Unauthorized road construction by Vail Resorts' contractors has prompted the U.S. Forest Service to force a delay of opening the much-anticipated Bergman Bowl at Keystone until to the 2023-2024 season.
Work had already begun this spring to prepare 550 acres of intermediate alpine terrain for the coming 2022-2023 season. That work including installation of a new high-speed six-pack chairlift.
However, in July, the Forest Service discovered that crews had built a temporary construction road beyond permit boundaries, and issued a cease-and-desist order until damage to fragile treeline and above-treeline tundra was repaired.
In hopes of keeping the much-touted project on schedule, Keystone officials quickly worked up a restoration plan to remove damage done by the road and reclaim a stream crossing that had been filled in by crews.
Despite saying the restoration project was one of the best they had ever seen, officials of the White River National Forest said further environmental review was necessary before work on the lift could resume.
That led Vail Resorts to announce that Bergman Bowl, long a hike-to and snowcat favorite off the top of North Peak, will remain as such until next summer's construction season. Other parts of the project, including expansion of the Outpost restaurant atop North Peak, placing snowmaking equipment in the area and doing trail work will continue this summer.
The nation's largest ski and snowboard resort conglomerate and purveyor of the Epic Pass, Vail Resorts continues to work on several other lift installation projects. At Vail Mountain, a new high-speed four-pack is set to run from the base of High Noon Express to the ridge-top Wildwood Restaurant. On the front, Game Creek Bowl enthusiasts will get up quicker with a replacement detachable six-seater on the same line as the old lift.
In neighboring Summit County, Vail-owned Breckenridge will give beginners and ski school-ers more runs to lap out of Peak 8 base with a replacement of Rip's Ride fixed-grip with a high-speed four-pack.
At Vail-owned resorts around Lake Tahoe, skiers and riders who go to Northstar California should expect to see a six-pack replacement of the four-seater Comstock Lift at the busy mid-mountain. And, visitors to Heavenly Mountain should be able to get to the top of North Bowl in almost half the ride time with a new high-speed chair.
However, Park City Mountain visitors and loyalists will have to wait for two replacement chairlifts at a busy juncture near the crossover to the Canyons area, as local citizens convinced the planning board to reevaluate the project. Vail Resorts has said it will appeal.
For almost 60 years, beginners from Colorado's Front Range have cut their skiing and riding teeth at Loveland Ski Area as one of the closest mountains to the Denver area. And, the Loveland Valley section of the resort -- separated from the main base area with its own parking and lodge -- has been the go-to spot from newbies to take their first turns and get the feel from sliding on skis or snowboards.
The creator of the Ikon Pass will invest more than $200 million this summer to further upgrade some of the 15 resorts it owns for skiers and riders in the 2020-21 season.
The largest ski and snowboard resort owner in the world enters its second decade of its expansion with a modest slate of on-mountain upgrades and a couple of portfolio-wide improvements.
It looks to be a busy summer at resorts owned by Denver-based Alterra Mountain Co. as the firm begins to catch up on much-needed improvements both on and off the mountain.
After a decade of uncertainty, Tamarack Resort appears to have found financial stability and will embark on major improvements to the village and mountain facilities in the 2019 off-season.