Tracks Across Borders Byway


  • DesignationState Byway, Colorado and New Mexico
  • LocationCO
  • Length126 miles
Dedicated Byway Visitor Information
Tracks Across Borders Scenic and Historic Byway
Statewide Byway Partners
Colorado Department of Transportation
Downloadable Colorado Byways Guide
Tracks Across Borders Byway


The Tracks Across Borders Byway was designated in Colorado in 2015, and closely follows the historic Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad narrow gauge route. This route linked the towns of Chama, NM and Durango, CO until 1969. There are layers of history along the byway. In fact, it was named "Tracks Across Borders Byway" because of the unique, authentic journey through time, where travelers can re-trace the tracks and pathways of the past. From seasonal big game migration trails, native American footpaths, routes of 17th Century Spanish missionaries, the 18th Century Old Spanish Trail and 19th century Anglos migrating to the West, and of course the tracks of the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad. These railroad tracks supported the mining, ranching and and logging industries in the region and opened Southwest Colorado to settlers.

This Colorado and New Mexico scenic byway takes travelers on a journey across the border between two states; across two Native American Nations, the Jicarilla Apaches and Southern Utes; through breathtaking, remote countryside rich in history. The scenic drive winds past Navajo Lake State Park and through the varied communities of the present day. It features one of America's newest National Monuments, the archaeoastronomy sites of Chimney Rock National Monument.

A spectacular scenic drive, this byway offers multistate experiences traveling along the Colorado and New Mexico border between Durango, Colorado and Chama, New Mexico. Engulf yourself in Native American cultures, breathtaking countryside, treaties and technology, and varied communities of the present day. The byway’s primary feature is one of Colorado’s greatest stories, the creation and development of the state’s first, and ultimately the nation’s largest, narrow gauge railroad system.

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