Marshall Pass via Poncha Creek
Poncha Creek to Marshall Pass provides beautiful scenery, especially in the fall when the aspens change colors. There are options for camping and fishing. Unlicensed vehicles are not allowed on county roads, so must stage at the parking areas near Shirley Townsite or Marshall Pass. This road is closed March 1 to May 1.
In the 1920s, the town of Shirley was a transfer point for silver, zinc, lead and copper ores that arrived via aerial tram from the Rawley Mine in Bonanza, located over the mountains to the south. From Shirley, the ore was loaded onto railcars of the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad and hauled over Marshall Pass to smelters in Leadville. The main road over Marshall Pass follows the old railroad grade. Shirley died in 1930 when the Rawley Mine shut down.