What is the Quarry (Colorado Stone Quarries) business phone number? 970-874-6118 or 970-963-1275
Who owns the Quarry Road (County Road 3)?This is a Gunnison County public road. The right-of-way is 60 feet, 30 feet to either side of center line. While the road is owned by the County, Colorado Stone Quarries maintains it. By law, the road can be closed for various reasons (like any other public or private road). Natural hazards such as excessive avalanche danger can instigate road closures, as will blockage of the road by accidents, avalanches, or rockslides.
Is driving the road dangerous because of the mine trucks, or other drivers? If you drive with caution and memorize pull-outs on this steep, mostly one-lane road, you can drive safely. A large, heavily loaded “hill truck” hauls huge loads of marble blocks down the road. The hill truck is a semi tractor and lowboy trailer rig, it is long and wide. Encountering the hill truck on a narrow section of the road is difficult. To avoid, you can stop at the quarry office at the beginning of the road and inquire as to the location of the truck. A pilot car precedes each run of the hill truck. If you encounter the pilot car, you’ll be asked to pull aside and wait for the truck to pass. If you value your life, please do so.
If you encounter another driver, Colorado law dictates the uphill vehicle has the right-of-way. The stone trucks are excepted from this rule. In actuality, other than the stone truck, the normal procedure is for the driver with the best access to a pullout to pull over and stop. In all cases, avoid coming too close to the outside edge of the dirt road, which can collapse.
If you have a radio scanner, you can listen to the hill truck driver transmitting his location. See this blog post.
What about driving the road in winter?
Four-wheel or all-wheel drive is mandatory, and you should have experience with driving steep, snow covered roads without guardrails or other protections. The road crosses avalanche paths. Many years of constant winter use have proven the drive to be reasonably safe during moderate and low avalanche hazard. Do not drive or otherwise travel the road during high hazard.
What type of land ownership and management exists in the area? Quarry Road (CR3) is a public road owned by Gunnison County. Land beyond the road right-of-way is mostly public U.S. Forest Service, with a smattering of private parcels, some signed or otherwise indicated, some not. The bulk of the public land accessed from Quarry Road is legal Federal Wilderness. It’s important for snowmobilers to note that due to the amount of legal Wilderness as well as private land parcels, there is absolutely ZERO opportunity for snowmobiling accessible from Quarry Road. Property owners on Quarry Road will immediately report any private land trespassing or mechanized trespassing in Wilderness.
Is there public access to the famous Yule Marble Quarry? NO. The non-underground Quarry is visible from the public closure gate and a short public overlook trail. The closure gate is about 3 miles up Quarry Road. The operation is mostly underground.
Are there any beginner ski or snowshoe trails available from Quarry Road? NO, all terrain available from Quarry Road is advanced. Regarding snowshoes, please know that if you choose to use snowshoes on a trail created by skiers, you will probably ruin the trail. Skiers will not take kindly to this. If you choose to snowshoe, please make your own trail rather than parasitizing skier’s uphill tracks.