Area hiking trails reveal massive peaks, rivers twisting through canyons and forests of aspen and pine. One section of the Rio Grande River boasts Gold Medal status; here big, brown trout bite hard and often. Each July, the Del Norte Mountain Bike Stage Race comes to town, offering a glimpse of Colorado's challenging cross-country biking.
Just outside Del Norte awaits Penitente Canyon, once a worship area for the devout Catholic sect Los Hermanos Penitente and now a worship area for devout rock climbers from around the world. Featuring more than 300 sport-climbing routes, the canyon has been featured in Climbing magazine and, with a year-round campground nearby, it continues to attract enthusiasts of the ascent.
Back in town, visit the Rio Grande County Museum and Cultural Center, housing arrowheads, minerals and other relics from the time when John Charles Fremont and party froze to death during their expedition in the La Garita Mountains, north of Del Norte.
Photo Credit: Flickr/Renee Garfias, Visual Information Specialist, Bureau of Land Management Colorado