The Mancos Valley is a playground for a wide variety of outdoor pursuits.

If you are more interested in a driving tour of the area, check out these day trip destinations.

Whether you enjoy rock gardens, smooth singletrack, or quiet highways, Mancos is your biking destination. Myriad hikes are available within minutes of Mancos.

Specific recommendations on our hiking and bicycling page.

MANCOS TRAILS GROUP LOGOMancos Trails Group is a volunteer group with an excellent website for even more hiking and biking destinations:

TheĀ West Mancos Trail in the San Juan National Forest offers access to iconic views of Hesperus Peak and the La Platas as it emerges from the West Mancos River, gaining 2,000 feet in elevation over the 10-mile trail. The trail starts at Transfer Recreation Area. The trail drops down to the West Mancos River, paralleling the river before climbing steeply up to Horsefly Flat before ending at Sharkstooth Trailhead.

Mesa Verde Stables and Rimrock Outfitters are great local options for trail riding and pack trips.


Jackson Gulch Reservoir is located in Mancos State Park and is accessed from County Road 42, just north of Mancos. Travel 4 miles east on CR 42 and turn west on CR N at the Mancos State Park turnoff. You’ll find excellent camping in a beautiful Ponderosa pine forest, a boat ramp and good fishing. For more information and current conditions, visit the website or call Mancos State Park at 970-533- 7065.

Joe Moore Reservoir, heading north on CO 184 from Mancos, turn north on County Road 40. You’ll find warm water fishing featuring trout, large mouth bass and panfish. Traveling further west on CO 184, are Puett and Summit Reservoirs. Summit is a State Wildlife Area and Puett is known locally as “little” Summit. Both have boat ramps and are stocked by the Division of Wildlife. Access Puett, from CO 184, turn south on County Road 33, then turn east on P.2 Road. Due to the threat of infestation from Zebra/Quagga mussels, trailered boat access is restricted.

Narraguinnep Reservoir is accessible from CO 184 and is located just west of McPhee Reservoir. It has warm water fishing for catfish, bass, pike, walleye and panfish. McPhee Reservoir, which stretches west and north from the town of Dolores, is one of our favorite places to fish. What makes it so special? As the second largest body of water in Colorado, McPhee is unique because it offers both cold water and warm water fishing. There aren’t many lakes in Colorado where rainbow trout and bass can be caught in the same water, but McPhee is one.

And you can catch a lot of them. To date, over 4.5 million fish have been stocked in McPhee and the DOW stocks more each year. Rainbow trout and Kokanee salmon are the primary fish species. The warm species include large and small mouth bass, and black crappie. There are size limits for bass that are specific to McPhee Reservoir. Please refer to the Colorado State Fishing Regulations brochure available at any fishing licensing outlet.

Check with the local tackle shops for more details about fishing at McPhee Reservoir. There are two major recreation sites and five fisherman access points. With more than 50 miles of shoreline, there’s plenty of room to spread out and bank fish, but we recommend you bring the boat. An ultra-modern cleaning station at the McPhee Recreation site makes the aftermath much easier, too.

Waters of the Lower Dolores River are catch-and-release only on the 11-mile stretch from the dam to Bradfield Bridge. Anglers will find Colorado River rainbow, Snake River cutthroat, and brown trout.