Telluride’s remote location can make access frustrating, but once you’re in town everything is close and transportation is for the most part free.
Telluride sometimes gets a bad rep for its remote location, but what most people don’t know is the quality of public transportation once you’re there. A free – and unbelievably scenic – gondola shuffles passengers from Telluride to Mountain Village and back. There is also a free bus service in town. But really, for most trips you’ll only need your own two feet. Almost everything you could need is a short walk away.
Highway 145 is the only road access into Telluride, but it comes into town from the south and northwest. Popular routes into town are from Montrose via Ridgway along US-550 and US-62, and from Durango via Dolores on US-160 to US-184 and then US-145.
The two most used airports are the Telluride (TEX) and Montrose (MTJ) airports. Flights directly to Telluride are generally a little more expensive, but avoid the cost of extra transportation from Montrose. Great Lakes Aviation flies directly to Telluride from Denver, and US Airways Express flies directly from Phoenix. Depending on the season, Montrose has flights to and from Denver, Houston, Dallas, Newark, Chicago and Atlanta.
Budget and National have car rental services in Telluride. If you’re staying in Telluride, don’t worry about a car - you won’t need it. Renting a car is recommended you’re staying in the outskirts of Mountain Village and can’t walk to the gondola.
Telluride transportation is easy to use and you can get almost anywhere wihtout a car. Telluride and Mountain Village both have free bus services, and the gondola connecting the two towns has no charge. The gondola does shut down for maintenance in the spring and fall. There is no free shuttle from the airport, but pick-up can be arranged through several agencies for a flat rate.