Colorado ski resort dispute starts over |

Colorado ski resort dispute starts over

Allen Best
Vail, CO Colorado

WOLF CREEK PASS, Colorado ” It’s now official. Environmental groups, including Colorado Wild, have dropped their lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service, which has agreed to take another stab at its environmental study of a road that would connect a real estate development to the base of the Wolf Creek Ski Area.

But whether the Forest Service will draw any different conclusion is the key question. A press conference called by the U.S. Forest Service suggested it won’t.

“Federal law,” said Dan Dallas, supervisor of the Rio Grande National Forest, “requires this agency to provide reasonable access over public land to private property.” The Forest Service, he added, has no jurisdiction over private land.

Colorado Wild has argued that allowing the road will harm the surrounding national forest. Developer Bill Joe “Red” McCombs plans more than 2,000 housing units, most of which are time shares.

The Pitcher family, which has owned the ski area since the 1970s, was a partner with McCombs in the real-estate development, but dropped out in the late 1990s. The two have suits and counter-suits against one another.

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