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Pagosa History



Countless centuries ago, the inhabitants of the Four Corners area of southern Colorado discovered a mineral-rich hot springs on the banks of the San Juan River. During the 1870's a U.S. government fort was established near the site of the springs, and shortly thereafter, a town called Pagosa Springs began growing up along the banks of the San Juan River.

Nestled in a wide mountain valley, surrounded by pine-covered hills, rolling grassy meadows, and blue mountain lakes, and bordered on two sides by the dramatic peaks of the San Juan Mountains, Pagosa Springs offers a mountain paradise to visitors and residents alike.

Image by sydney Rae


Today, Archuleta County, with Pagosa Springs as its county seat, is one of the fastest-growing counties in the U.S. and one of the major tourism and recreation centers of the Four Corners area. Among the area's main attractions are a 27-hole championship golf course, a ski area known for "the most snow in Colorado", abundant fishing, rafting, and boating opportunities, excellent elk and deer habitat, two museums, a wildlife park, close proximity to noted archeological sites, hiking trails, and much more.


Visitors and residents alike have been drawn here by the area's clean air and water, relaxed pace of life, abundant recreational opportunities, reasonably-priced and readily-available homes and land, active churches and spiritual communities, and, of course, the "healing waters" of the Great Pagosa Hot Springs, one of the world's largest mineral springs. An active business community supports the rural lifestyle of area residents with a variety of shopping opportunities and services. The Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce has a large staff of volunteer "ambassadors" and is an excellent source of tourism and visitor information, as well as printed business and recreation brochures and guides.

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