By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — The U.S. Forest Service is on track to approve a huge expansion of summer activities at Breckenridge Ski Area that will accommodate up to 150,000 additional visitors during the summer season.
The agency this week released a final environmental study for the new installations and programs, along with a draft decision letter from White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams, who said he thinks the new facilities — including zip lines, canopy tours and challenge courses — will enhance public appreciation of national forest lands and the outdoors.
The proposal was controversial in Breckenridge, as some residents expressed concerns about drawing more visitors to the already crowded town. Other locals support the plan as a way of increasing tourism revenues and drumming up more business for local restaurants and shops. Sourced through Scoop.it from: summitcountyvoice.com
GR: At all costs, people first! Sad that a national land-management agency would not see the need to preserve nature now that more than half of all animals on Earth age gone primarily because of habitat loss.
“The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) brought some early Christmas presents to the mountain biking community at the expense of wilderness. Buried in the Act was a boundary adjustment…
GR: Humans have become so numerous, that most forms of outdoor recreation are harmful to habitats and wildlife. “The . . . recreationist has peculiarities that contribute in subtle ways to his own undoing. To enjoy he must possess, invade, appropriate. Hence, the wilderness that he cannot personally see has no value to him. Hence the universal assumption that an unused hinterland is rendering no service to society. To those devoid of imagination, a blank place on the map is a useless waste; to others, the most valuable part” (Leopold 1949: 176).
Important for reminding us that our mere presence can harm wildlife. Please sign the .
“Irresponsible tourism can put animals in danger and harm imperiled species. Pledge to be a responsible tourist who helps to protect animal welfare while overseas.”
GR: The dangers of outdoor recreation were long ago defined by my favorite conservation writer. “The retreat of the wilderness under the barrage of motorized tourists is no local thing; Hudson Bay, Alaska, Mexico, South Africa are giving way, South America and Siberia are next. Drums along the Mohawk are now honks along the rivers of the world. Homo sapiens putters no more under his own vine and fig tree; he has poured into his gas tank the stored motivity of countless creatures aspiring through the ages to wiggle their way to pastures new. Ant-like he swarms the continents. This is Outdoor Recreation, Latest Model” (Leopold, 1949: 166).