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Letters: Can Vail have too many lifts?

Compiled by Vail Daily staff
Vail CO, Colorado

Help the hungry

On behalf of the Vail Police Department, Salvation Army, Resource Center of Eagle County and the Food Rescue Express, thanks to all the construction companies, businesses, markets, schools, and individuals who put a can or a grocery basket of food in the boxes scattered throughout Eagle County. The residents of Eagle County should be very proud to live in such a caring and giving community. I know my wife Cindy and I are.

We have come a long way from the first food drive seven years ago. The first goal of 25,000 pounds was very humbling to me when only 4,800 pounds came in. The goal this year was 100,000 pounds and we finished at 120,000 pounds. Does that mean the goal should be 150,000 pounds or more? I think we should make it 200,000 pounds and make sure everyone in Eagle County will never go hungry. The statistics on hunger are staggering in our own country and Eagle County is no exception. The real thing that bothers me is the children who go to school hungry in our own backyard. Just because you don’t see it or read about it, believe me it is happening right here in Eagle County.

The Salvation Army, Resource Center of Eagle County, Food Rescue Express, The Loafs and Fishes Community Dinners and many other agencies in our community help our friends and neighbors in need everyday of the year. Please open up your wallets and resources to help these fine agencies assist others this holiday season. Let us all make a great effort to ensure everyone has a great holiday season.

Again, thanks to a great community and have the best holiday season!

Moses Gonzales

Vail Police Department

Save the Back Bowls

We are writing because we are passionately opposed to putting high-speed lifts in the Back Bowls. We do not believe ourselves to be part of the group categorized in the paper as “always opposed to change.” We welcomed the recent replacement of chair 10, believing it will make it a more usable area, and because it is already a bump area, the lift will not ultimately change the type of terrain there.

Conversely, high-speed lifts in the Back Bowls will ruin the only unique and special thing about Vail. Its precious powder and bowl terrain will become just another crowded, overskied, bumped-out area with presumably more grooming. It will be even worse than China Bowl and Blue Sky, due to its direct accessibility. Vail is already bashed as an intermediate area ” this will only make it more bland.

There must be a part a Vail that is preserved for skiers who appreciate crud and variable conditions, as well as deep powder in a semi-backcountry setting. We believe the people polled in favor of these changes are not such skiers.

We have watched developers transform what used to be the “town” of Vail with little regard for the original charm and vision. We have watched the change from a mountain run by skiers with the priority being a quality experience, to a mountain being run by corporate executives with the priority being skier-day numbers, thereby significantly diminishing the Friday-Sunday ski experience for both destination guests and locals.

We have watched as the heart of the community has moved from Vail to downvalley towns with commuters.

But, through all of it, we have maintained that the mountain (the Back Bowls) has been worth it.

Kristen and Fraser Horn

Minturn

Not another lift!

Once again the idea of two lifts in the Sun Up and Sun Down area on Vail Mountain comes up. And once again I find myself scratching my head in disbelief and wondering why we need a second lift.

The idea of replacing Vail’s chair 5 is possibly a little overdue and maybe it is justified. But I think that adding another lift is just not necessary or warranted. The Seldom, Never, and O.S. runs are “underused” and that is exactly why I love to ski that area of the mountain.

To make laps in that area you have to ride chair 5, ski down to chair 3 and then traverse back out to that area. If I wanted to ski bumps everyday instead of soft snow I would ski bump runs, but instead I love the challenge of finding “the goods.” There are very few spots on the mountain that have good snow a couple of days after a storm, and as residents of this valley we need to try and hold on to those areas because frankly that is why all of us are here.

I also realize that the other reason we are here is to cater to the guests of the valley, but that doesn’t mean we have to sacrifice all of the good snow on the mountain. Half of the fun of skiing is exploring the mountain and finding fresh snow. We live in an instant gratification society and if you are too lazy to find good snow on your own, you don’t deserve to ski it.

I will get off my soapbox and end by saying I completely agree with replacing Vail’s chair 5, but another lift is completely asinine. If you want to suck the rest of the soul out of Vail, put in another fancy restaurant and add as many lifts as possible. You might as well put lifts in East Vail and cut down all of the trees so we can all ski bumps everyday all day. For that matter, let’s hire a couple hundred employees to carry everyone’s skis up Bridge Street from the buses. But I digress.

If it came down to a vote, you could count on me to vote no and campaign as hard as I could to get everyone else to vote the same.

P.S. A copy of this letter was also sent to the Forest Service.

Rick Bell


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