Visiting Durango

Winter activities in Durango

Winter is a glorious time to visit Durango

There are no shortage of activities to enjoy during the winter months.

Ride the Train!

Winter is a magical time to ride the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, offering breathtaking views of the Animas Valley and snowclad peaks and frozen waterfalls. The train stops at Cascade Canyon where you can get out and walk around, have a snack, and take some memorable photos.  The trip is 26 miles each way, and takes about 5 hours. Excursions are available on the weekends of January and February. Midweek dates are available in March and April. More information available here.




Downhill Skiing

You don’t have to go far to hit the slops in Durango! Durango offers several options for skiing including our own intown ski hill at Chapman Hill ski area. It’s great for families and beginners. Chapman Hill offers both a beginner hill and more advanced area that are both accessed by a rope tow. More information available here.  

Purgatory Ski Resort is just 30 minutes north of Durango and provides 1,635 skiable acres with trails for all abilities.  Other options for skiing include Hesperus ski area located 11 miles west of Durango, and it offers 26 trails and 160 skiable acres. The season starts around Thanksgiving, depending on snowfall for the year. Ski and snowboard rentals are available in town at a variety of locations including Ski Barn, Second Avenue Sports, Purgatory Sports.




Cross Country Skiing

Durango offers many opportunities for Cross Country ski enthusiasts. When winter is in full swing you’ll find that getting out to ski is not too far away. Options include Hillcrest Golf Course up by Fort Lewis College, or you can travel a bit to La Plata Canyon, Vallecito, Andrews Lake or Molas Lake. Rentals for equipment are available in town at Second Avenue Sports for $25 a day or Ski Barn at $19 a day. To purchase skis, trust the folks at Gardenswartz Outdoors or used gear at Durango Outdoor Exchange.





If skiing isn’t your thing, then try snowshoeing. It’s a great way to get outside and an activity that anyone can excel at quickly! When the snow is right, you can visit most hiking trails on snowshoes. Great locations include: The Colorado Trail, Haviland Lake, La Plata Canyon, Molas and Vallecito.  Rent gear at Second Avenue Sports or at Ski Barn for just $20 for the day.





You don’t have to go far to find some fun sledding in Durango. When the snow is fresh, head down to Buckley Park for some great sledding or to Chapman Ice Rink. Purchase a sled downtown at Gardenswartz or Kroeger’s Ace Hardware.




Explore Downtown

Spend a day exploring Downtown Durango. Filled with many unique shops, galleries and restaurants, strolling Downtown is a great way to spend a winter day (or to relax after a day of skiing). Durango offers everything from unique boutiques to souvenir shops to Western apparel and more. And make sure to stop in at one of the many world-renowned galleries featuring everything from handmade jewelry, Native American art, to Western art and contemporary art.  Warm up at one of the many coffee shops along Main Avenue or pick up a sweet treat at Animas Chocolate Company or Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. Vist our directory for a full list of shopping options in Durango. 

After you shop ‘til you drop, you’ll find an abundance of restaurants to choose from up and down Main Ave. and East 2nd Ave. It’s known as a foodie paradise - everything from fine dining to fast and casual dining and everything in between.  Visit our dining guide to find just the right spot. The hardest part is knowing which one to choose first.





Chapman Hill Ice area offers public skate sessions during the week. Rent skates or skater aids or just bring your own. It’s a great activity for the whole family to enjoy. Join the fun on Friday night for Disco Night, where the lights go out and the music is up. It’s a perfect night activity that the kids always enjoy! Sessions are just $7, with your own skates or $10 per person with skate rental and or skater aids. Find out more here.




Walk on the River Trail

The Animas River Trail offers a great outdoor activity no matter the season. Stretching more than 7 miles, the trail meanders along the Animas River. It’s a great way to spend the afternoon and take in all the surrounding views. The City clears the trail after snowfall, so it’s a safe place to walk. If you’re lucky you might even spot a bald eagle or other wildlife. Click here for a map




Durango Craft Breweries, Wineries, and Distilleries

Any season is a great season for drinking beer especially when you are in Durango!  Our region is fortunate to have great options for craft beverages including breweries, wineries, and distilleries. Durango is home to five fantastic breweries, all with unique signature (and award-winning) brews that are sure to enthuse any beer lover. There are three breweries located downtown including Steamworks Brewing Co., Carver Brewing Company and Animas Brewing Company. Head up to the North Main District, to find our newest brewery, Durango Beer and Ice Company. If you’re seeking spirits, stop by Durango Craft Spirits in Downtown Durango, Durango’s first grain-to-glass distillery since Prohibition, offering innovative cocktails featuring spirits distilled from high quality regional ingredients. And for the wine lovers, stop by the quaint boutique winery located in the 600 block of Main Ave. Four Leaves Winery. The proprietors import the highest quality grapes and handcraft, blend all their own wines. Stop in for a wine tasting or pick up a bottle to take home. See our Beer Wine and Spirits tour for more information on each location.