North of Durango, the Hermosa Creek Trail is one of the most popular horseback riding trails in southwest Colorado. The 18.7 mile Hermosa Creek Trail starts west of Durango Mountain Resort and heads south to Hermosa Campground. This is a very popular route for mountain bikers and dirt bikers, so use caution.
The route descends for 6 miles on doubletrack and then rolls another 12.7 miles narrow trail through a lush, roadless ponderosa forest. The two river crossings can get waist high in the spring and early summer.
The altitude ranges from 8,885 feet down to 7,670 feet, but there's plenty of climbing in the lower half.
To reach the upper trailhead for the Hermosa Creek Trail from Durango, follow US550 north for 28 miles to Durango Mountain Resort. Turn west onto Hermosa Park Road (FS578) for 8 miles. The trail starts on the left.
To reach the lower trailhead for the Hermosa Creek Trail from Durango, head north on US550 to Hermosa Creek Road (CR201/FS576). Turn left heading west up Hermosa Creek Road for 3.5 miles to the trailhead parking area.
Overall, Hermosa Creek Multi-Purpose Trail is the 15th most popular horse trail of all 66 horseback rides in Colorado.