Solid rock, soft forms, pure delight. | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy. It’s a low-angle and gradual climb to the first of several viewpoints of the Animas Valley, stretching away into the mountains. After another 2.5 miles, you’ll see a small carpark next to several large boulders and a sign for the Falls Creek Archeological Area. This is important wildlife habitat; the Falls Creek drainage is a migration corridor for deer and elk from the high country to winter foraging grounds in the Animas River Valley. Purgatory Trail. Watch the mountains and valleys turn gold with the changing Aspen trees. La Plata Open Space Conservancy spearheaded a successful grassroots movement to compel Congress to appropriate $800,000 of the 1.1 million needed to acquire and protect the land. Social paths spin off; stay on the ridge trail. Sue Agranoff mounts a friction pitch. No. If time is limited, build your own section hike. Church Camp Trail to Valley Fire Overview (1.0 mile) The trail leaving the four-way bears east for a short distance before curving north. Enter a forest and descend steeply to Falls Creek. Grasses are lush and diverse. The Ice Lake Fire started Monday west of Silverton. Depending on how much slickrock romping you do, you’ll be back at the Mid-Meadow Trail at about 3.0 miles. Follow the narrow single track straight down the valley. The sandstone ridge is one of Durango’s most unexpected and magical places. For some years, a dispute with the adjacent land owner put public access into question. Hidden Valley almost fell to development in 1990 when a utility company based in Salt Lake City placed the 530-acre parcel on the open market. The smooth dirt path transports the hiker through a color wheel of red earth, green trees and blue sky. On March 30, 1992, Hidden Valley became public property managed by the U.S. Forest Service. The trail tracks the west side of the meadow to avoid the wetlands and riparian habitat in its center. You'll also find some great local park options, like Bodo State Wildlife Area or If you choose to incorporate an … Seen from Animas City Mountain, the complete loop traverses the length of the open meadow in the center of this image and the sandstone ridge separating Hidden Valley from the Animas River Valley. Debra Van Winegarden/Special to the Herald. Climb from the meadowland on a sandstone ridge to the highpoint, Peak 7,385’. Soak up the scenes of Durango and surrounding mountains with the Animas Mountain Trail. FCR is a unique community of 940 acres of forests and meadows almost completely surrounded by the San Juan National Forest.

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