James Coleman, managing partner of Purgatory and four other ski resorts, has purchased Colorado’s largest snowcat skiing operation.
Formerly known as San Juan Untracked, the 35,000-acre property just outside of Purgatory Resort, 25 miles north of Durango, will be renamed Purgatory Snowcat Adventures and open to skiiers and snowboarders this winter.
“We’re excited that Purgatory Snowcat Adventures is joining our family of resorts in the Southwest,” Coleman said in a news release. “Adding Colorado’s largest cat skiing operation to our portfolio of resorts extends the powder skiing experience and elevates it to another level.”
Coleman purchased the business from Dennis and Amanda Martin of Durango, who had owned it since 2013.
Dennis Martin, who competed on the Purgatory Freestyle Ski Team and rode BMX in California, will join the Purgatory Resort team as manager of Purgatory Snowcat Adventures.
“Amanda and I are very grateful for the opportunity to be part of the new Purgatory team that has been consistently dedicated to the betterment of Durango and the San Juan mountains skier experience,” he said in the news release. “We are excited about the collaboration with James and his team. James and I both love skiing and love Durango, so this merger will help both of us accomplish what is important to me, and that’s putting Durango on the map for amazing backcountry skiing.”
The area includes Grayrock Peak and Graysill Mountain, and stretches from Purgatory Resort to Rico, to Cascade Creek on the southwest side of Engineer Mountain.
Ski runs range from 500 feet to 2,500 vertical at elevations ranging from 10,000 to 12,500 feet. Visitors will ride a lift from Purgatory’s base and take a van into the backcountry.
Visitors are provided powder skis or snowboards, safety gear and a lunch for the guided experience.
Guides and snowcat drivers will remain on staff.
Purgatory Snowcat Adventures is now included in the 2016/2017 Power Pass for access to Coleman’s five resorts. Visit www.purgatoryresort.com for details.
Coleman recently bought the Hesperus Ski Area, and also owns Arizona Snowbowl, Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort and Pajarito Mountain.