The Sherpa Sustainability Institute is located in Durango, Colorado

Durango, Colorado

Durango has over 300 days of sunshine!  Tucked away in the southwest corner of Colorado, in the Four Corners region, it is a transition zone between semi-arid desert and the San Juan mountain range.  The summer daytime temps in the 70's/80's, nighttime lows in the 50’s.  And winter daytime temps in the high 30’s, nighttime lows in the 20’s.

It's a small ski town of approximately 17,000 people of almost 7 square miles.  It's a close community of sustainable farms, ranches, and enterprises, including Fort Lewis College.

The surrounding area includes the Weminuche Wilderness Area - 490,000 acres, elevation 8,000 – 14,000 feet, wilderness cut by 80 miles of the Continental Divide Trail & 21 miles of the Colorado Trail, peaks over 13,000 feet with three towers in the Needles surpassing 14,000 feet.  And, Mesa Verde National Park, Four Corners Monument, Chimney Rock National Monument, Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, the Anasazi Heritage Museum, Hovenweep, Canyon of the Ancients National Monument and the Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Park are all within a short drive.

The Environment


Durango is nestled in the Animas River Valley surrounded by the San Juan Mountains. The Animas River—El Río de las Animas (River of Souls)—runs through downtown and boasts gold medal fly fishing waters, and is popular for whitewater rafting, kayaking and canoeing. Durango is also popular for outdoor activities like hiking, mountain biking, road biking, backpacking, slacklining, rock climbing, hunting, off-roading, year-round fishing, and golfing.

The Community


Main Avenue cuts through Downtown Durango, home to boutiques, restaurants, tourist and gift shops, lounges and other businesses.  Durango's two oldest hotels (in business since the 1880's), The General Palmer and The Strater Hotel, are both at the South end of Main Avenue, one and two blocks away from the train station, respectively. Durango has more restaurants per capita than Denver. Main Avenue is walked by thousands of tourists each week, making it one of the most popular shopping and relaxing tourist destination in the Four Corners region.

The Institute


Sherpa Sutainability Institute is located in downtown Durango at the North end of Main Ave.  The learning center has ample space for class room learning and activity, and office space for researchers and administrators.  The institute is proud to be a part of the historical importance of this location and is involved in many community outreach activities.