Vogel Canyon - Comanche National Grassland

Comanche National Grassland

Vogel Canyon Picnic Area - Elevation 4,375 feet 


  Horseback  Picnic area  Bird watching  wheelchair accesible restroom


From La Junta, Colorado drive south on Highway 109 for 13 miles. Turn right (west) on County Road 802 for 1.5 miles. Turn left (south) on Forest Service Road 505A for 1.5 miles to the Vogel Canyon parking lot.

From Springfield, Colorado drive west on Highway 160 for 48 miles, then turn right (north) on Highway 109 for 43 miles. Turn left (west) on County Road 802 for 1.5 miles. Turn left (south) on Forset Service Road 505A for 1.5 miles to the Vogel Canyon parking lot.


Geologically scenic Vogel Canyon is a tributary of the Purgatorie River Drainage.

Two permanent springs located at the bottom of the canyon, help support a variety of wildlife, which can best be seen early in the morning or just before sunset.

Four hiking trails take you to the canyon bottom and mesa top, while walking through shortgrass prairie and juniper trees.

American Indians lived in the canyon 300 - 800 years ago and left rock art which is visible on the canyon walls.

During the 1870's, a spur off the Santa Fe Trail (Las Animas to Trinidad) was developed by the Barlow and Sanderson Mail and Stage Line.  Sections of the stage coach road and ruins of the station can still be found.

Settled during the depression era, stone walled ruins from the Westbrook homestead still stand.


3 covered picnic tables with grills (charcoal fires allowed in grills only)
1 vault toilet
4 hiking trails
2 horse hitching rails
horse trailer parking
drinking water NOT available.


Camping is allowed in the parking area only. However, no electricity, water or garbage containers are available.


Heavy - spring and fall
Moderate - summer
Light - winter

Special Users Fee:



Recreation area road map


Canyon Trail
Mesa Trail
Overlook Trail
Prairie Trail


Please carry water with you. Spring water is not safe to drink.

Look for cairns, or stone post, to help you locate the trails. Please stay on trails.

Pay attention to the trail. Shortgrass prairie and rocky areas are home to rattlesnakes and cacti.


Today vandalism is a continuing problem in this fragile area. Rock Art is particularly sensitive. Please photograph but do not touch or apply photographic enhancing or replication materials.

These sites on public lands are protected under federal law. We thank you for observing all the regulations for this area and for helping us to preserve this valuable resource. Please be part of the solution, not part of the problem.