Ridgway State Park’s Enchanted Mesa Trail

Once you’ve arrived here your only regret will be that you have to leave…

Wandering around the western slope heading south, the expansive views of the San Juans and Mt. Sneffels is so striking you can’t help but be drawn to them. 

Anytime we are in this area we stop and hike, “Enchanted Mesa Trail”, the longest in the Park and the most challenging. The trail wraps around the Reservoir on the western side and makes its way down to the dam and eventually heads down a varily steep area into the Pa-Co-Chu-Puk area.

Today it’s late spring and lots of cactus and yucca with a few blooming wildflowers sprinkle the trial. Under partly cloudy skies with temps in the 70’s, the lake looks turquoise.

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After a walk along pavement you’ll find the beginning of the dirt trailhead (directly across the lake from the swimbeach) The beginning of the 2.5 hike becomes quite moderate but keep going, it eventually levels off and for the next 2 miles its a gentle rolling path.

The top of the Mesa is a breath of fresh air with minimal hikers about and unbeatable views. 

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Towards the end of the hiking trail, before reaching the dam, an unexpected, complete change in fluora greets you. You’ll begin hiking down into a damper, lush setting, only to find yourself back on the Mesa again heading onto the other side of the dam.

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The best and will have you stopping at Ridgway State Park over and over for a quick easy hike is when you head back on this trail.

You’ll bask in the wrap-around views of snow covered peaks hiking back and stretched alongside you is this amazing lake.

We had the pleasure of being greeted and for a short time followed by several deer while heading back.

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Our car is parked at reservoir. Bring a paddle board?

A paved bike path goes into the town of Ridgway. Grab lunch?

You could do it all in a day! hike, bike, paddle board…

We have been here numerous times for various outdoor activities, and this quiet, beautiful park has become one of our favorites stops for a peaceful, amazing day any time of year.

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Endless outdoor activities, in one of the most beautiful, most memorable spots you’ll find in Colorado. 

Outdoor paradise for all ages include: Camping, paddle boarding, hiking, biking, wildlife viewing, boating, fishing. 

Known as one of Colorado’s best campgrounds


Enchanted Mesa Trail – 5 miles out and back

Rated: easy/moderate

Ridgway State Park, located: 2855 Hwy 550, Ridgway, CO  81432

17 miles from Montrose, CO

4.7 miles from Ridgway, CO

14 miles from Ouray, CO

44 miles from Telluride, CO