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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > San Juan National Forest > Columbine Ranger District

Quick Facts

Animas Overlook Trail

Average Time: 1 Hour Hiking
Beginning Elevation: 8,860 Feet (2761.8 Meters)
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation Gain: 140 Feet (43.6 Meters)
Ending Elevation: 9,000 Feet (2805.5 Meters)
Handicapped Accessible: Yes Handicapped accessible toilets and picnic facilities.
Length, One-way: 3,600 Feet (1122.2 Meters)
Usage: Moderate
USGS Maps: Durango West

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

The trailhead starts on the east end of the parking lot where directions are posted. The self-guided interpretive loop trail is marked with signs along the way pointing out geology, history, flora and fauna. The trail takes you through ponderosa pine and Gambel oak forests, offering overlooks with great views of the Animas Valley and Needles Mountains. The gravel trail has easy grades for wheelchair use. Also provided are handicapped accessible toilets and picnic facilities with barrier-free benches, tables and fire grills.

Directions from Durango, Colorado: Turn west off Main Avenue in Durango onto 25th Street. Go 3 miles (keeping to the left at the "Y" to stay on County Road 204) until you get to the National Forest Boundary where the pavement ends. Continue on Junction Creek Road (Forest Road 543) to Milepost 7. Turn right into a paved parking lot.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Accessible: May through October .

Current Conditions & Trip Reports
Open. Wheelchair accessable. Updated: 2003-09-03 12:15:00.0

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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Hiking & Walking Self-guided interpretive loop
ICON Viewing Interpretive Signs History, geology, flora and fauna
ICON Viewing Scenery Great views of the Animas Valley and Needles Mountains

Related Activities
Animas Overlook Interpretive Site - A leisurely walk will take you along an interpretive trail to nine information signs, with topics including history, geology, wildlife, archaeology, ecology, and forest management.

Animas River - The upper portion of the Animas River is Federally managed. Some segments are runnable with kayaks and cata rafts, other segments are unrunnable at all times or during certain months.

Animas River Trail - The trail follows the riverbank within the steep and rocky canyon walls and is an alternative to taking the train to get to Chicago Basin. The trail follows the river banks for its entire distance offering fishing possibilities.

Junction Creek Campground - Junction Creek Campground is a good base camp for Durango activities. The campground is on a south-facing hillside a small distance above Junction Creek.

More Information

Visitor Information:

Durango Area Chamber Resort Association, 111 South Camino Del Rio , Durango, CO, 81301, Phone: 800-463-8726, Fax: 970-385-7884, durango@frontier.net


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