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Some motorists may be changing their 4th of July plans in Colorado as recent rainfall caused multiple mudslides over Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon Saturday.

As of early Sunday, one westbound lane is open to traffic on I-70 through Glenwood Canyon. All eastbound lanes remain closed at time of writing Sunday. The closure for eastbound traffic extends from Exit 87 (west Rifle) to Exit 109 (Canyon Creek).

I-70 Glenwood Canyon UPDATE – (Sun 7/4) – One WB lane is OPEN with a reduced speed limit enforced. EB lanes will remain closed for much of the day. EB travelers are urged to take the northern alt route through Steamboat via CO 131 at Wolcott or CO 9 at Silverthorne.

— Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) (@ColoradoDOT)

An alternate route for motorists is north to Steamboat Springs in order to travel around the closure in Glenwood Canyon. If motorists decide to wait out the closure, motorists must exit I-70 and are not permitted to wait on the road.

Visit Colorado Department of Transportation’s Travel Center for updates to road conditions and closures in Colorado.

I-70 Glenwood Canyon Closure, Alternate Route

Photo Courtesy CDOT via Twitter.

The previous closure points for westbound traffic were from Exit 133 (Dotsero) to Exit 116 (Glenwood Springs). This section has repeatedly closed when the National Weather Service issues a Flash Flood Advisory, Watch, or Warning and if mudslides and flooding occur. Always check the weather forecast before traveling in Colorado.

As of 5 a.m. Sunday, one westbound lane opened to traffic with a reduced speed limit in place.

Colorado Department of Transportation crews are working to clear debris from eastbound lanes, which are expected to remain closed for most of the day Sunday. Trucks are carrying hundreds of loads of debris away from the mudslide sites, CDOT officials said. But removal of the debris has been a challenge for crews because the material is wet, sloppy, and difficult to contain.

I-70 Mudslide July 3, 2021

Photo Courtesy CDOT via Twitter

I-70 Mudslide July 3, 2021

Photo Courtesy CDOT via Twitter

The mudslides are pouring from the canyon walls where the human-caused Grizzly Creek fire burned 32,631 acres. Fires result in loss of vegetation, exposure of soil to erosion, and increased water runoff that may lead to flooding, increased sediment, debris flows, and damage to critical natural and cultural resources, according to fire officials.

The transportation department issued a safety closure of I-70 through Glenwood Canyon about an hour before the mudslides occurred. When rainfall is forecast in this area, officials also close the recreation path and rest stops along the interstate for safety.

When traveling and exploring the outdoors near a burn scar in Colorado, be sure to check the weather forecast for any Flash Flood Advisories, Watches, or Warnings. One place to check is the National Weather Service. 

This content was originally published here.