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Durango welcomes Natural Selection Tour in February

Durango is thrilled the Natural Selection Tour is making its way to town this month. It’s a monumental event as it marks the first time our backcountry terrain will be showcased on an international stage. Visit Durango has been working alongside Purgatory Mountain Resort, Purgatory Snowcat Adventures and Purgatory Snowmobile Adventures to bring this event to Durango.

The Natural Selection Tour is a prestigious global snowboarding competition that showcases the world’s top riders in a series of backcountry events. It was created by legendary snowboarder Travis Rice, and its inaugural event was held in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, in 2021. This year, the tour has expanded to include Durango as one of its qualifying locations.

The tour is not just about showcasing top-notch athletes, it’s also about celebrating a love for nature and pushing the boundaries of what is possible on a snowboard.

Our terrain is unmatched, with pristine backcountry runs, steep chutes and open bowls that are perfect for freestyle backcountry riding. Rice recently visited Durango to scout venue locations, and he described our mountains as “world-class” and “A+ freestyle backcountry terrain.”

There is a thriving winter sports community here in Durango. Our town is home to passionate skiers, snowboarders and other outdoor adventurers who love nothing more than exploring our beautiful backcountry. The community has a strong sense of camaraderie and support and is excited to welcome the Natural Selection Tour and showcase our incredible terrain to the world.

Durango DUEL riders

Nils Mindnich is from the USA and has become a force to be reckoned with in the snowboarding world. Victor Daviet, hailing from France, is known for his natural and effortless style on the mountain. We can’t wait to see them in action and witness their mastery of the backcountry terrain.


It's not just about the competition. The Natural Selection Tour also aims to promote sustainable practices and raise awareness about environmental issues facing our planet. As we continue to enjoy and appreciate the beauty of nature through winter sports, it's important to be mindful of its preservation.

Snow safety

Riding in the backcountry opens up a new set of risks and dangers that require immense training, skills, and experience.

Natural Selection Tour will not only bring excitement to our town but also inspire more people to experience the adrenaline rush of backcountry riding. Our area has many educational and guided options for those looking to ride in the backcountry including Purgatory Snowcat Adventures, San Juan Expeditions and many more. When you are interested in taking your riding into the backcountry, you should seek out professional guide services and training well in advance of your first backcountry experience.

We invite you to the official Meet N’ Greet event from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at the DoubleTree Hotel in Durango where you can rub elbows with these elite athletes. Get your free tickets at http://tinyurl.com/mun8vxs8.

Also, tune into Red Bull TV in late February for this historic event and experience the thrill of watching these elite athletes push the boundaries of what’s possible on a snowboard. The qualifying event in Durango will determine whether Nils or Victor move on to the final stages of the tour in British Columbia, Canada, so you can expect nothing but high-intensity action and jaw-dropping stunts.

John Ragozzino is marketing and sales director at Visit Durango.