U.S. Forest Service seeks comment on Eldora expansion
Written byERICA MELTZER, Longmont Times-Call
Managers of Boulder County's only ski area say the proposed expansion of Eldora Mountain Resort will mean better skiing, shorter lift rides and improved facilities. But part of the proposal -- extending the ski area's boundaries toward Middle Boulder Creek -- has neighbors and environmental activists raising concerns about the impact on wildlife and water quality.
The U.S. Forest Service has accepted Eldora's master plan and is now in the beginning stages of doing an environmental impact statement. There will be two public meetings later this month on the scope of the environmental impact statement: one on July 18 at the Boulder Ranger District Office and one on July 19 at the Nederland Community Center.
The master plan aims to increase the amount of intermediate terrain available to skiers and to reduce the amount of the mountain that needs to be closed during high winds.
The plan calls for a number of upgrades, including two new lifts -- Placer Express and Moose Glade Express -- near the existing Indian Peaks and Corona lifts. The two new lifts would start several hundred vertical feet lower than the existing lifts, extending skier access to the edge of Middle Boulder Creek. The two new lifts also would be high-speed, detachable, six-person lifts, which are heavier than the lifts now used at Eldora, and therefore, more stable in windy conditions.
The master plan also calls for adding seven new trails that would funnel skiers to the new lift stations and opening up two new gladed runs.VIEW ORIGINAL ARTICLE