Posted on August 26, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Morning alpenglow paints the summit of Breckenridge Ski Area.
New ballot measure will exclude season passes
FRISCO — The ski town showdown over a proposed lift-ticket tax in Breckenridge ended with a whimper rather than a bang, as the town and Vail Resorts reached a compromise on the issue.
According to a press release from the town, the language of the ballot measure seeking voter approval of the new tax will be tweaked to exclude season passes and summer lift tickets from what town officials have called an admissions tax. Continue reading
Filed under: Breckenridge, Breckenridge Ski Resort, Breckenridge town council, Colorado, ski industry, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news, Vail Resorts | Tagged: Breckenridge, Colorado, lift ticket tax, Summit County News, transportation, Vail Resorts | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 25, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Busy highway to be moved away from Dillon Reservoir
The new Highway 9 alignment will run where the recpath is now, while the recpath will be moved closer to the shore of Dillon Reservoir.
Some community discussion on this project at this Facebook post.
FRISCO — With Vail Resorts, Breckenridge and Summit County pledging more than $1 million combined toward Highway 9 upgrades, the Colorado Department of Transportation will be able to move ahead with widening the busy highway in the Iron Springs section, between Farmers Korner and Frisco.
CDOT had tabbed the four-laning of the highway as a high priority project that qualifies for accelerated construction and funding as long as there is a 20 percent match from local public and private partners. With that money now on the table, CDOT will be able to put the project up for bid this fall, with construction slated for 2016 and and 2017. Continue reading
Filed under: auto safety, Breckenridge, Colorado, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news | Tagged: Breckenridge, Highway 9, Summit County, transportation, Vail Resorts | 2 Comments »
Posted on August 13, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Zip lines, canopy tours and other attractions planned
A slice of the Tenmile Range that already feels the full brunt of industrial level recreation will see even more summer traffic after the U. S. Forest Service approved a huge expansion of new summer activities and facilities.
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — The U.S. Forest Service is on track to approve a huge expansion of summer activities at Breckenridge Ski Area that will accommodate up to 150,000 additional visitors during the summer season.
The agency this week released a final environmental study for the new installations and programs, along with a draft decision letter from White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams, who said he thinks the new facilities — including zip lines, canopy tours and challenge courses — will enhance public appreciation of national forest lands and the outdoors.
The proposal was controversial in Breckenridge, as some residents expressed concerns about drawing more visitors to the already crowded town. Other locals support the plan as a way of increasing tourism revenues and drumming up more business for local restaurants and shops. Continue reading
Filed under: Breckenridge Ski Resort, Colorado, Dillon Ranger District, Environment, public lands, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news, US Forest Service, White River National Forest | Tagged: Breckenridge Ski Area, canopy tours, public lands, summer recreation, U.S. Forest Service, White River National Forest, zip lines | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 28, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Breckenridge Ski Area. PHOTO COURTESY VAIL RESORTS/JACK AFFLECK.
Lift-ticket tax proposal stirs up bad blood
FRISCO — The long-running love-hate soap opera between Breckenridge and Vail Resorts took a nasty turn this week, as town officials vowed to forge ahead with putting an admissions (lift-ticket) tax on the November ballot, while the resort company questioned the town’s legal authority to do so.
At issue, according to Breckenridge, is an urgent need to address parking and transit issues — something the town should have started addressing 15 years ago. Based on community input, town officials say, the best path forward is to build a parking structure on F-Lot and to boost transit options.
To do that, the town wants to establish a new revenue stream by taxing lift tickets and other for-profit attractions. But Breckenridge and Vail Resorts have apparently failed to find common ground. In a press release, Mayor John Warner said ongoing negotiations have failed, leaving the town no option but to pursue voter approval for a new tax in the fall. Continue reading
Filed under: Breckenridge, Breckenridge Ski Resort, Breckenridge town council, Colorado, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news | Tagged: Breckenridge, Breckenridge news, Breckenridge Ski Area, parking, transit, Vail Resorts | Leave a comment »
Posted on July 19, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Construction of new dirt bike trails also under way
The Forest Service and volunteer partners are simultaneously building new dirt bike trails and closing forest roads in the Tenderfoot Mountain area.
FRISCO — The U.S. Forest Service is implementing restoration plans associated with approval of the new off-road motorcycle trail system on Tenderfoot Mountain.
The trail system, long a local point of contention, was approved last year based on a compromise agreement among stakeholders. The Forest Service has already started building part of the trail, with new single-track visible just a few feet above, and running parallel to Straight Creek Road.
This summer, Tenderfoot Mountain Road (#66.2B) in Frey Gulch will be closed and rehabilitated in order to improve water quality and improved habitat for fish and wildlife. The restoration of Frey Gulch was included as a condition the trail system permit. Continue reading
Filed under: Colorado, Dillon Ranger District, Environment, public lands, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news, US Forest Service, White River National Forest | Tagged: Dillon Ranger District, elk, Frey Gulch, lynx, public lands, Summit County News, Tenderfoot Mountain trails, White River National Forest, wildlife | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 3, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Flight crew suffers serious injuries
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — The pilot of a Flight For Life medical helicopter died in a fiery crash Friday afternoon at the St. Anthony Summit Medical Center near Frisco, Colorado.
Two other crew members, a paramedic and flight nurse, were seriously injured in the crash and were transported to hospitals in Denver, officials said in a press conference.
The Summit County coroner identified the pilot as 64-year-old Patrick Mahany, a Flight for Life pilot since 1987. Mahany was a Vietnam veteran and received a bronze star and a purple heart during his years of service. He was a loving father, grandfather and a very proud patriot.
The death is still under investigation and an autopsy has been scheduled. There is no further information available at this time.
Firefighters arrived on the scene in Summit County at about 1:45 p.m., finding the helicopter and two nearby vehicles engulfed in flames.
The helicopter crashed to the ground shortly after taking off. The accident will be investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board.
Filed under: Colorado, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news | Tagged: Flight For Life crash, Frisco Colorado, Frisco helicopter crash, helicopter crash, St. Anthony's Summit Medical Center | Leave a comment »
Posted on June 27, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Improved ratings could lower insurance rates
Firefighters responding to a June, 2011 wildfire in Keystone Gulch. @bberwyn photo.
FRISCO — Ongoing efforts to improve fire safety in Summit County have paid off, as local communities saw their fire-insurance ratings improve, according to the Lake Dillon Fire Protection District.
Firefighter training, fire-prevention efforts and community outreach and education all helped improve the scores from the Insurance Services Office, an industry data-collection group that assigns a public-protection classification from 1 to 10 for more than 48,000 communities nationwide.
The improvements in the ISO ratings, which officially take effect Sept. 1 and are recognized by most major insurance companies, potentially mean reductions in insurance rates for property owners. Continue reading
Filed under: Colorado, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news | Tagged: fire insurance, fire safety, Lake Dillon Fire Protection District, Summit County Colorado, Summit County News | Leave a comment »