Nearby Attractions

Experience the best
of South Fork
and surrounding areas

What To Do

Check out the best of
South Fork

The Upper Rio Grande Valley is brimming with possibility when it comes to adventure and outdoor recreation. We’ve gathered a few suggestions here, but our list is by no means exhaustive! Is there something you were hoping to experience while you are visiting the area? Just ask us! We’re happy to tell you everything we know about all the fun things to see and do in and around South Fork.

mountain biking

Prefer to explore the mountains on a set of wheels? You’ve come to the right place. Rio Grande County is quickly becoming a hotspot for mountain biking, with trails ranging from technical desert singletrack and heart-pounding mountain climbs, to scenic forest roads perfect for the beginner biker. Most trails in our area are designated multi-use, so be prepared to encounter hikers, horseback riders and even ATVs or dirt bikes along your route. And no matter your fitness level, remember, you’re starting your ride at 8,200 feet above sea level! So don’t be surprised if the biking here feels a bit more challenging than it does at home. For more information and some recommendations on favorite area trails, visit or

hiking 1


The mighty San Juan Mountains provide endless opportunities for hiking and camping within minutes of the town of South Fork. From cascading waterfalls to red rock arches, you’ll find a wide variety of natural wonders to explore on hikes suitable for every age and ability level. Our mountains are very rugged and wild, so if you travel quietly, you can expect to see wildlife of all kinds, from deer, elk and moose, to eagles and maybe even a bobcat or bear.

No matter your destination, be sure to plan ahead and carry a pack with plenty of food, water and extra clothing–the weather changes rapidly in the mountains and can go from hot sunshine to rain, hail or snow within minutes! Click here for suggestions on some of the area’s top hiking destinations.


The Rio Grande National Forest is a four-wheel-drive playground. If Jeeping, ATV/UTV or dirt bike riding is your passion, this is the perfect place to get your fix. From historic mountain routes to technical trails that will get your adrenaline pumping, you’ll find something to suit every interest and skill level. Don’t own a jeep or off-road vehicle? No problem! South Fork has a number of businesses offering rentals and guided trips. Check here for more information on trails and businesses offering rentals and trips.



If you’re looking for the perfect place to wet a line, you won’t have to look very far: from the Gold Medal waters of the Rio Grande, to scenic high mountain lakes and small streams, this is one of the best trout fishing destinations in Colorado. No matter your fishing style or experience level, you will find plenty of spots to try your luck at catching beautiful brookies, rainbows or brown trout. And the area’s experienced guides will be happy to show you the best spots or help you select just the right lure or fly pattern to fit the season and the water you’ll be fishing. To learn more about all the area’s fishing opportunities, click here.

For bow, black powder and rifle hunters, the public lands around South Fork offer unique opportunities to fill a tag for elk, deer, bighorn sheep, antelope and much more. The Colorado Parks & Wildlife website is the go-to resource for information on our three hunting units (76, 79 and 80) and the more than 100 huntable species you can find here and across the state of Colorado. While most species have a limited season and/or bag limits, there are still over-the-counter licenses available for many animals, including deer and elk. If a hunting trip is in your future, be sure to contact one of our local guides or outfitters for tips on planning your hunt. You can find a list of hunting guides here and additional information on area opportunities here.


The headwaters of the Rio Grande offer the perfect, family-friendly float trip, and an ideal introduction to whitewater rafting. And if you’re an angler, a day-long float trip provides an exceptional opportunity to cast to big browns and rainbows without the worry of getting hung up in willows or tree branches! If you’ve never booked a float trip before, this is the perfect spot to try it. The river is mellow and full of trout, and we have many experienced guides in the area that will be sure to put you on fish! Learn more about rafting and float opportunities here.



For those who prefer to take in the mountain views while getting in a few rounds of golf, look no further than the Rio Grande Club, an exquisite, 18-hole championship golf course perched just above the town of South Fork. Along with golf, the resort also offers a clubhouse, on-site restaurant, fitness center and fishing lodge.  Tiny Timbers guests receive added benefits at the Rio Grande Club, find details here.

If you’re looking for another great way to explore the mountains, consider an adventure on the original ATV: a horse! There are a number of experienced outfitters in the area that can take you on a guided ride through some of Colorado’s most spectacular mountain scenery.

What other recreational opportunities will you find in South Fork? Almost as many as you can imagine! There’s rock climbing at Penitente Canyonincredible bird watching, especially during the spring months when the Sandhill Cranes migrate through the valley, and much, much more!


Winter transforms the landscape of the Upper Rio Grande Valley into a wonderland of snow, ice, and clear, bright blue skies. From skiing at Wolf Creek Ski Area to snowmobilingice fishingnordic skiing and snowshoeing, or just enjoying a quick trip down a local sledding hill, winter is a great time to visit Rio Grande County.

wolf creek TJS 9551


No list of things to do in this area would be complete without mention of The Great Sand Dunes National Park. This stunning sea of sand spread out against the base of the 14,000 foot Sangre de Cristo range on the other side of the San Luis Valley, is an experience not to be missed, and our best recommendation for a day trip from South Fork. Regardless of the season, be sure to pack lots of sunscreen. The combination of elevation, sand and sun is a perfect recipe for sunburn!

A trip over Wolf Creek Pass to Pagosa Springs for a day of shopping and dining makes for another excellent day trip. There is also Wheeler Geologic Area, the Silver Thread Scenic BywayCreede’s Bachelor Loop Tour, or a trip up to Summitville. Need more ideas? Just ask us!


If you’re a Western history buff, the San Luis Valley contains a treasure trove of sites to explore. Some of our favorites include

  • Bachelor Loop & Ghost Town
  • Freemont’s Camp
  • Pfeiffers Grave
  • Summitville Abandoned Gold Mine
  • Stone Quarry
  • Old Spanish Trail
  • Wagon Tracks (possibly from conostoga wagons crossing the San Luis Valley)
  • Oldest Church in Colorado – Conejos
  • Cumbres & Toltec Scenic & Historic Railroad
  • Stations of the Cross – San Luis
  • Jack Dempsy Museum – Mannasa
  • Fort Garland
  • Pikes Stockade – Sanford


And if you’re in the mood for an evening of arts, be sure to check out a performance at the award-winning Creede Repertory Theatre, the oldest professional theater company in Colorado.


On-Site Activities

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