Explore the most popular dog friendly trails in San Juan National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great views north up Vallecito Creek and south down the lake. Lots of beautiful aspen — more cover than trail description lets on. I’d call it moderate in difficulty. Good trail quality. Not at all crowded on weekdays!

Beautiful views and the sounds of the river and my knees only barked a little- LOVED!

hiking
4 days ago

Beautiful hike. Steady slight incline until the last km. Lots of streams to get water en route if needed. Only saw one other hiker on a gorgeous day, so I wouldn't call this one heavily trafficked.

First hike in a long time went 18 mins up and back!
Hopefully a lot more posts to come

Went up the trail 5/14/2018 during a perfect sunny warm day. The spring of 2018 was extremely dry so the climb up was overall pretty easy and dry. Came across a few down trees during the climb but our Land Rover Discovery fit under them with a few inches to spare. I assume the trail isn’t cleared very often. As we approached the summit we came across some drifted snow which blocked the trail as well as a fair amount of 1-3’ rocks that had fallen on the trail so we hike the last section up to the falls. Beautiful scenery and long range views. Great trail but as you reach the summit the trail narrows however there a several places to pull off on the way up. Passed only one other truck on the climb. Had a great time, great trail.

Beautiful trail. Easy hike and easy to follow
Canyon, meadows and you are either by the river
and can easily access it or you hear the river
I did 6 miles out and back and the trail was dry as a bone

The trail is in great condition as of May 2018. A lot of mountain bikers on the trail (and a few dirt bikers), but beautiful and pretty quiet aside from that. The trail has some steady climbs and would definitely be safe to run, as the path is clear and pretty rock-free the whole way. Beautiful views, too!

Poorly maintained access road meant the total trail distance was 11.5 miles. Very lightly trafficked trail with wonderful views at the top. Definitely recommend this trail.

hiking
12 days ago

Hiked in only 2 miles, up to where you get to the fork in the trail for the beginning of the loop. It took me 1 hr 45min to get to that point. It’s a steady ascent with several places of rocky, uneven terrain. Easy to roll an ankle if you’re not careful. Keep your eye out for the view because you might miss it if you don’t!

The trail looked as if no one had been on it yet this year. It’s a more difficult hike with lots of snow, fallen trees on the path, and streams to cross. I would recommend waiting until late summer to do this hike. We barely made it 2 miles when the trail was completely lost. Lots of fresh bear tracks as well.

hiking
21 days ago

as good a hike as I've ever done. got lost for awhile and didn't care

Lots of variation in scenery on this hike and all beautiful, can’t wait to see it when the aspens have bloomed. The view from missionary ridge is one of my favorites

I actually don’t know what condition the trail is in because the road is closed. It’s mid April and there was no snow this year. The FS is on top of things as usual.

hiking
1 month ago

Gorgeous scenery, but the weather made the trail that much better. Probably in the 50’s while we were there, but there were still spots along the river with frozen waterfalls and snow that hadn’t melted yet. As City folks, the wife and I wore sneakers so it made it a little more challenging with the ice and mud. Probably should of did a little more research on the trail to know when to turn around, but who doesn’t enjoy a good mystery. We turned around at the little bridge.

Road closed to the trailhead. Have to walk in two miles on a dirt road before actual hike starts

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail. Great views. Worth mentioning that the top of the loop and majority of the trail is closed from December to April. But there are connections to other trails so you can still get a good hike in still.

off road driving
2 months ago

I have done this trail several times, I live near Chicago and drive to CA every year for business. Every year I do some trails in route and Ophir, usually my first of the season. It is a good road for me to get my off road juices flowing for the rest of the trip, it is easy, scenic & fun.

Beautiful trail with great views.

hiking
2 months ago

Awesome view at the end of the trail of the two buttes. I'm glad they are inaccessible. The big challenge was the 3 mile hike to the trail start due to the park not opening until May.

hiking
2 months ago

Minus the first half mile mudfest, once reaching the river, the scenery was spectacular. Cliffs on both sides with a small stream creating a frozen waterfall on the opposite side. Hiked this during a snowstorm which really made it memorable. I'll have to plan this hike again in the summer and have a picnic on the waters edge.

hiking
2 months ago

My first real hike in the San Juans. Gorgeous.

snowshoeing
2 months ago

Great trail and beautiful . You have great choices on the trail and great opportunities for photos. I am pretty new to hiking, and this trail was perfect. It was enough to get the exercise I needed without asking me feel defeated

snowshoeing
4 months ago

Very difficult with snowshoes, but worth the effort. I didn't see a single person out and back, just a lot of wildlife tracks. Including big kitty. Navigating is very tricky because of the snow, so I brought my GPS watch + compass and it worked out fine. Bring an Ice axe, as some of the switchbacks can be deadly if you take a fall.

Beautiful

hiking
4 months ago

This is a beautiful and fun trail. Took my daughters and filled up our phones with photos of really unique things (for these Texans anyway), like frozen waterfalls, huge cliffs & sheer rock walls, the San Juan flowing in and out of frozen sections... Very doable and easy out & back hike. Highly recommend!

wonderful trail to hike!

hiking
4 months ago

The view at the top is worth it!

hiking
4 months ago

Pretty good trail also long. But it’s my first time hiking in a while so I just scaled the mountain directly up lol but good trail.

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