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jackson gulch reservoir at mancos state park

Jackson Gulch Reservoir at Mancos State Park. Photo: Park Facebook

Mancos State Park is a Colorado State Park located in Mancos, and is approximately 32 miles west of the city of Durango. The park offers birding, boating, fishing, and biking with scenic views of Jackson Gulch Reservoir.


There are a number of amusements available to Mancos State Park patrons.

Here are several of the many things to do at Mancos park:

Boating At Mancos State Park

Mancos State Park is home to Jackson Gulch Reservoir, a 217-acre lake open to boaters almost year-round. Once the lake freezes over in winter this area becomes a hotspot for ice fishing, but while the waters are warm boaters of all skill levels can pilot this pristine lake. Mancos State Park has a concrete boat launch and welcomes kayaks, canoes, sailboats, and motorized boats. While Jackson Gulch is a wakeless lake, meaning there is no water or jet skiing and boats should keep the wakes to a minimum, there’s still plenty to enjoy when piloting across this gorgeous reservoir.

Keep in mind that all boats must be inspected for Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS), and that all local and state permits and licenses are required before taken to the reservoir. Also be aware there is no swimming at the reservoir.

Biking At Mancos State Park

Mancos State Park is home to multiple single-track trails that work well with mountain bikes. While it is important to note that weather conditions can make some trails impassable, many of the trails throughout the park are crafted to withstand a rainy day, so be sure to plan ahead for a little mud before taking to the park.

As an added bonus, the trails in Mancos State Park connect to not only U.S. Forest trails, but also the Denver-to-Durango Colorado Trail, allowing you to use Mancos as your starting point for a longer, more adventurous journey across Colorado.

Hiking At Mancos State Park

Mancos State Park has a 5.5-mile trail system that interconnects with itself, making its way across the entire park and tying into larger trail systems like the Durango-to-Denver Colorado Trail, as well as trails across the U.S. Forest Service land.

Here are some of the trails at Mancos State Park:

  • Black Bear Trail – Acting as a connector between the Chicken Creek Trail and the Colorado Trail, this trail can be shortened or lengthened depending on the desired intensity. Length: 1.9 miles Degree of Difficulty: moderate
  • Mountain Lion Trail – This easy trail leads into several different trails splits, including the more difficult Black Bear Trail and Loop, as well as to walk the path itself back for a short but satisfying hike. Length: 0.6 miles Degree of Difficulty: easy
  • Mule Deer Trail – This trail offers hikers incredible views of the Jackson Gulch Reservoir along the northern edge. Length: 1.9 miles Degree of Difficulty: easy

Fishing At Mancos State Park

Mancos State Park offers fishing opportunities all year, with both warmer weather fishing as well as ice fishing once the lake has sufficiently frozen over. As the fish are as particular as the weather, check out the state park website to find out the current fishing report, as well as ideal conditions and individual bag limits.

Horseback Riding At Mancos State Park

The trails that make their way through Mancos State Park are ideal for horseback riding, especially due to the interconnectivity with U.S. Forest trails. Visit the state park website for more information.

Winter Activities At Mancos State Park

Mancos State Park comes alive in the winter months, with ice fishing and ice skating once the reservoir is frozen over, as well as snow tubing, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. While there are no snowmobiles or off-highway vehicles (OHV) allowed at Mancos State Park, the proximity to other areas makes this a great staging ground for other snowmobile trails.

Pets At Mancos State Park

Dogs are welcomed at Mancos State Park, so long as they are kept on a 6-foot or shorter leash and their waste is properly disposed of. Horses are welcome for horseback riding, though it should be noted that parking for horse trailers may be difficult during periods of high traffic such as weekends and holidays.

Camping At Mancos State Park

Mancos has 32 campsites for those looking to explore the park, as well as yurt camping locations and winter camping available. Keep in mind that all campsites must be reserved in advance and that Mancos State Park is not set up for RV camping or camping requiring amenities. Check out their website for more information.

Park Location

Mancos State Park
42545 County Road N
Mancos CO 81328
Phone: 970.533.7065



Here is a brief YouTube video showing different attractions at Mancos State Park: