Near Durango, the Missionary Ridge Trail is a 8.2 mile route with 2,700 feet of vertical. This trail is excellent during late spring through mid-fall, due to its relatively low elevation and southeast-facing slopes. The trail winds through timber on the lower section, but opens up farther along the trail. The trail climbs steeply for two miles at the beginning, then dips and climbs up to mile 7. From this point, the last 1.2 miles is level to the junction with Stevens Creek Trail. You will find rock ledges, water bars, fallen trees, and switchbacks on this varied trail. This trail is excellent for viewing the fall colors of the Gambel oak and aspen trees. It is not uncommon to see large game such as elk and mule deer in the Missionary Ridge Trail area.
To reach the hiking trailhead from US550 in Durango, head east on 32nd Street and travel to the end, turning left (north) on County Road 250. After just over 5 miles of travel, youll see a sign (on the right (east) side of the road) for Haflin Creek, park here.