Fastest way to Telluride from Colorado Springs:
Take Highway 115 out (South Nevada) to Highway 50 over Monarch pass to Montrose. Turn left on highway 550 (Townsend), and when you get to Ridgway turn right onto highway 162. Turn left onto 145 and into Telluride.
Scenic return trip:
Go back part way on highway 50 until you get to 285 and take that all the way to Denver. Then take 25 back down to Colorado Springs.
:wave Highway 50 would be your obvious choice for the quickest route. The drive over Monarch pass and through the Gunnison canyon is one of the prettiest around.
Highway 24 up through Divide and into the Shadow of Mt princeton is true rocky mountain splendor.
The southern route branches off at Walsenburg where my family used to own the Rambler dealer in better days. The drive over La Veta pass, through the San louis valley, and up over Wolf creek pass is spectacular. I also happen to think that lizard head is one of the most scenic and easy to drive passes in the state. That trip is considerably longer and should probably be saved for your post bluegrass decompression.
Whatever route you choose you’ll be titillated by the beautiful scenery.
I live in COS and thought I would add a some insight into the drive. The drive from COS to T- Ride is about 6 plus hours going by way of Canon City, Gunnison to Montrose and then on to T-Ride. The long drive back will take more like 8 to 12 hours by way of Durango. Don’t underestimate how tired you will be on Monday. I know I wouldn’t be in the frame of mind for extra driving. On the way to T-Ride be sure to make a pit stops in Canon City and in Salida as there are not many places to stop between Canon City and Salida. After Salida is Monarch Pass and there are no place to stop until Gunnison. There is one “general store” after the pass but expect to buy something before you use the restoom. Since you are apparenlty not familiar with the drive always keep a lookout of wildlife. We have had a few near misses passing through the canyons and on Monarch Pass. We always get gas in Montrose as it will be “cheaper” than in T-Ride and would be good place to get other supplies. After Montrose travel through Ridgway. Again we have had near misses with deer running out in front of us just before Ridgway by the resevoir/campground.
Enjoy the drive it is a beautiful way to start the weekend. We always listen to music and begin to decompress.