Pagosa Springs Journals

A Week in GOD'S Country

An October 2000 trip to Pagosa Springs by willow

William Lake Photo, Pagosa Springs, Colorado More Photos
Quote: East of Durango, as the mountains stretch into the San Luis Valley in south central Colorado, lies the town of Pagosa Springs. Named after the Ute word "pagosah" interpreted to mean "healing waters" the town is home to soothing hot springs long believed to possess healing powers.

A Week in GOD'S Country

Overview

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Pagosa Springs offers a wide variety of accommodations, entertainment and activity options. It serves as the gateway to the vast eastern end of the San Juan Mountains. So there is plenty of unspoiled nature to explore. The quiet solitude of this secluded mountain town offers peace and contentment. Quiet doesn't preclude a variety of recreational opportunities such as hunting, fishing, backpacking and horseback riding.Quick Tips: Best Way To Get Around: For enjoyment of the area you will need a car. The roads are in good shape. A four wheel drive vehicle may be desired to explore secluded areas, higher elevations. A four wheel drive might be even more necessary if you plan a w...Read More
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The four of us stayed in a Peregrine AB unit and had lots of space for privacy. This 1465 sq. ft. two-bedroom condo was designed to sleep 8. There is a king bed in each master bedroom and a murphy bed in each living area. The units are designed with a locking door between and separate kitchen and living areas. Two groups of 4 people could stay in each unit. The resort is very clean and well furnished. The decor is tasteful and homelike. The kitchen is supplied with standard cookware, small appliances, utensils, dishes, etc. They even supply paper towels, coffee filters and soap! Bed and bath linens are provided. Fresh towels are sheets are available for the asking. Housekeeping is provide...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 21, 2000

Fairfield Pagosa
538 VILLAGE DRIVE
Pagosa Springs, Colorado 81157
970-731-8040

Hogs Breath Saloon

Restaurant | "Hog's Breath Saloon"

Quote:
We ate some of the best babyback ribs I have ever greased my face with. The salad cart was fresh and offered a good but not overwhelming variety of healthy fair. The waitress was friendly; she gave us directions and made suggestions for scenic areas to visit.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 21, 2000

Hogs Breath Saloon
157 Navajo Trail Drive
Pagosa Springs, Colorado 81147
(970) 731-2626

Ancient Pueblo Indian Ruins

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Attraction | "Ancient Pueblo Indian Ruins"

Ancient Pueblo Indian Ruins Photo, Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Quote:
If you enjoy exploring ancient ruins in remote places this is the tour for you. An air of mystery and quiet prevails as you make your way through the ruins, stepping carefully along the rocky ledges. You will see, hold and examine pottery shards, tiny corn cobs, bone and stone tools which were left here by the ancients 1000 years ago. Your Indian guide will share knowledge of this ancient civilization.

The most spectacular village requires climbing a 30 ft. ladder and creeping along a narrow rock ledge halfway up the canyon wall. It's called Eagle's Nest for good reason.

You'll leave the canyon in awe and appreciation for America's Indian heritage.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 21, 2000

Ancient Pueblo Indian Ruins
Mountain Ute Indian Reservation
Pagosa Springs, Colorado
(970) 749-1452

Chimney Rock Archaeological Area

Attraction | "Chimney Rock Pinnacles"

Chimney Rock Archaeological Area Photo, Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Quote:
Eighteen miles west of Pagosa Springs on Hwy. 160, the descending elevation takes you through warmer juniper or pinon pine forests. This route offers an excellent view of Chimney Rock. The site was closed during our fall visit, though we looked forward to visiting the archaeological ruins. Chimney Rock, which in reality is a pair of sand stone spires reaching skyward, holds spiritual significance for the Southwestern Indian population. Chimney Rock has been a spiritual mecca for Native Americans since Pre-Columbian times.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 19, 2000

Chimney Rock Archaeological Area
3179 Highway 151
Pagosa Springs, Colorado 81121
(970) 883-5359

Astraddle A Saddle

Attraction

Astraddle A Saddle Photo, Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Quote:
Astraddle A Saddle is located 4 miles west of Pagosa Springs off Hwy 160. We chose a two hour trail ride, there were six in our group. The scenery was simply breathtaking. Fortunately our vacation coincided with the seasonal high color of the Aspens. Cost $15 per rider. The horses were very gentle and required very little guidance.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 28, 2000

Astraddle A Saddle
P.O. Box 1216
Pagosa Springs, Colorado 81147
(970) 731-8060

Wolf Creek Pass

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Story/Tip

Highway 160 Photo, Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Quote:
U.S. 160 north of Pagosa Springs offers spectacular mountain scenery. The elevation climbs 900 feet as you ride from ponderosa pine through open grassy meadows along the San Juan River to aspen and then spruce-fir stands. The aspen were golden yellow and the higher elevations were blanketed in 14 inches of snow when we visited in October. At mile marker 15, pull over and take the trail to Treasure Falls, rushing hundreds of feet toward you. Though the days temperature was in the low 60s, the falls were rimmed with ice and snow. The San Juan overlook is located 2 miles further north. The overlook offers a breathtaking view of the San Juan River Valley. The many stands of Aspen refl...Read More

Williams Lake Reservoir

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Story/Tip

William Lake Photo, Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Quote:
The lake is located 23 miles north of Pagosa Springs on Piedra Road. This all-weather road winds through first residential areas then private ranches before crossing the Piedra River and reaching the 343 acre reservoir. We were told at our resort that 3 pairs of golden eagles fish the lake in early morning and late afternoon. We did not see the eagles, only an angry hawk scolded us from above. The trip was not wasted. The view of this pristine blue lake set against the backdrop of the snow-capped mountains was well worth the trip. Our picnic meal tasted like gourmet fair in the still mountain coolness. We were sorry to see the sun go down and the view no longer visible. The return trip took lo...Read More
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The gorgeous mountain scenery and deep, rugged Animas Canyon will astound you as the train makes its climb to Silverton (elev. 9300 ft.) The 45 mile trip takes 3.5 hrs.

From the very beginning in the 1880's the line was promoted as a scenic route for passenger service, although the line was constructed primarily to haul mine ore both gold and silver from the San Juan Mountains.

The locomotives are vintage 1923-25 and maintained in mint condition.
Each train car has bathrooms.
Concessions are available.
Movie buffs will appreciate the long list of movies in which the train has appeared.