Durango Mountain Resort announced today that James Coleman, a local Durango businessman, finalized the purchase of the resort. Coleman disclosed that his first order of business is to change the name of Durango Mountain Resort back to “Purgatory” Resort and use the ski area’s popular “retro” logo with the red and white inverted triangles.
When the ski area was first founded in 1965, it was called Purgatory, and Coleman believes that this name and all it represents have held a special place in the hearts of passholders and guests for 50 years.
“Like many of the locals and our long-time guests, I’ve always known this mountain as Purgatory, and with next winter being our 50th anniversary, we believe it’s appropriate to officially change the resort’s name back to Purgatory,” stated Coleman.
Purgatory’s 50th anniversary will be dedicated to honoring loyal passholders, longtime guests and both current and alumni employees with an entire season of reunion events and festivities celebrating the resort’s rich history and longtime impact on the community.
Purgatory is also partnering with Fort Lewis College and numerous local businesses to create the Purgatory Collection, which will include a series of historical exhibits, an anniversary book and other memorabilia that will honor the history of the resort and those who helped make it what it was and is today.
“One of my first memories of skiing is at Purgatory when I was a teenager,” says Coleman. “I have dreamed of owning Purgatory someday, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to share my passion of skiing and help take it to the next level while improving the mountain’s skiing and summer recreational experiences.”
Coleman is an avid skier and mountain enthusiast who says he is committed to expediting the approved projects in the resort’s Master Development Plan, including adding new terrain and making lift improvements while maintaining a focus on value and the family-friendly nature of Purgatory.
Since 2000, Coleman has been the managing partner at Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort near Taos, N.M. Last year, Coleman entered into a strategic partnership with Los Alamos County and is in the process of acquiring Pajarito Mountain Ski Area in Los Alamos, N.M. Coleman is also in the process of acquiring Arizona Snowbowl, in Flagstaff, AZ, which is expected to be finalized by the end of the ski season.
Collectively, the four southwestern resorts – Purgatory, Snowbowl, Pajarito, and Sipapu – total more than 3,000 skiable acres, more than 200 trails, 26 lifts, and 13 terrain parks, all within a relatively convenient drive of each other. Guests will be able to have unlimited access to all four mountains on one season pass, the Purgatory Power Pass, which is slated to go on sale next month. Additional Power Pass products will also be available at the Arizona and New Mexico ski areas.
Chuck Cobb and the DMR shareholder group, including the Duncan family, announced last fall that they agreed to sell 100 percent of DMR’s resort assets to Coleman, including the membership interests of Durango Mountain Utilities, its local high-speed internet, VOIP, cable TV and propane utility. Cobb was the majority owner since 2000, and the Duncan family members were the original owners of the resort founded in 1965.
The Chuck Cobb and Duncan ownership group will continue to retain ownership of Durango Mountain Realty and the remaining community real estate holdings surrounding the resort. There are five other villages in the resort’s master plan where the real estate would remain under the ownership and development responsibility of Cobb and the existing shareholders, including the Duncan family. These areas include Engineer and Tacoma Village, which are currently under active development, and Boyce Lake, Greyrock and Base Camp Villages, which will be developed in the future.