DENVER - Multiple crashes, closures and stuck motorists kicked off what is expected to be a heavy-traffic weekend along Interstate 70 through the mountains.
The eastbound lanes of I-70 at Silverthorne were shut down as were the westbound lanes of Vail Pass after multiple crashes Friday night.
The Colorado Department of Transportation reported the first closure around 5:45 p.m. The Silverthorne closure reopened around 8:30 p.m.
The westbound lanes on Vail Pass were reopened around 10 p.m. CDOT said Friday travelers should expect long delays.
The closures caused massive traffic backups in the area.
CDOT was reporting more than two-hour delays for westbound I-70 from Bakerville to the Eisenhower Tunnel.
Snow and icy conditions were also slowing heavy ski traffic.
CDOT tweeted Friday that it was seeing "a lot of accidents involving bald tires." It urges drivers to be prepared for mountain driving.
Last Sunday, hundreds of motorists were stranded in ski traffic. CDOT blamed drivers with "in state plates" of being unprepared for mountain conditions.
With Valentine's Day and the long Presidents' Day weekend, the next few days will be busy along highways in the high country.
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