Posted inNews, Outdoors, Technology

“We can’t broadcast through a mountain”: Digital dead zones getting in the way of Colorado’s first responders

BAYFIELD — There’s a digital dead zone in Fire Chief Bruce Evans’ 282-square-mile district in southwest Colorado, right up where the Upper Pine River Fire Protection District brushes against wildland and national forest. No cell coverage. No internet access. Even the radio goes quiet. For Sean Caffrey, at the Crested Butte fire department, signal cuts […]

Posted inClimate, Environment, News, Water

A Colorado town nearly ran out of drinking water. Experts say it’s a window into the future.

DOVE CREEK — Running out of drinking water was once unthinkable for Dove Creek, a 600-person town in southwest Colorado.   Not anymore.   A two-decade drought and years of poor snowpack in the San Juan Mountains have depleted McPhee Reservoir. A canal that delivers water to Dove Creek and growers nearby was shut down months early […]

Posted inGrowth, Housing, News

“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 inGrowth, Housing, News

Housing in small Colorado towns is “damn near a crisis.” But the solution isn’t as easy as just building more.

MANCOS — There’s no affordable housing in Mancos. Zero rental units. Nearly no houses on the market. The town’s school district struggles to hire teachers because they can’t find a place to live. It’s the same story with the town government, the hospital and the nursing home.  It’s an “overwhelming issue” for the town of […]

Posted inEconomy, Growth, Housing, News

“It’s scary”: The housing shortage has reached a crisis point in southwest Colorado

DURANGO — Pagosa Springs paramedic Matt Robison was living with two friends in a 1,200-square-foot house until this summer — when his rent would have leapt 60%, to $2,400 a month. Robison hit the road, working wildland fires and living out of his truck.   Sixty miles west, professor Rebecca Clausen has heard from faculty at […]

Posted inNews

Tribes’ ancestral remains return home from Finland to Colorado’s Mesa Verde National Park

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Tribal leaders have reburied the remains of their ancestors that were taken more than a century ago from what’s now a national park in Colorado. A Swedish researcher unearthed the remains of about 20 people and more than two dozen funerary objects from southwestern Colorado in 1891. They eventually became part of […]

Posted inBusiness, COVID, News, Outdoors

How Colorado’s independent Wolf Creek ski area plans to navigate a coronavirus reopening

Almost 4,200 Wolf Creek skiers responded to a survey sent by the ski area’s owner, Davey Pitcher.  They were largely from New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma as well as surrounding communities like Pagosa Springs and South Fork. Typical Wolf Creek skiers. They all said, heck yeah they wanted to ski this season. And they were […]