Junction Creek Campground
Aliases: Animas Overlook
The closest forest service campground to Durango not only provides a good place to camp, it also provides one of the most accessible places in the state for the likes of Grace’s Warbler, Flammulated and Northern Saw-whet Owls, and Williamson’s Sapsucker. The ponderosa pine/aspen mix can be excellent for these and a variety of other birds, and if you continue up into the spruce-fir you could come across Dusky Grouse, Golden-crowned Kinglet, and the other species typical of the habitat. Keep an eye out for the Peregrine Falcons that nest nearby, and for the handsome Abert’s squirrel, among many other mammals.
County: La Plata
Habitat: Ponderosa Forest, Aspen Grove, Spruce-Fir Forest, Cliff Face
Directions: From downtown Durango go north on US 550 and turn left (west) at 25th Street. This becomes CR 204, and three miles enters the San Juan National Forest, where it becomes FR 171. About a mile past the forest boundary is the Junction Creek Campground on the left. The road continues past the campground and reaches Animas Overlook in about eight miles, which is in spruce-fir with mature aspen habitat. The road continues for another 10 miles or more.
Delorme: 86 B2
Roads of Colorado: 146 C1
Dates of Access: Open all year
Ownership: US Forest Service
Parking: Gravel parking areas/roadside
Lodging: Fee camping
Handicapped Access: Limited viewing from car
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