Small but mighty is how its been described. With plenty of lung-burning climbs and hair-raising descents, the 15 kilometers of trails at the Durango Nordic Center provide enough terrain to satisfy even the most hard-core Nordic skier. However, the centers perfectly manicured corduroy and fleet of rental skis, also make it the perfect venue for the beginner or families, as well. Perched along a stunning canyon, the Nordic Center is also the perfect venue for a leisurely foray into the San Juans. Operated by the nonprofit Durango Nordic Club for the past several years, the center is now owned by Durango Mountain Resort, which plans to add new trails as well as a biathlon course. The center is open until 4 p.m. daily and offers cross country and skate ski rentals as well as lessons and clinics. Daily passes are $12 for all the aerobic and anaerobic exercise you can handle, or $125 for the season. For up-to-the-minute trail conditions or more information, call 385-2114. For a complete schedule of events and races, visit

A skate skier glides along the home stretch after a trip around
the Nordic Centers farflung North Loop. Helen Low, the new director of the Nordic Center, waxes skis
during some down time. Low replaced former longtime director,
InekeBoyce. Helen Low stands on the front porch of the warming hut/rental
shop on a recent sunny afternoon.