Peak 8 Lift up for public comment | SummitDaily.com
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Peak 8 Lift up for public comment

DEVON O'NEIL
Special to the DailyThe proposed Breckenridge Summit Lift would carry riders up to the top of Peak 8. Chair 6 would be changed to a detachable quad chairlift.
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BRECKENRIDGE – The U.S. Forest Service wants your input on Breckenridge Ski Resort’s proposed Peak 8 Summit Lift. The plan has been formally submitted to the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), and is up for public comment in the first of two comment periods.The ski resort is proposing a low-capacity, detachable quad lift that would run to an unload station at 12,840 feet, about 60 feet from the summit of Peak 8.

It would be the highest chairlift in North America and serve most of the advanced terrain available now only to those willing to hike for their turns.Public comments must be received by the USFS or be postmarked by Oct. 28 to be considered. With regard to those comments, USFS winter sports administrator Joe Foreman said the USFS is looking for more than simple pro/con letters.

“It’s really important to deal with specific facts or issues – it’s not a vote,” Foreman said. “It doesn’t help us much if people just say they like it or they don’t.”Foreman said the issues the USFS is most interested to hear addressed include: visibility, recreation – will it add to their experience or will it detract from their experience, and environmental impacts – how will the project affect land, soil, water, vegetation, wildlife.The resort submitted the proposal for USFS district ranger Rick Newton’s approval. In turn, the USFS sent a detailed description of the project to 150 members of the public and published a legal notice on the beginning of the 14-day public comment period in Thursday’s Summit Daily News.

Once the comment period has ended, the USFS will process and consider all of the letters it receives, and publish an environmental assessment (EA) draft at the end of November. That will kick off an additional, 30-day public comment period.Foreman said he expects the USFS to release a final decision toward the end of January, at which time there will be a 45-day appeal period.Devon O’Neil can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 231, or at doneil@summitdaily.com.


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