Purgatory Trail

EASY 63 reviews

Purgatory Trail is a 10.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Durango, Colorado that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, birding, and horses and is best used from March until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

10.2 miles
1843 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly



horseback riding

nature trips






wild flowers




This trail is used for Camping. Heads down on Switchbacks, in to the forest. Opens up in Purgatory Flats area on Cascade Creek. A rest stop for main camp site, then from there you cam hike different trails.

22 days ago


3 months ago

Lovely- good descent in- and out - lovely views- we didn't go all the way to the campgrounds. Lots of aspens.

3 months ago

Gorgeous fall colors & panoramic views

3 months ago

We LOVED this trail! Coming from Ohio, the elevation was challenging for us. An easy Colorado trail is equivalent to a moderate to difficult trail back home. The fall colors were amazing, no picture could ever do it justice, you MUST see this place in the fall!! Quite a few people with dogs off leash, but they were all friendly and minded their owners so no issues there. I could spend all day here!

5 months ago

Loved this trail. Kid friendly (our 3.5 year old mainly rode in the carrier). Pretty views, pretty aspens. Rocky terrain, but not too bad.

5 months ago

Trail drops down 1000 ft into a valley with a beautiful stream. Walk along the stream for about a mile or two through a beautiful meadow. However, it then takes you up about 500 ft and doesn't seem to return to the water, though some cool overlooks along the way. The estimated distance was 5 miles, but the trail goes quite a ways beyond what is marked on alltrails. It was an 8 mile round trip for me via my apple watch and I didn't even go to the end of the trail. Would recommend stopping shortly after you leave the meadow. Wear pants because of the brush and bring backup bug spray depending on time of year and time of day.

5 months ago

Amazing views. Hikes through Birch tree groves. The river is spectacular and wild raspberries are your reward if you go all the way to the end of the trail (according to this map).

6 months ago

This is a wonderful trail with a little bit of everything on it (flat, dirt, rocky, step, views, trees, flowers, etc). It is definitely not "easy" so proper shoes and clothing are needed (cannot believe what I saw people wearing and no water on them). We hiked all the way to the Animas River where the Cascade Creek runs into it. There is a bridge that crosses and a handful of camp areas, some with picnic tables. More trails on the other side of the Animas River. Google maps said this was 7.4 miles roundtrip.

6 months ago

My husband and I did one overnight backpacking trip on 6-17-17. It was very hot both days, but at least we didn't need rain gear. We started at Purg flats trailhead and hiked 5.4 miles ( see Strava photo) to our campsite near the footbridge/ Animas river / cascade stop of the Durango Silverton train. We had the entire place to ourselves! The river was gorgeous and flowing with the start of mountain snowmelt. I will never forget the beauty and peace of the morning sun glistening on the Animas River ( see photo) .

6 months ago

Brought our family to hike this trail today, ages 8 to 70, It was a nice hike down. The hike up wasn't to hard, especially if you take it slow. We're not avid hikers and are a bit out of shape, and we hiked down 1.6 miles in about an hour. Oddly, it took us less time to travel back up. Things to think about if I hike this trail again is to bring more than one bottle of water, and also to bring insect repellant which is something I don't have to usually worry about much when hiking in Albuquerque.

7 months ago

Easy is a misnomer for tourists coming from low elevations. Being a "reverse hike," you descend first and then hike out. We took the trail much farther toward the Animas River hiking several hundred feet above Cascade Creek and turned around at a fabulous overlook of the rivers and Pigeon and Turret peaks in the distance. Our round trip was about 8.5 miles however. The hike up to the start point was pretty hard because we'd hiked further in than planned. Wildflowers are starting to bloom! Cascade was roaring.

7 months ago

This trail is ready to hike. Love it in the spring as well as the fall.

10 months ago

I went with my family this March. It was covered with snow, and with our feet sinking every 15 steps, the trail was much harder than the "easy" rating. However, the snowy mountains and frozen creeks were beautiful. If you have the gear for the winter hike, I highly recommend it!

Friday, December 30, 2016

A beautiful hike. It was an amazing way to spend the day. Breath taking views.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Incredible views!!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Gorgeous views .. Easy hike

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Beautiful fall mountain views lead you to an aqua oasis and much more on this easy day hike.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Great little trip to the creek. Valley views are excellent.

Monday, August 08, 2016

Gorgeous views of the mountains and a beautiful walk along the Animas river. Recommend having Off as mosquitos were numerous. My phone showed the trail as being 5.9 miles and we did not quite make it to the bridge and picnic tables. Some may find the 1000' climb back out challenging. Worth every minute!!

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

What an awesome hike! Definitely recommend this to anyone in the Durango area. Gorgeous views, and if you leave early enough you're alone on the trail.

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