View Full Version : Durango Colorado.......opinions on visiting

07-16-2011, 05:04 AM
Thinking about going down that way after a few weeks here, have you been there, did you like it? Pros cons ?

07-16-2011, 05:41 AM
Boy you don't know what you are missing in KC. Beautiful hot and steamy days followed by blast furnace nights. We visited Durango several years ago w/o the RV. One of our favorite places. We are going back in Sept. with the RV. If you go the narrow gauge railroad to Silverton is a must. Ouray is beautiful, and the cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde are neat. There are just tons of wilderness to go and explore after you park the 5'er. Many of the forest service roads are doable in a 4X4 pick-up. You are in for some awesome views. Jim

07-16-2011, 06:04 AM
We too visited Durango and loved it. Mesa Verde is a must as is the day trip on the train to Silverton. The water falls that you can reach out to while on the train was beautiful. We did not have our 5th wheel then, but plan to go back with it. Lots of neat places to side trip to.

Bruce Lenhardt
07-16-2011, 06:35 AM
We were just there in mid May. They had just opened the Train to Silverton. Good trip but long for a round trip. I suggest taking it one way and ride the bus back. We were only there a couple of days. It could be a place to stay for a week or so.

07-16-2011, 07:02 AM
We were in that area, June 23-30, we stayed at A&A Mesa Verde RV, addressed out of Mancos, CO, just across From Mesa Verda Park, Short drive to Durango, Cortez, Four Corners area, beautiful area. Left there to go to Del Norte, CO, then to Colorado Springs, leaving tomarrow to head across Kansas.
Stay off Millon Dollar Highway with rig attached!
Isn't Colorado just Beautiful & COOL, both ways!!

07-16-2011, 07:14 AM
We're going there next week! Will be staying at a national forest site called Junction Creek (you can make reservations). They have 50 amp hookups in loop E. Just 10 minutes from town but you'd never know it. They have water from spigots but not at each site. No dump facilities in the campground but you can dump for FREE at the chamber of commerce and fill up your fresh tank there as well.
Great paved bicycle trail along the river. Very friendly town. Nice people.
I second taking the train ride BUT you may want to take the bus back. We did the train ride BOTH ways and we were exhausted by the time we got back. Glad we did it though.
Definitely don't want to pull the Monty on the million dollar highway (at least I wouldn't).

07-17-2011, 11:58 AM
Love Durango. Will stay at United Campground from mid-August-mid Sept. This is our fourth year in a row. Durango-Silverton train is a must. We took the train up and bus back. Ouray is beautiful. Lots of 4 wheel excursions and trails. Mesa Verde is a must see. We took the bus tour, bus driver knew everything there was to know about Mesa Verde. Lots of white water rafting. Great weather in Aug-Sept.

07-17-2011, 01:17 PM
Jim, the drive from Silverton to Durango is just plain stunningly gorgeous. Allow a LOT of time for that drive. You will want to stop at every pullout to gawk and take pictures.

Also, very highly recommend Mesa Verde National Park. Amazing place. Really surprised us as it's a whole lot better than we anticipated. We stayed at the Mesa Verde RV Resort, just down the road from A&A that Chuck mentioned. Both places are close to Mesa Verde NP. The "official" scenic drive goes from Cortez up through Rico and Keystone, close to Telluride (side trip??) and up to Ridgway, then back down to Durango. It's all beautiful but if not enough time for all of it, the Ridgway to Durango section is the most gorgeous.

As for did we like it? Resounding YES.

07-17-2011, 01:52 PM
Thanks, guys appreciate it. Which route is the easy pull from the East?

07-17-2011, 03:49 PM
We take I-25 south then 160 West. All good roads & no problem with RV height. [8D]

quote:Originally posted by Ozz

Thanks, guys appreciate it. Which route is the easy pull from the East?

07-18-2011, 04:45 AM
I agree with the US 160 route from I-25. We go to that area every summer. I have only pulled the Monte as far as South Fork, but have driven on to Durango.
Two passes. North La Veta Pass shortly after leaving I-25. Fairly long, but not too hard of a pull.
Then Wolf Creek Pass after you go thru South Fork. Going west is easiest. Not bad going up, but much steeper on the west side of the pass going down. There is a snow shed as you near the top. Mind the speed signs when they say sharp curve ahead inside the snow shed. They mean it. And take it easy going down, about 8 miles of mostly 7% grade on the west side. Two lanes both directions most of the way down so you can take your time without holding up traffic. And they do have a couple of runaway truck ramps just in case you need them. [:0] Drove the pass about 3 weeks ago and came up behind a truck pulling off at the bottom with smoke billowing out of the trailer brakes. Guess he forgot to downshift. Coming back, there was an SUV/TT broke down right in the middle of the road about halfway up and two more pulled off to the side appeared to be cooling down.
No problems after Wolf Creek Pass.

07-18-2011, 05:06 AM
US 50 is a beautiful drive, too, but you'd then go south on US 550 from Montrose but then cut west on 62 and south on 146 to Cortez, then back east to Durango. I wouldn't want to tow US 550 from Ridgway to Durango so would take 62/146. But by all means drive that stretch solo and allow yourself all day to do so!

The 160 route is probably more direct. We've only done a part of that one, from Durango to around Pagosa Springs, then we went south to Santa Fe. The picture in my signature was taken on US 50 at Monarch Pass this past May.

07-18-2011, 07:20 AM
Durango is a must if you are going to be in the area. We had a condo in Pagosa when we lived in Abq. Much to see in the area and good campgrounds north of city on the way to Silverton. We plan on staying in that area next summer. Montrose, Durango, La Veta and Grand Junction for a month each. Durango train is OK, I prefer Chama's.
Getting there depends on where you are (north, south, west) currently. I would not recommend pulling Monty on the million dollar road, of course some have do it but were not as heavy as you.

07-18-2011, 09:14 AM
OZZ: Towed our other trailers and MH over US550 several times over the years. 18 wheelers run it every day. Just don't do it during snow season. There is a marker to dead snowplow drivers lost in the Riverside Slide.

Parts Ed
07-18-2011, 09:47 AM
Okay, I'll bite--What is the million dollar highway?? [:I]

07-18-2011, 10:05 AM
quote:Originally posted by Parts Ed

Okay, I'll bite--What is the million dollar highway?? [:I]

US 550 Between Silverton and Ouray, CO.

Said to be named that because 1> it cost that much to build 2> built on mine tailings worth that much.

07-18-2011, 10:36 AM
Not to mention being one of the most spectacular roads in the country for scenery. Ouray to Silverton to Durango. Wow.

Bigmurf, isn't that entire stretch from Ouray to Silverton to Durango titled the "million dollar highway?"

07-18-2011, 11:22 AM
Generally I think only the portion from Ouray to Silverton is the actual Million Dollar Highway.
Million Dollar Highway (http://www.roadtripusa.com/routes/loneliestroad/colorado/lon_us550.html)
Here you can take a "High speed" tour from Ouray to Silverton. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idXrlV3aWgo) Note that there are no shoulders and no guard rails. But you will see some 5ers and TTs on the road.