When you’re a destination for every other mountain sport (skiing, climbing, and mountain biking, to name a few), it’s easy to get overwhelmed. But, if you’re looking to hit the trail for a good trail run, Durango has some incredible trails right in town for runners of all levels. Try out our favorites and let us know what you know think!
If you like the best views in town (and who doesn’t?) and burning thighs (and who doesn’t...), then Skyline is for you. The first 1.7 miles are essentially all uphill, with plenty of switchbacks through scrub oak and pine. The trail is fairly even underfoot, though watch out for tree stubs and roots. When you reach the top of Raider Ridge, the Animas Valley opens the northwest with distant views of the La Plata Mountains. Here, the trail is quite a bit rockier than before and can be technical in places. To access the Skyline Trail, park at the end of Jenkins Ranch Road in the Skyridge subdivision near Fort Lewis College.
This network of trails offers something for runners of every level, with short loops, long routes, technical climbs, and pleasant jogs through a mountain valley. Horse Gulch is flanked by Raider Ridge on one side and blank ridge on the other. Our favorite trails through the area include the Meadow Loop to Stacy’s Trail to Mike’s and back, a 6ish mile loop with plenty of uphill and rewarding downhill. Horse Gulch is easy access via the Horse Gulch Road at East 3rd Street or via the Skyline Trail.
Junction Creek to Gudy’s Rest
This is a Durango favorite for hikers as well as trail runners. The Southern Terminus of the 500-mile Colorado Trail, Junction Creek is located just on the outskirts of town. It offers a pleasant jog through the mountains, beside a rushing stream. With gradual ups and downs, the trail eventually crosses Junction Creek at 2.5 miles, where it then dashes uphill to the top of the ridge for another 1.5 miles. The top, known as Gudy’s Rest, offers one of the best views of the Animas Valley.
New to town? The Durango Running Club holds a group run every Wednesday night. It’s a great way to learn the trails and meet fellow runners. Check out their website for the full schedule.