BETH TOLLEFSEN

When John Denver sang “thank God I’m a country boy,” it’s hard to imagine he was talking about what you’ll find along the I-70 corridor today, but get away from the hustle and bustle and noise surrounding the bigger metropolitan centers, come down to the Four Corners area of southwestern Colorado, and you’ll find the kind of small-town charm people still sing about.

There’s plenty to fall in love with: warm sunshine, pristine rivers, abundant wildlife, stately stands of pine and aspen groves, verdant valleys and breathtaking vistas. It’s impossible to describe what it feels like to be sitting around a campfire at night, to look up through the pines at a clear night sky so full of stars it makes your heart race. It’s just something you need to experience for yourself.

Pagosa Springs still represents the idyllic vision of what Colorado was always meant to be. While many resort towns have become so overrun by the glitz, glamour and flash of Hollywood that real people can’t afford to go there anymore, Pagosa Country has retained its Old West charm while still offering the amenities of the 21st century. 

So small but so much!

With an excellent public library, art galleries, churches (including the Tara Mandala Buddhist retreat center), specialty shops and a digitized movie theater, Pagosa Springs provides more than enough to inspire the mind and spirit, while offering everything to either heal or exercise the body. 

If you need directions or information for any of these (or other) amenities, stop by the Pagosa Springs Visitor Center, which offers a wealth of information on everything from Wolf Creek Ski Area to Chimney Rock National Monument and beyond.

Like no other place on Earth!

Backpackers, campers, hikers, mountain bikers and other adventuresome souls will want to visit the U.S. Forest Service Pagosa Ranger District Office located at 2nd and Pagosa streets, just two blocks east of Hot Springs Boulevard on U.S. 160. The staff there can provide a wealth of information about hiking and biking trails, campsites, fishing spots and horseback riding, as well as various tours of the area including the ancestral Puebloan ruins at Chimney Rock National Monument.

Pagosa ROCKS!

Needless to say, there is plenty of rock climbing around Pagosa Springs, but once you rappel down, there’s plenty of music to greet you. The Pagosa Folk and Bluegrass Festival happens in June, while the Four Corners Folk Festival plays out on Labor Day weekend.

Water, water everywhere …

A short walk south from the Visitor Center will take you to “The Great Pagosah — the Deepest Hot Spring in the World.” 

If you’re a swimmer, the Healing Waters Resort and Spa at the corner of San Juan Street and Hot Springs Boulevard offers an outdoor pool and indoor mineral baths. The Springs Resort and Spa also offers an outdoor pool and outdoor geothermal hot tubs located next to the river. The Overlook Spa on Pagosa Street offers an opulent Victorian experience for soaking.

Nevertheless, and nearer still, Pagosa Springs provides ample opportunity to splash and smile. Late summer finds bathers and tubers alike taking to the river, to enjoy a tame — and refreshing — float down the San Juan River. 

Fall in love 

Windsurfing? Navajo Lake awaits you. Ballooning? Golf? Tennis? It’s all here, under the clearest blue sky you’ve ever seen. 

For the earliest native inhabitants of the area, Pagosa was considered a land of healing waters. For today’s vacationers, Pagosa is a land of invigorating experiences. 

If this is your first time to Pagosa Country, make yourself at home in the midst of the most beautiful scenery and friendliest people in Colorado. 

If you’ve been here before, welcome back. If you’ve never been here, come find out why so many have said, “The first time I came here, I fell in love with the place.”