The area is steeped in history from ancestors of the Ancestral Puebloans, the Utes, and the Spanish conquistadors. The 19th century brought ranching and agriculture back along with modern movie making such as the 1969 western classic “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.” The expansive Mesa Verde National Park is located nearby. The historic Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad has been transporting passengers and precious metals for 140 years. The train travels during all four seasons and carries more than 200,000 passengers per year. Nearby Purgatory Resort offers world-class skiing with over 40 miles of groomed terrain and over 260 inches of annual snowfall. The resort has been voted as having the “Best Ski Weather in America” more than ten times by SKI magazine. For the fisher, the Animas River offers Gold Medal water fishing for Trout.
Durango’s population is approximately 19,000. It is full of all necessary services, fine restaurants, shopping, arts and culture, Native American history, and numerous activities and attractions. Durango reportedly has more restaurants per capita than San Francisco. The area is rich in history and has countless attractions. Fort Lewis College is located in Durango. Recreational activities such as hunting, fishing, biking, skiing, snowmobiling, and sightseeing abound in the area.
Purgatory Mountain-Durango Mountain - Located in the San Juan Mountains of Southwest Colorado, 25 miles north of the historic town of Durango and established in 1965. Purgatory offers 105 trails, including five terrain parks, over 1,605 skiable acres, and 12 lifts, including one six-person and one high-speed quad lift. Known for being one of the best values in Colorado and a great destination for beginners and intermediates. The elevation at the summit is 10,822 feet (3,299m), with a vertical drop of 2,029 feet (618 m).
Mesa Verde National Park - Located in southwest Colorado, Mesa Verde (Spanish for green table) offers a spectacular look into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo people who made it their home for over 700 years, from AD 600 to 1300. Today the park protects nearly 5,000 known archeological sites, including 600 cliff dwellings. These sites are some of the most notable and best preserved in the United States. Mesa Verde is always open, but opportunities vary from season to season.
Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad was founded by the Denver & Rio Grande Railway in 1879. The railroad arrived in Durango on August 5, 1881 and construction on the line to Silverton began in the fall of the same year. By July of 1882, the tracks to Silverton were completed, and the train began hauling both freight and passengers. This historic train has been in continuous operation between Durango and Silverton since 1882, carrying passengers behind vintage steam locomotives and rolling stock indigenous to the line. It is a family-friendly ride sure to create memories that will last a lifetime while offering a view of Colorado’s mountain splendor inaccessible by highway. Relive the sights and sounds of yesteryear for a spectacular journey on board the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.
Million Dollar Highway - The winding US Highway 550 is also known as The Million Dollar Highway, running all the way from New Mexico to Colorado. Part of the San Juan Skyway, this highway was built in the late 1880s, and it is one of the most spectacular drives in the USA. The Million Dollar Highway section connects Ouray and Silverton and is lined with many small adventure towns and ghost mining villages.