Posted on February 6, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
Public comment sought on draft EIS
Arapahoe Basin Ski Area is one step closer to gaining final approval for a 492-acre expansion that would include a new lift in the Beavers area. The ski area plan also calls for replacing Pallavicini chairlift, removing the Norway chairlift and adding a surface lift to ferry skiers and snowboarders to the popular backside Montezuma Bowl terrain.
Last week, the U.S. Forest Service released a draft environmental study for the planned projects. The agency will take public comments on the draft EIS through March 21. More information is online at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=41664. A public meeting on the draft Eis will be held at The Keystone Center (1628 St John Rd., Dillon, CO 80435) on March 2, 2016 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
In a cover letter released with the draft study, White River National Forest Supervisor said he is currently evaluating the recreational benefits of these projects against the identified resource impacts these project may create. Continue reading
Filed under: Arapahoe Basin, business, Colorado, Environment, public lands, Ski Resorts, skiing and riding, Summit County Colorado, Summit County news, White River National Forest | Tagged: A-Basin expansion, Arapahoe Basin ski area, Colorado skiing, skiing, Summit County skiing, The Beavers | 1 Comment »
Posted on January 17, 2016 by Bob Berwyn
Filed under: public lands, ski industry, Ski Resorts, US Forest Service | Tagged: FOIA, public lands, Red McCombs, ski industry, U.S. Forest Service, Village at Wolf Creek, Wolf Creek Pass, Wolf Creek ski area | 3 Comments »
Posted on December 18, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
‘We’re in this time of visible climate change …’
Land recovery after a ski slope is abandoned can be starkly different depending on how it was constructed. The graded run, left, was abandoned 13 years before with little sign of new vegetation. The cleared run, right, was abandoned 10 years before and plant life is abundant. Photo courtesy Andrew Burt/Jessica Hite.
Ski resorts around the West like to brag about their size in terms of skiable acreage, but what they don’t tell you is that, trails that are graded with bulldozers don’t recover well if the ski area is abandoned.
Trails that are merely cleared, with runs and some ground cover left in place, however, tend to grow back relatively quickly to blend in with the surrounding forest areas, according to a study published this month the Journal of Applied Ecology.
The findings have implications for land managers, especially winter sports experts with the U.S. Forest Service, who administer the public lands where much of the region’s skiing takes place. Continue reading
Filed under: Environment, public lands, ski industry, Ski Resorts | Tagged: abandoned ski areas, Environment, land use, public lands, ski industry | Leave a comment »
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 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 16, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
The ultimate ski cabin?
Road construction to a private inholding at Breckenridge Ski Area could begin this summer.
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO —The U.S. Forest Service has authorized construction of a 1,300-foot road across national forest lands at Breckenridge Ski Resort to access a privately owned 10-acre parcel.
The inholding was bought last year by a Breckenridge resident who plans to build a cabin on the tract, located located near the top of the Zendo Chair and base of the Kensho chair on Peak 6. Continue reading
Filed under: Breckenridge Ski Resort, Dillon Ranger District, public lands, US Forest Service, White River National Forest | Tagged: Breckenridge Ski Area, inholding, public lands, Tailor Lode, White River National Forest | Leave a comment »