Lodge and ski area are both history
WINTER PARK – A lodge at one of Colorado’s first ski areas is no more. As ordered by the Forest Service, the 30,000-square-foot building at Berthoud Pass was reduced to rubble last week.The ski area, one of Colorado’s oldest, having opened in 1937, has operated only sporadically since the mid-1980s and not at all since 2001. In an age of mega-resorts, the Forest Service saw no future for the ski area and worried that the building would become a public safety issue. In its place the Forest Service plans a 5,000-square-foot structure that will include restrooms but no commercial operations.A group called Friends of Berthoud Pass found irony in the loss. “It’s ironic that after decades of innovation in the ski industry that we’re skiing the pass the same way our contemporaries did in the 1930s,” said Shan Sethna, the group’s executive director, in an interview with The Denver Post.Of course, we’re now skiing with metal edges, which do wonders for control.Silverton Brewery first since Prohibition beganSILVERTON – Silverton hasn’t had a brewery since Prohibition, when a federal constitutional amendment banned all alcohol in the United States form 1920 to 1933. But in further evidence of the town’s post-mining revitalization, the Silverton Brewery has opened in name, if not yet in frothy substance.The Silverton Standard explains that the business, lacking a liquor license, began its 21st century life dispensing shot glasses and T-shirts. The owner plans eventually to brew four types of beer on premises.
Fiery group to headline show in Winter ParkWINTER PARK – As bark beetles mow through the forests of lodgepole pine, Winter Park has been wary about the potential for the dead trees catching fire. Given that concern, the lead act for a musical festival called Hawgfest is somewhat surprising – Great White. The group’s use of pyrotechnics at a concert in 2003 resulted in a nightclub fire that killed 100 people.Ski pass awaiting most diligent summer hikerJACKSON HOLE, Wyo. – Many libraries have summer “bookworm” reading programs. In ski towns, it’s all about sweat. A case in point is Jackson Hole, where both of the ski areas have summer hiking programs.The older program is at Snow King Mountain, the small ski area adjacent to the town of Jackson. Participants track how many trips they run or hike up the 1,571-foot ski mountain. Now, a similar program is under way at the bigger Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The person who has climbed the most vertical feet using the resort’s 7.2-mile road at summer’s end will get a ski pass.EPA plans cleanup for mine near Crested ButteCRESTED BUTTE – The Environmental Protection Agency is mapping out a proposed Superfund site about 8 miles from Crested Butte.Gold, silver, and other minerals were mined at the site from 1931 until 1961, but the mine continues to discharge highly acidic water that contains arsenic, barium, and other heavy metals at elevated levels. The water ultimately flows through Crested Butte, although there the minerals have been diluted.
Earl Holding shifting plans for Sun ValleySUN VALLEY, Idaho – Earl Holding, owner of the Sun Valley Co., has shifted plans. He has decided he wants to start within two years on a 125- to 175-room hotel on the main parking lot at the base of the ski area, following by a 9- and possibly 18-hole golf course on adjacent property.Ultimately, Sun Valley Co. plans 2,100 housing units in a mixture of single-family, hotel rooms, and condominiums on its slope-side land. Meanwhile, public opposition has altered plans for gondolas. Still planned is a new gondola to the ski resort from the site of some of this future real estate development, a project called River Run, but two other gondolas have been put on hold.Woman drowns after ATV plunges into riverPEMBERTON, B.C. – A 34-year-old woman drowned after the ATV she was driving from her house plunged 15 feet from a suspension bridge into a fast-moving river.She attempted to swim to shore, but was swept away by the strong current before kayakers who witnessed the fall could get to her, reports Whistler’s Pique. She had worked at the Whistler and Blackcomb ski areas and is survived by two children, ages 10 and 12, as well as a boyfriend. She was, said friends, the life of the party.
Revelstoke a place of many confusing signalsREVELSTOKE, B.C. – Revelstoke is a place of confusing signals. The town in British Columbia’s interior lost 8 percent of its population from 1999 to 2001, mostly due to layoffs of workers on the Canadian Pacific Railway. In turn, houses sat empty and the town was able to boast of “affordable mountain living.”Ah, but the affordable part is disappearing. The Revelstoke Times Review reports that some houses have doubled in value in the past few years. About 60 percent of the buyers are second home purchasers from Banff, Canmore and Whistler, as well as points more distant – even Toronto and Europe.Revelstoke’s existing heli-skiing, snowmobiling and other mountain-based attractions are part of the draw, but an even stronger stimulant to the real estate market is the possibility of a major new ski area. The ski area could ultimately offer North America’s great vertical drop.”The bargains are gone,” real estate agent Uldis Bokis told the Revelstoke Times Review. Future pricing, he added, will depend largely on the progress of the resort development. “Once there’s steel in the ground for the hill, then we’ll see prices increase again,” he said.Site preferred for new airport for Sun ValleyHAILEY, Idaho – Ketchum-Sun Valley interests have settled on a location 37 miles from Sun Valley as the preferred site for a new airport. This is slightly more distant than the airports that serve Vail, Steamboat, and Crested Butte.The existing airport is at Hailey, located much closer. However, consultants have said the airport cannot meet Federal Aviation Administration safety standards without expanding outside the existing airport site. That possibility was vetoed by both the Hailey City Council and the Blaine County Commission.The preferred site is actually in the next county, Lincoln County.
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