First Fork Trail
Photo Courtesy of Missy Thompson
Part of the Missionary Ridge trails system.
First Fork Trail is a moderate 3.5-mile trail that can be accessed from Missionary Ridge Trail or Red Creek Trail. This trail is a popular downhill bike descent; it descends 1,650 feet from Missionary Ridge Trail to the parking area at First Fork/Red Creek. The Missionary Ridge trail network is an unknown gem even to most locals. There are multiple trailheads that offer a selection of generally snow-free, three-season hikes in the low country. In spring, aspen corridors are carpeted with purple larkspur and sunny dandelion. Spears of lupine and alpine rose fill green glades with sublime fragrance. Look out from the well-earned ridgetop to the La Plata range and the San Juan Mountains. Great review in The Durango Herald.
Map & Directions
Map Coordinates: 37.363574, -107.768154
Where's the Trailhead?
dIRECTIONS TO TRAILHEAD
Drive 4.3 miles on CR 240 east from its junction with East Animas Road, to the first entrance of Durango Hills subdivision. Turn left on paved CR 249 and set your odometer to 0.0. At 0.3 miles, turn left on Nusbaum. At 1.0 miles, go straight on Stagecoach and FS 071. At miles 2.0, turn left and downhill, passing a spur to the right. Follow FS 071 signs to the top. At 2.2 miles, turn right on Silver Mesa Drive, then continue straight on Silver Mesa at 2.6. At 3.0, you’ve reached the trailhead.
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