This SWA provides a break from the monotonous, flat dry San Luis Valley floor. It is an as oasis of riparian woodland and ponds, mixed with some excellent sage habitat and small cattail marshes. Though closed during the summer waterfowl nesting season, this is still an excellent place to visit during fall migration; keep an eye out for passerine migrants in the cottonwoods, Marsh Wren and rails in the marsh, various duck species in the ponds, and Sage Sparrows in the sage along the entrance road. During the winter, sparrows and Northern Shrike are possible. Deer, rabbits and ground squirrels can be abundant, and muskrats and beaver swim in the ponds.County: Conejos
Habitat: Pond, Marsh, Lowland Riparian, Sagebrush
Directions: From the intersection of CO 142 and US 285 south of La Jara, go east 6.5 miles on CO 142 through Manassa, over a river crossing and past the point where the route bends slightly north to a small dirt road on the left. Follow this road about .75 miles, staying right at all the intersections, until you reach a small parking lot overlooking two small ponds that are sometimes dry.
Delorme: 90 C3-C4
Roads of Colorado: 151 D2
Dates of Access: July 16 to Feb. 14.
Ownership: Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Restrictions: Closed Feb 15 to July 15 to protect nesting waterfowl.
Parking: Gravel parking area
Lodging: Primitive camping
Handicapped Access: Some viewing from car