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Breckenridge Town Council may ask the U.S. Forest Service to delay Peak 6 approval pending completion of a lynx study

A map showing one of the alternatives for the proposed Peak 6 expansion at Breckenridge Ski Area. Click for a full-size version.

Town council and Summit County Commissioners will finalize formal comments on controversial ski area expansion proposal

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — Based on a draft comment letter to the Forest Service, the Breckenridge Town council is prepared to take a strong stance on the proposed Peak 6 expansion at Breckenridge Ski Area, asking the agency to set a cap on daily skier visits and delay approval of the Peak 6 plan until a ski area lynx study at Silverton Mountain has been completed.

The draft letter is up for discussion at the Aug. 23 town council meeting beginning at about 3:45 p.m. The draft letter also questions whether the Forest Service preferred alternative includes enough legitimate intermediate terrain to accommodate the stated purpose of the expansion, which is to disperse skiers and alleviate crowding on existing terrain.

The council’s position probably won’t satisfy some critics of the Peak 6 proposal, who had hoped that the council would wholly endorse a no-action alternative, included by the Forest Service as a baseline against which to measure the impacts of the other two action alternatives.

As discussed at a council work session two weeks ago, the letter also asks the Forest Service and the ski area to define a daily on-mountain capacity as a target for the ski area not to exceed, and leaves it up to the agency and the resort to figure out how to stay under that cap. Continue reading

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