.  Please use the form above (you might need to log into your Facebook account first).  If you have a message specifically meant for the website creator, send an email to feedback takemytrip.com.  And don't forget to LIKE TakeMyTrip.com's Facebook page!



Lara writes: "I have been here before and this place remains my number one SITE to camp and have a nice long walk or hike on this road. Very very spiritual place and full of positive energy from Native Americans. One site through Phantom Canyon, if you are lucky you can find it, has the remains of a Native American."

Stan Philbrick writes: "I am now 85 yrs old (2008) & have been around a bit in my life. I have thought for many years that the Phantom Canyon Road is my all-time favorite drive. I would love to drive it one more time, but I'm in Thailand now. I love it here also & have spent nearly 8 years here, on & off beginning in 1961."

Day 7
<< Previous | Next >>

Follow TakeMyTrip on

Budget Host Royal Gorge Inn Canon City
80.99 - 99.99

Super 8 Motel - Canon City
69.89 - 94.89

Pueblo-Days Inn
58.00 - 75.00

Clarion Inn Pueblo

69.96 - 72.15

Howard Johnson Colorado Springs
64.01 - 69.01

117.00 - 154.00


View this website's best photos in the Gallery


Colorado Travel
Photography Tours
Family Vacations
Hiking & Trekking Pkgs.

Road Trip Interactive USA Map

Colorado Canon City Phantom Canyon Road Cripple Creek Gold Belt Tour Byway Steel Bridge

View this website's best photos in the Gallery


Colorado Travel
Photography Tours
Family Vacations
Hiking & Trekking Pkgs.

Road Trip Interactive USA Map






I welcome your feedback.  Your thoughts will make this a better website. Click Here to Contact Me.
All photographs on this website may be available for purchase.  Many are featured in the Gallery.
Click here for information on ordering prints.

Road Trip Index | Attractions By State: AL - AZ - CA - CO - FL - GA - ID - IL - MT - NC - NM - NV - OH - OR - PA - SC - TN - TX - UT - VA - WA - WV
Recommended Reading - Bookstore | Search This Site | Support This Site | How to Use This Site | About Me | Links | Legal Stuff | Sitemap

All content and photographs © 2007 TakeMyTrip.com / Daniel Woodrum