Durango, CO--With a name meaning “water town” in Basque, the southwestern Colorado town of Durango celebrates the reopening of its beloved Animas River. The Animas is one of the area’s prime water playgrounds, and the incident at the Gold King Mine in San Juan County brought the river into the national and international spotlight. Visitors and locals alike are embracing the news that the water was reopened for recreation--just in time to cool off with end-of-summer fun.

La Plata County Sheriff Sean Smith made the decision to open the river to recreational use with a health advisory from the state health department. Sheriff Smith said, “My primary concern is the public health and safety of our community. With the release of preliminary results from the state health department and its accompanying recommendation, I am opening our river for recreation effective Friday, August 14, 2015 at noon with the health advisory.” The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment collected and analyzed water quality and sediment from the Animas River and the data indicates that the river has returned to pre-indcident, stable conditions that are not a concern for human health during typical recreational exposure.

A four-season Colorado mountain destination, Durango’s wide range of activities and breathtaking scenic beauty earns the town the claim: “A Dozen Vacations in One Destination”. From ancient ruins at Mesa Verde National Park to recreation adventures at Purgatory Resort, award-winning restaurants and craft brewpubs to art galleries and the historic Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, jeep trail tours to rafting the Animas River or paddling at Vallecito Lake, Durango offers a wide variety of activities for a refreshing and inspiring end-of-summer vacation.

Sneak in a final summer getaway complete with wild flowers and wild waters, sunshine and celebration, before the leaves change and snow flurries cover the mountains. Welcome to Durango!


Upcoming events (www.durango.org):
August 29: San Juan Brewfest, Thirsty 13 Half Marathon September 4-7 – Four Corners Motorcycle Rally

September 8 & 9 – The 'Chuckwagon Jamboree' at Bar D Chuckwagon September 12 – Durango Dirt Fondo

September 19 & 20 – Durango Autumn Arts Festival

September 24 – Carbon Leaf live at Henry Strater Theatre

September 26 & 27 – Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Fall Photographers Train September 26 & 27 – Oktoberfest


About the Durango Area Tourism Office

The Durango Area Tourism Office is a not for profit organization operating with the mission to promote Durango and La Plata County’s multitude of tourism attractions, events and services. 1-800-525-8855, www.durango.org

Like us at “visitdurango” on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.