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Endlich Mesa Trail To Crystal Valley City Reservoir

Basics
Location:
Northeast of Durango
Setting:
Mountainous
Length:
12 mile roundtrip
Difficulty:
Difficult
Time:
6 to 8 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
11600 feet
Elevation Change:
1100 feet
Season:
Summer - Fall

Description

Much of this trail is on high mesas above or just below tree line. Water is sometimes scarce. The trail climbs and descends often, with spectacular views in good weather. As with all high-altitude areas, storms can move in rapidly, bringing severe wind, lightning, rain, snow, or hail at any time of year. Plan accordingly.

The Endlich Mesa Trail passes several old mines. The alpine meadows are full of blooming wildflowers in late July and in August. This area provides excellent views and photographic possibilities.

Fishing Considerations:

Between Lemon and City Reservoir brown, brook, rainbow and cutthroat trout are found. Most of these wild fish are in the 6-to-10-inch range, with larger trout in the more difficult to reach pools. Above City Reservoir, the cutthroats replace the brown trout. The fish in the upper area of the Florida are all small. No special regulations are in effect. Little Lake, Castilleja Lakes, Marie Lake, and City Reservoir are rated good for cutthroat. Please check the fishing regulations regarding limits, allowable lures, and restrictions on certain lakes, rivers, etc.

Details

Location:
Northeast of Durango
Setting:
Mountainous
Length:
12 mile roundtrip
Difficulty:
Difficult
Time:
6 to 8 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
11600
Elevation Change:
1100
Season:
Summer - Fall
Useful Map(s):
USGS Quads: Lemon Reservoir, Vallecito Reservoir

Map + Directions

Basic Directions

Travel east from Durango on Florida Road (CR #240) to the junction with CR #243, which goes to Lemon Reservoir. Continue north past the reservoir for 5.5 miles until you reach FS#597, a logging road. Take the logging road 9.5 miles to its end at the trailhead. This road is very rough but does not require 4WD.


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