Salida Ranger District

  

The Salida Ranger District is part of the Pike and San Isabel National Forests. The district encompasses over 440,000 acres of public lands and is located in the central part of Colorado near the towns of Salida, Buena Vista and Poncha Springs. Visitors can enjoy hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, 4-wheeling and camping surrounded by towering peaks that rise above the valley floor. The Arkansas River flows through the valley and is one of Colorado's premiere whitewater rafting areas.

THE CLIMATE

Elevations in the Upper Arkansas River valley vary from 7,000 to over 14,000 feet. Temperatures vary throughout the year from the low teens in the winter to the 80's during the summer months. The valley is known locally as the "Banana Belt of Colorado" because of the generally mild temperatures and sunny days. Springtime can be deceptive with sporadic spring snowstorms occurring from March to May. During the summer months, days are warm with cool nights. Afternoon thundershowers are common during July and August. The fall months are are generally dry and sunny with cooler morning temperatures.

District boundaries encompass a portion of the Sangre de Cristo mountains west to the Continental Divide and Monarch Pass ( 11,386 feet) and south to Poncha Pass (9,015 feet). The northern boundary stops north of Buena Vista and splits the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness area between the Salida and Leadville Ranger Districts. The eastern boundary of the District is situated northeast of Salida and meanders north towards Trout Creek Pass.

Our new office is located at 5575 Cleora Road in Salida and is open Mon-Fri, 8-4:30. Our phone number is 719-539-3591.

Recreation Map

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Activities


Bicycling

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Camping & Cabins

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Climbing

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Fishing

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Hiking

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Horse Riding & Camping

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Hunting

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Nature Viewing

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OHV Riding & Camping

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Other Activities

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Outdoor Learning

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Picnicking

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Rocks & Minerals

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Winter Sports

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