Tucked away in the upper Florida River Valley, Lemon Reservoir, the smaller of two area reservoirs (the other being Vallecito Lake), is located just 16 miles northeast of Durango. This beautiful man-made reservoir offers visitors to Durango a wealth of incredible outdoor activities to enjoy while vacationing in the area.
Well known for medal-winning fish, Lemon Reservoir is a magnet for fishing enthusiasts. Bring your fly rod or rent one from one of Durango’s outfitters and cast off from 10 miles of shoreline. Tie your fly and pull in record-breaking rainbow trout and Kokanee salmon in no time.
Hiking & Camping
Visitors looking for a rustic Durango campground to make their hiking base camp will be right at home at Lemon Reservoir. The steep pine and aspen covered mountains surrounding the lake provide a number of great trails, offering families a chance to get out into nature and experience the Rocky Mountains from a whole new perspective.
The road to Lemon Reservoir 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.
Less crowded than its counterpart, Lemon Reservoir 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 Reservoir is a popular destination for watersports enthusiasts.
To reach Lemon Reservoir, head northeast out of Durango 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 wonderful day on the lake!