Best dog walkers in San Juan National Forest

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Wag! Walkers know San Juan National Forest

The San Juan National Forest outside of Durango, CO is one of Colorado's best outdoor areas for adventuring with your dog. This beautiful national forest boasts 3,000 square miles of impressive peaks, steep canyons, waterfalls, alpine lakes, and archeological ruins that tell the stories of past inhabitants. Avid hikers and dogs who love sniffing out trails in the natural world could spend a lifetime exploring these public lands, hiking up to beautiful vistas, and fetching sticks in alpine lakes.

With so much area to explore, the San Juan National Forest offers hiking trails for all fitness and activity levels. If you and your dog love long and challenging trail runs, you'll have plenty to choose from. If you are more into scenic strolls with your furry best friend, you can find a plethora to choose from. Either way, you'll both get some exercise while taking in the natural beauty of this special area. 

What is the terrain like in San Juan National Forest?

The San Juan Mountain National Forest outside of Durango, Colorado has several wilderness areas and many different trails that are minimally maintained. Expect these trails to be dirt with some challenging, steep sections, uneven footing, and obstacles such as roots and rocks to climb over. This natural environment is perfect to keep your dog interested and well exercised and will challenge you as well.

You can find easier trails that meander along clear, mountain streams. These trails are more friendly to young families, older or smaller dogs, and people who are looking for a gentle walk in the woods. Though the area can be dry in the summer, you can still find plenty of pools and streams to cool off in. Many of the trails in the San Juan National Forest are at altitude or take you up to vistas that are high above sea level. Be aware, let yourself adjust for a few days, drink lots of water, and take it slow.

How many greenways are there in San Juan National Forest?

If you are looking for an easy dog walk in the San Juan National Forst along a river or stream, the Animas River trail is the perfect hike for you and your pup. This trail is 6.7 miles and follows along the Animas River and is an alternative to taking the train to get to Chicago Basin. The trail winds through steep canyon walls and sticks close to the river bank, offering plenty of opportunities for your dog to cool off and swim.

From Durango, you also have the opportunity to hike along the Colorado Trail! The Colorado Trail is a 486-mile thru-hiking trail that runs all the way to Denver. You can experience the thrill of this trail without the commitment and bring joy to the backpackers setting out on their journey or just finishing by letting them play with your dog. Many day hikers enjoy a 5-mile round trip hike by traveling the easy trail to the bridge as an out-and-back. 

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