Pagosa Springs, Colorado

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The Town of Pagosa Springs is a Home Rule Municipality that is the county seat of, and the only incorporated municipality in, Archuleta County, Colorado, United States.[5] The population was 1,591 at the 2000 census. Approximately 65 percent of county land is either San Juan National Forest or Southern Ute Indian land.

Pagosa Springs and the surrounding county are both experiencing a substantial influx of second home owners; a 2006 property assessment indicates that 60% of area private properties are owned by non-residents.

Pagosa Springs is located approximately 35 miles (56 km) north of the New Mexico border, nestled at 7,000 feet (2,100 m) on the Western Slope of the Continental Divide. This combination of high desert plateau and dramatic Rocky Mountains to the north and east creates an unusually mild climate, especially in the summer months, when compared with much of the surrounding Southwest. Pagosa is favored with around 300 days of sun each year, as well as four distinct seasons.

The town is located in the upper San Juan Basin, surrounded by the 3 million acre (12,000 km²) San Juan National Forest, and adjacent to the largest wilderness area in the state of Colorado, the Weminuche Wilderness.

People gather at the Hot Springs, one of the largest and hottest natural springs in the world, and one which continues to be celebrated for its therapeutic powers. The Utes called the sulfur-rich mineral springs "Pah gosah" meaning "healing waters" and visitors from all over the world come to enjoy its hot baths. Some come to cure ailments, others to simply relax in the mineral-rich waters. The Hot Springs are a natural complement to the Pagosa Springs area's year round recreational activities, which include downhill and cross country skiing at nearby Wolf Creek ski area. Snowmobiling in the forest service land is also quite popular. Summertime activities include fishing, hiking, and rafting. Come autumn, the area is a popular destination for hunters, who harvest elk, deer, and other game animals.

"Downtown Pagosa Springs" was the final destination for a duo of truckers in the 1975 country song "Wolf Creek Pass" by C.W. McCall. U.S. Highway 160 from the pass to town goes through a vertical drop of around 5,000 feet (1,500 m), and is described in the song as "hairpin county and switchback city".

Contents

Geography

Pagosa Springs is located at 37°16′5″N 107°1′28″W / 37.26806°N 107.02444°W / 37.26806; -107.02444 (37.268032, -107.024554)[6].

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