Make Lemon Lake a Stop on Your Family Vacation in Durango, Colorado
“A Peaceful Mountain Retreat”
Right outside Durango, tucked away in the upper Florida River Valley, you’ll find Lemon Lake. Just 16 miles northeast of Durango, Lemon Lake is the smaller of two area reservoirs (the other being Vallecito Lake) built in the mid 1900’s to irrigate the lower-lying farmlands of Colorado. The benefits of this manmade wonder are two-fold, as Lemon Lake offers visitors to Durango a wealth of incredible outdoor activities to enjoy while on vacation in Colorado.
- Fishing—Lemon Lake is well known for medal-winning fish, making the Florida River Valley a magnet for fishing enthusiasts. Bring your fly rod or rent one from one of Durango’s outfitters and cast off from Lemon Lake’s 10 miles of shoreline. Tie your fly and be pulling in record-breaking rainbow trout and Kokanee salmon in no time.
- Hiking—Visitors looking for a rustic Durango campground to make their hiking base camp will be right at home at Lemon Lake. The steep pine- and aspen-covered mountains surrounding the lake provide a number of great trails, offering families on vacation in Durango a chance to get out into nature and experience the Rocky Mountains.
- Biking—The road to Lemon Lake has become a favorite of cyclists in the Durango area. The Out and Back route features a solid, medium grade climb of about 1,200 feet and offers riders spectacular views along the 26-mile trip. Start at the corner of Colorado Road 250 and Florida Road and pedal northwest on Florida Road until it turns to gravel. From there it’s a short climb to a lookout above the reservoir before you turn around for the descent into town.
- Boating/Sailing/Windsurfing—Less crowded than its counterpart, Lemon Lake is the perfect mountain destination for those looking to get out on the water. The high elevation and intermittent winds make the lake a popular destination for small sailboats and windsurfers, and though the water is often fairly cold, you’ll sometimes find some brave souls on water skis. With no day-use fee and ample boat trailer parking, Lemon Lake is a popular destination for water sports enthusiasts.
To reach Lemon Lake, head northeast out of town on Colorado Road 240/Florida Road. After 13.8 miles, stay to the left and continue on to Colorado Road 243. After another 3.4 miles you’ll find yourself at the entrance to the visitor area and ready to enjoy a day on the lake.
To learn more about the exciting outdoor activities and things to do at Lemon Lake, contact the Durango Area Tourism Office at 1-800-525-8855 today.
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