hiking

views

nature trips

wildlife

forest

wild flowers

birding

dog friendly

walking

trail running

dogs on leash

lake

mountain biking

kid friendly

camping

horseback riding

river

backpacking

waterfall

snowshoeing

off road driving

rock climbing

fishing

scenic driving

wheelchair friendly

The San Juan National Forest spans more than 1.8 million acres of puclic lands near Durango in the southwestern corner of Colorado. The forest encompasses three wilderness areas: Weminuche Wilderness, South San Juan Wilderness, and Lizard Head Wilderness, two of which are alpine wilderness areas. San Juan National Forest was declared by president Theodore Roosevelt in 1905 and is now also part of the Chimney Rock National Monument. The park's terrain ranges from high-desert to alpine peaks of the San Juan Mountains. Popular highlights within the park include the San Juan Skyway, a scenic drive with excellent views, and numerous hiking trails including Ice Lake Basin Trail. Activities in the park include hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and skiing. The National Forest also offers many campsites for use, including Cayton Campground. If you want some history, take a ride on the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, a historic landmark that passes through the national forest.

This was a beautiful hike however be aware that the road (county road 7 I believe) is closed. The last 4.4 miles of driving become walking. Also the snow was very deep (up to my waist at points) so bring snowshoes. It was still beautiful but be warned that this 8 mike hike is a 17 mike hike in the winter!

snowshoeing
11 days ago

I actually went up the road to Little Giant Basin to the east. Not sure why it isn't listed as its own hike. Wonderful views, lots of cool old mining structures.

I was only able to make this in Feb b/c of the lack of snow this year. This would've been feet deep on any other year, making it largely impassable or just too dangerous to attempt.

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

Nice short trail and view of the falls. The drive to get there takes away from the review although the trail itself and surrounding area was very nice. Try to take a SUV or truck and be prepared for a longer drive to get there.

hiking
16 days ago

ATTENTION: The road to the trail head was closed when we went this past weekend (2/3/2018) so expect an extra 3 miles each way along slightly boring, flat forest road. We parked in the turnout along the highway and walked in.

Snowy and icy, but not something that would require snowshoes or traction devices. Gaiters could be nice though for some parts. Not difficult as far as elevation change goes. I found the directions a bit confusing when it said to go left at the last fork and pass the campground... the only left path at a fork was closed off by logs and we never saw an official campground. Nonetheless, the hot springs were easy to find by just heading low near that fork and walking along the river.

Lots of algae in the springs.

19 days ago

I saw beautiful nature during Autunm season! Very beautiful!

We wanted to do this trail but found a road closed sign when we came to junction close to trail. We went ahead and walked the closed road which had : ft of snow. We enjoyed the walk and the beautiful scenery. We did not make it all the way to the official trail.

24 days ago

shit was easy cuh

It was a bit tiring but me and my girlfriend rocked that hike like champs, the first lake was amazing and the views are beautiful, you don’t need much gear to get to this point but we ll definitely recommend hiking shoes and not be afraid of heights if you wanna continue the short trip to island lake, there are parts that are a bit scary for first timers.

We ll definitely go back

hiking
28 days ago

Great hike! Was very icy in some areas. would not recommend hike if you do not have good shoes and are able to do steep climbs down and up. The springs are a pretty good drop down to get to. Gorgeous views and the hot springs are beautiful. Well worth the long hike

One of my favorite hikes.

snowshoeing
1 month 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

trail running
1 month ago

Unlike the other reviewer, I did not ever see a sign that the trail was closed. The trail was relatively flat and great for trail running. The only negatives are that it isn’t particularly well marked at portions, it runs along the road, and it’s really more of a piecemeal combination of other trails. Overall, though, great for trail running or for a long but relatively easy hike.

hiking
1 month 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!

Love this spot— challenging hike, especially once you hit tree line, but well worth it!

wonderful trail to hike!

1 month ago

A must!

The view at the top is worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

The trail was covered in snow so hiking shoes would be helpful. I would love to come back and do it again in the spring!

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