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Mountain Policies

Your safety on the mountain is our highest priority at Purgatory Resort. Because there are some risks inherent to snowsports, we encourage you to educate yourself about the risks, and to adhere to responsible skier/rider conduct. Purgatory Mountain Patrol, Mountain Safety (Yellow Jackets) and Mountain Management enforce skier safety on Purgatory Mountain every day this season.

They can also answer any questions about mountain safety policies.

Purgatory Resort’s mountain safety program includes safety education, awareness and enforcement. The program is built on “Your Responsibility Code”, the Ten Foot Rule, and the Colorado Ski Safety Act.

Know The Code—Your Responsibility Code

The National Ski Areas Association established “Your Responsibility Code” in 1966 as a code of ethics for all skiers on the mountain. The code reflects not only skier safety, but snowboarder and lift safety as well. Ultimately, safe skiing and snowboarding is each guest’s responsibility.

  1. Always stay in control and be able to stop or avoid objects.
  2. People ahead of you have the right of way.  It is your responsibility to avoid them.
  3. Do not stop where you obstruct the trail or are not visible from above.
  4. Whenever starting downhill or merging into a trail, yield to others.
  5. Always use devices to help prevent runaway equipment.
  6. Observe all posted signs and warnings. Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
  7. Prior to using any lift, you must know how to load, ride, and unload safely.

ski patrol lift sunnyThe Ten-Foot Rule

In order to minimize on-mountain accidents and enhance safety for our guests, Purgatory skiers/riders must stay outside a 10-foot radius of any and all other skiers/riders while in their path of decent.

By staying at least 10 feet away from other skiers/riders, the chances of a collision are reduced dramatically. The Ten Foot Rule also promotes respect and courtesy toward people of all ages and abilities on the mountain.

Purgatory Mountain Patrol, Mountain Safety (Yellow Jackets) and Mountain Management enforce the Ten Foot Rule in high traffic areas so that everyone has a safe experience at Purgatory Resort.

Colorado Ski Safety Act

Recognizing risks that are inherent in the sport, The Colorado legislature passed the Colorado Ski Safety Act, which describes inherent risks of the sport and relative responsibilities of the skier and the ski area.


Under Colorado law, a skier assumes the risk of any injury to person or property resulting from any of the inherent dangers and risks of skiing and may not recover from any ski area operator for any injury resulting from any of the inherent dangers and risks of skiing, including: changing weather conditions; existing and changing snow conditions; bare spots; rocks; stumps; trees; collisions with natural objects, man-made objects, or other skiers; variations in terrain; and the failure of skiers to ski within their own abilities.

The Ski Safety Act includes cliffs, extreme terrain, jumps and freestyle terrain as inherent dangers and risks of the sport.

View the entire Colorado Ski Safety Act

Learn more about safety on the mountain at www.nsaa.org.