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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > San Juan National Forest > Mancos-Dolores Ranger District

Quick Facts

West Mancos Trail

Length: 10.0 Miles (16.67 Kilometers)
Trail Number: 565

Outfitters and Guides

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

West  Mancos River
Copyright: Jensen - US Forest Service
West Mancos River
This trail offers spectacular views of Hesperus Peak as it passes through aspen, spruce, and fir forests. Motorized vehicles are not allowed. The trail follows West Mancos Canyon upstream for 5.0 miles to the historic mining town of Golconda. The trail continues up the north side of the south fork of the West Mancos River.

The trail meets and follows the Owens Basin Trail for 0.2 mile, veering left at the sign. Keep to the left and follow the switchbacks uphill, heading north to Horsefly Flats. From there the trail follows an old logging road through an open area to the north fork of the West Mancos River and up the drainage to Sharkstooth Trailhead.

Directions from Mancos, Colorado: Travel north on Colorado State Hwy 184 for 0.2 mile and turn east onto West Mancos Road (Forest Development Road 561). Follow signs 10.0 miles to Transfer Campground. The trailhead is on the right, directly across from the campground.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Accessible: Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend .

Current Conditions & Trip Reports
Winter conditions. Updated: 2004-04-23 14:11:00.0

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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Hiking & Walking West Mancos Trail
ICON Horseback Riding
ICON Mountain Biking

Related Activities
Big Al Trail - The trail passes through ponderosa pine, oak and aspen stands to a viewing platform overlooking the West Mancos Canyon. The easily graded gravel trail is handicapped accessible and offers spectacular views of the La Plata Mountains.

Sharkstooth Trail - This trail joins the Highline National Recreation Trail (part of the Colorado Trail) at Bear Creek. The trail begins in a mixed conifer forest and climbs to a rock field above timberline.

Sharkstooth Trailhead - The trail begins in a mixed conifer forest and climbs to a rock field above timberline. A side loop 1.5 miles from the trailhead explores the historic Windy Williams Mine.

Snowslide Campground - Snowslide Campground sits 5 miles up La Plata Canyon from Highway 160. La Plata Canyon and its campgrounds are heavily used during the camping season.

Transfer Campground - This four-acre campground has 12 sites in a small aspen grove northeast of Mancos.

Transfer Group Picnic Ground - The group picnic area has five double tables, a large group area, a serving table, and cooking grills, as well as a large fire pit and amphitheater, ideal for evening storytelling. Smaller, free family picnic sites are also available.

More Information
Frequently Asked Questions
Email the Local Ranger

Visitor Information:

Dolores Public Lands Office, 29211 Hwy 184 , Dolores, CO, 81323, Phone: 970-882-7296, Fax: 970-882-6841, TTY: 970-882-6842


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