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Forest Service Releases Decision for Copper Mountain Resort Recreation Enhancement Projects
The White River National Forest has released a Decision Notice (DN) for ski area projects proposed at Copper Mountain Resort (Copper). The selected alternative best meets the Purpose and Need of the project while balancing effects to natural and social resources. All authorized projects would be located either within Copper’s existing Special Use Permit area or on private land. Construction on projects is expected to start summer of 2017.
"We are excited to make these projects a reality and improve year-round opportunities at Copper Mt. Resort" stated Bill Jackson, Dillon District Ranger. “Improved snowmaking will provide needed coverage for early season ski and ride access unique to Copper. The mountain coaster and mountain biking trail will bolster and diversify the summer opportunities and further connect the public to their national forest.”
The decision was based on findings in the project Environmental Assessment (EA), which analyzed the potential environmental effects of implementing these projects.
The authorized projects include:
- construction and operation of an alpine coaster near Center Village;
- construction of an intermediate level mountain biking trail approximately 1 mile in length;
- installation of snowmaking infrastructure to provide an additional 20 acres of snowmaking coverage on West Encore and Upper Collage trails;
- construction of a comprehensive drainage management system to improve stream health and handle water runoff more efficiently.
“The ski areas on the White River National Forest are important gateways to public lands. The projects at Copper provide us with a unique opportunity to connect many people to the national forests in a confined, developed area,” stated Scott Fitzwilliams, Forest Supervisor. “The result of this decision is providing world-class recreational access while improving resources like stream health from current conditions.”
Project documents available for download can be found on the White River National Forest website at http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/fs-usda-pop.php/?project=48633