Posted inNews, Outdoors, Outsider

Colorado’s independent ski areas are thriving in the shadow of dueling, consolidating resort giants

In the shadow of battling behemoths, smaller, independent ski areas are thriving.  “It’s not just that the big areas are crowded and skiers want to escape crowds,” said Bob Nicolls, the owner of Monarch ski area, which saw record visitation in 2021-22, with income for the ski area climbing 20% above the previous season. “I […]

Posted inColoradans, Education, Health, News, Outdoors, Outsider

These young adults are shredding, pedaling and climbing. Oh, and fighting cancer.

SILVERTON — Jesseca Collins was diagnosed with thyroid cancer on her 30th birthday on New Year’s Eve 2012. She had her first surgery a few months later.  “I went from this intense athlete to gaining 40 pounds and crawling around my room, crying when I had to put clothes on. I was so tired. The […]

Posted inBusiness, Climate, Culture, Environment, News, Outdoors, Water

PHOTOS: Short on powder, Colorado’s ski resorts let snowmakers rip

Ski resorts across the country are leaning more heavily on snowmaking guns as warmer, shorter winters threaten a business model based on snow. In Colorado, the reliance on man-made snow has been essential to the start of the 2021-22 ski season, with all of the state’s 13 major river basins reporting precipitation through November well […]

Posted inBusiness, News, Outdoors, Outsider

Snow may not be piling up at Colorado ski resorts this season, but anxiety sure is

It wasn’t that long ago that ski resort operators lost sleep over snowfall. Then they had to fret over once-in-a-lifetime protocols to limit the spread of contagion at their ski areas.  Now, the worries are stacked even deeper, with affordable housing, dwindling numbers of workers and ever-lengthening lift lines joining the perennial fretting over snow […]

Posted inNews

“Glorified homelessness”: Even tiny Silverton is experiencing the housing crisis that’s crushing mountain workers

SILVERTON — Julian Roberts is lighting a campfire on the outskirts of Silverton, wind whipping smoke toward the painted school bus where he lives with his fiancée.  He’s been camping out for weeks in the picturesque town of 600, nestled in a caldera among southwest Colorado’s highest peaks.  It was a choice at first. It […]

Posted inColoradans, COVID, Economy, Growth, News, Politics and Government

How divided is Silverton? Just ask one of the town’s six administrators who came and went in the past seven years.

The town of Silverton has a marketing slogan; “Real Town. Real People. Real Fun.” Add to that: Real Turmoil. One of the highest-altitude municipalities in the country and most remote communities in Colorado is in the midst of its latest spasm of small-town tumult. The sixth town administrator in seven years is stepping down this […]

Posted inBusiness, Growth, News, Outdoors, Politics and Government

Purgatory and Silverton Mountain float interest in Silverton’s community ski hill

Durango’s Mountain Capital Partners and local Silverton Mountain answered Silverton’s initial call for possible partners at the 16-acre Kendall Mountain ski area. And the two operators have different visions for the community ski hill.  Mountain Capital Partners, or MCP, which owns Purgatory and seven other ski areas in four states, sees opportunity in a proposal […]