Monarch Pass. File photo. Photo Credit: David Herrera.

Monarch Pass. File photo. Photo Credit: David Herrera.

The Colorado State Patrol (CSP) is investigating a fatal crash that occurred Saturday evening near the 11,312-foot summit of Monarch Pass.

According to the CSP, a trucker was traveling eastbound on U.S. Highway 50 over Monarch Pass when he failed to negotiate a left-hand turn near the 11,312-foot summit. The semi then rolled over before plunging into a steep embankment, causing fuel to spill into a nearby river. 

The 43-year-old male truck driver, who has not been identified, was not wearing a seatbelt during the time of the accident and was ejected from the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The crash happened at about 9:40 p.m. on Saturday. Speed, drugs, and alcohol are not considered to be factors in the crash.

Monarch Pass is a high mountain pass that rises to an elevation of 11,312 feet along the Continental Divide. It is located about 30 minutes outside of the mountain town of Salida and connects drivers to Gunnison. It's notorious for its cliffs and can become quite dangerous when winter weather is present.

Breanna Sneeringer writes about news, adventure, and more for OutThere Colorado as a Digital Content Producer. She is an avid adventure seeker and wildflower enthusiast. Breanna joined OutThere Colorado in September 2018.


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