Oh-My-God Road (Virginia Canyon)

Idaho Springs, Colorado (ClearCreek County)

Last Updated: 12/27/2020
3.9 / 5 ( 10 reviews )
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Status:
Open
Typically Open: Year Round
Length: 8.04 miles
Highest Elevation: 9383 feet
Duration: About 45 minutes
Shape of Trail: Straight Through
Best Direction to Travel: N/A
Nearest Town: Idaho Springs
Nearest Town w/ Services: Idaho Springs
Official Road Name: Clear Creek County Road 279
Management Agency: Clear Creek and Gilpin Counties
District:

Highlights

Highlight: Oh-My-God Road (Virginia Canyon)
Officially called Virginia Canyon Road, the Oh-my-God Road connects Idaho Springs to Central City, although the road can be run in either direction. It is a steep, winding, scenic shelf road with plenty of hairpin turns and few guardrails earning it its nickname. Built to connect these two major mining centers, Virginia Canyon Road displays many remnants of the region’s rich mining heritage. Tailing piles dot the hillsides, their red-brown dirt contrasting with the deep green of the pine forest. Perhaps the climax of this mining history is the historic ghost town of Russel Gulch. Many of the town’s largest and most significant buildings are still standing along with many residences, some of which are still occupied.

Video

Route Information

Technical Rating

( EASY )

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Waypoints

1. Virginia Canyon Trailhead (0 mi)
Turn left off of Colorado Boulevard and go east on Placer Street following the signs to Virginia Canyon.

Directions to Trailhead

Starting Point: Idaho Springs

From Denver, take I-70 west to the second Idaho Springs exit, 240. Turn right (north) on 13th Ave for three blocks, then turn right (east) on Colorado Boulevard. Continue for .2 miles until the road veers to the right, stay left on Placer St. and follow the sign to Virginia Canyon Road.

Camping

Not allowed

Trail Reviews (19)

Questions & Answers (2)

Q: Are you sure the Santa Fe mine road is private? I haven’t seen any signs that are private that lead to Arizona mine road and beyond.
–THOMAS MacDonald (01/17/2021)
–Bill Andrews (01/18/2021)
Q: Hello, With the news of some places are being opened back up today is the website updated? https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/arp/news-events/?cid=FSEPRD844558
–Marco Cristaldo (11/10/2020)
–Ryan Boudreau (11/12/2020)

Writer Information

Bill Andrews

Mapping Crew - Colorado

Bill is an off-road enthusiast with nearly 30 years of 'wheeling experience. At one time he had a streak of about 20 years of 4-wheeling at least once a month. He likes anything from easy, dirt roads to difficult trails but stops short of extreme. Over the years he has traveled over 700 different trails, mostly in Colorado and Utah. He loves finding and exploring new areas and sharing his knowledge with others. He has been the coordinator of Calvary 4-Wheelers for many years.
For individual use only, not to be shared.