When winter fever strikes Fort Lewis College, there's only one cure: Get outside.
Fortunately, here in beautiful and rugged southwestern Colorado there are plenty of places and ways to get out-of-doors, with adventures suited to any and every skill level. And at FLC and in Durango -- where the Colorado lifestyle thrives -- there are plenty of others excited to head out there with you.
Members of Outdoor Pursuits can check out just about any
gear they need to enjoy the snow.
Get started at Outdoor Pursuits
Here when people look at mountains, they don't just say "pretty," they say GO! And going is what Outdoor Pursuits is all about.
Recreation Services' most popular student program, OP makes getting outside easy, loaning members outdoor equipment for almost any adventure, including skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and backcountry gear, as well as winter camping gear. OP also offers frequent clinics, movies, and guided backcountry outings for all abilities.
The program also maintains an alpine ski cabin deep in the San Juan Mountains, and members have free access to the 18 km of trails at the Nordic Center at Durango Mountain Resort.
Learn more about Outdoor Pursuits here.
Compete with ski & snowboard teams
If you're the competitive type, Fort Lewis College fields both a ski team and a snowboard team as intercollegiate club sports. Like all club sports, the Ski Club and Snowboard Club are open to any student with equipment and a craving to carve turns.
The Ski Club is the longest running club sport at Fort Lewis, hitting the slopes and running gates for more than 30 years. The team competes in the Rocky Mountain Division of the United States Collegiate Ski & Snowboard Association, facing schools including Colorado State University, University of Colorado, and Colorado College.
The Snowboard Club travels to races around the region, where team members compete for individual points toward qualifying for national competition through the United States of America Snowboard Association. The club welcomes all skill levels and both competitive and non-competitive members.
Learn more about the Ski Club here.
Learn more about the Snowboard Club here.
Durango Mountain Resort, considered Durango's home
mountain, is only 35 minutes from campus
(photo courtesy of DMR).
Ride world-class snow right nearby
If you want to experience that famous Colorado powder, you don't have to go far. Our own San Juan Mountains are home to two major resorts and two smaller -- but big-snow -- ski areas.
Closest by is Purgatory Ski Area, at Durango Mountain Resort. A quick 25 miles north of Durango, the ski area features two terrain parks and 85 runs on 1,325 skiable acres ranging from green to double-black, all backdropped by the stunning Twilight Range. Durango Mountain Resort also offers discounted season passes to college students.
For more information, visit durangomountainresort.com.
Telluride Ski Resort sits on the north side of the San Juan Mountains, but is well worth the drive. Starting from the beautiful downtown of historic Telluride, the ski area rises 3,500 vertical feet and is surrounded by the dramatic peaks of the San Juan Mountains -- which also help create the weather that feeds Telluride's bowls, steeps, glades, half-pipes and terrain parks with an average of 325 inches of snow each year.
Learn more about Telluride at tellurideskiresort.com.
For less glam and more pow, locals like to head two of Colorado's snowiest -- and smallest -- ski areas, Wolf Creek Ski Area and Silverton Mountain.
Wolf Creek Ski Area is 75 miles east of Durango, just over the Continental Divide on Wolf Creek Pass. Since 1939, the family-owned area has been serving up an annual average of 465 inches of Colorado powder. Wolf Creek owes its long season (usually October through May) and big dumps to its extreme altitude: its base lies at 10,300 feet and the summit crests at 11,900 feet.
Learn more at wolfcreekski.com.
Silverton Mountain is an experts-only lift-served backcountry area an hour north of campus, featuring extreme high-country terrain and lots of snow. From the area's one chair, skiers can hike to 13,487 feet for a 3,000-foot drop through couloirs, bowls, and glades.
More information is available at silvertonmountain.com.