sighted in Colorado
I-70 CORRIDOR – Two years ago tracks were found in the
Eagle River that even a skeptical wildlife biologist with 30
years experience admitted would best be explained by an undocumented
creature along the lines of Bigfoot or Sasquatch.
That sent The Denver Post searching for evidence. In its most
recent story on the subject, that paper ventured to the Pacific
Northwest and found that even previously skeptical scientists
are more open to the idea of a big hairy thing out in the woods
of North America.
And with that, reports are starting to come out of the woodwork
in Summit County of evidence of Bigfoot, or at least Big Feet.
Trevor Denny told the Summit Daily News (Jan. 13) that last
June he found footprints that were “far larger than any
footprints he’s ever seen.”
Two days later, the newspaper reported that two more people
had come forth, saying they had seen what they believe were
either Bigfoot or grizzly bear tracks in the Gore Range. Except
for possibly the South San Juans, grizzly bears are thought
to have disappeared from Colorado decades ago.
Senior charged with ski ticket fraud
BRECKENRIDGE – A 72-year-old man has been banned from
Vail Resorts property and charged by police with unlawful use
of a ski area facility after ski area employees said they saw
him selling lift tickets illegally.
The man in question was described by the Summit Daily News
(Jan. 16) as a colorful and well-known individual who skis 200
days each year. He outlived doctors’ predictions after
open-heart surgery, rides his motorcycle and is involved with
the Over the Hill Gang.
But police say he wasn’t too over the hill to scam lift
tickets. He was accused of buying half-day tickets given to
ski area employees and selling them on the street for $20 to
$25. He turned over 226 half-day tickets to police.
The newspaper later explained that black-market peddling of
lift tickets is common. Full-time Vail Resorts workers get 16
half-day tickets. Intrawest employees get between three and
14 full-day lift tickets, depending on tenure, and also can
buy up to 10 lift tickets for $20 each.
But most housekeepers and such don’t ski, and they know
who to sell their tickets to. Another scam is to buy lift tickets
sold along the Front Range at significant discounts, then peddle
them to destination skiers, who commonly pay significantly higher
Escort service expects brisk business
PARK CITY, UTAH – An escort service, called Hometown
Babes, has opened an office in Park City’s Main Street
district, hoping to cash in on the resort’s convention
business as well as the imbalance of male skiers to female skiers.
The owner, identified only as Victoria, expects a brisk business
but not a frisky business. Her employees – typically models
and students from nearby Salt Lake City – understand what
they can and cannot do, she said. “I’m telling them
they have to be legal,” she told The Park Record (Jan.
The local Chamber of Commerce has eagerly greeted the new business.
“Any service we can offer our destination visitors is
an additional amenity,” said Shawn Stinson, chamber spokesman.
“If it’s a service that’s requested enough,
whether food or beverage oriented or companion oriented, it
adds to the product mix.”
Telluride puts bite on dog parking
TELLURIDE – Telluride’s sizable dog population
has caused the Town Council to pass a new law that limits puppy
parking to eight hours within any 12-hour period. As well, the
town has made private landowners, as well as occupants and dog
owners, responsible for cleaning up property dirtied by dogs.
DJ suspended for playing Bee Gees
VAIL – After Maurice Gibbs of the Bee Gees died, disc
jockey Dennis Mac chose four songs by the group to play on KTUN-FM,
a radio station with a classic rock format.
But while still broadcasting, Mac got an on-the-air phone call
from his boss, nicknamed “Safety Steve.” And by
the end of the conversation, the DJ had been suspended from
the station, without pay. The conversation, as reported in the
Vail Daily (Jan. 16), went like this:
DJ: Hello, you’re on the air.
Boss: I’m here. Hey Dennis, Safety Steve here, your boss.
I can’t believe you just played four Bee Gees songs. This
is a classic rock station.
DJ: Well, you know, Maurice Gibb passed away, one of the Bee
Boss: Well I understand that, but in honor of him you get to
go home and play four songs to yourself. You just trashed the
format. I can’t even believe that. What’s gotten
into you? You’ve taken over the radio station with disco.
Maybe you want to change it or what?
DJ: No, I just, I thought since he died, I thought we’d
play something other than classic rock.
Boss: You thought too much, I think that’s the problem.
A few screw-you’s, a phone slamming and the suspension
followed, reports the newspaper.
T-ride cracks down on out-of-bounds
TELLURIDE – Ducking boundary ropes to poach powder can
be expensive at Telluride, with the penalty being anywhere from
30 days to two years of lost skiing privileges.
The Telluride Watch says that at least 12 pass- and ticket-holders
had their privileges revoked on New Year’s Day. Most had
ducked the rope into an area of the mountain where ski patrollers
were controlling avalanches with explosives.
Fight ends in attempted murder charge
SQUAW VALLEY, CALIF. – A 28-year-old man has been charged
with attempted murder after a closing-time bar fight. Police
accuse the man of knowingly dragging his opponent for a quarter-mile
in the parking lot at the ski resort. By chance, a ski patroller
happened by shortly after to give the injured man first aid.
The second man was expected to be in the hospital a week, reports
the Sierra Sun (Jan. 16).
Summit County bar bans smoking
SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County Commissioner Gary Lindstrom,
a reformed smoker, lit up a community discussion several weeks
ago when he proposed a county-wide ban on smoking in bars, restaurants
and other public places.
Since then, there have been almost daily letters to the editor
in the Summit Daily News, most agreeing with him, but some arguing
that banning smoking limits individual freedoms. Frisco seems
to be splitting the difference.
The Town Council intends to ban smoking on town property, including
parks. It also is passing a resolution that urges bars and restaurants
to ban smoking. It does not, however, ban smoking on private
Mayor Bob Moscatelli had strongly opposed Lindstrom’s
proposal, despite his personal objections to smoking. In banning
smoking on public property, says the Summit Daily News (Jan.
10), Moscatelli said it would be better to be “at the
head of the train, not the caboose.”
Several bars already ban smoking in Frisco, but the majority
of sentiment seems to be that they don’t want to ban smoking
unless all bars ban smoking, to give them an equal footing.
Smokers tend to be drinkers as well.
Sixty restaurants in Summit County, including 25 in Breckenridge,
Hunters dislike birth control for elk
JACKSON HOLE, WYO. – Hunters who kill 3,000 of the 13,000
elk in Jackson Hole each year are wary of research into birth
control for cow elk and bison. The research is being done in
Colorado, where biologists see birth control as a possible alternative
to hunting when elk are found in urban areas. However, birth
control is among the possibilities in Grand Teton National Park,
where hunter access is limited, reports the Jackson Hole News
& Guide (Jan. 15).
Administration is expensive: The cost of a single dose of birth
control is between $100 and $300 per elk. That cost could be
reduced if biologists can develop a dart gun to deliver the
drug. There also are ethical considerations. “If we’re
playing God with elk, we’re impacting the natural selection
process,” says Doug Brimeyer, wildlife biologist with
Wyoming Game and Fish.
Jackson Hole hunters, however, think wolves are already keeping
the elk populations in check.
Plans for huge luxury hotel unveiled in Vail
VAIL – Plans have been unfurled for a 140-room Four Seasons
hotel at the main entrance to Vail. Although not the largest
building – Vail Resorts has a 350-room Marriott elsewhere
in the town – it is proposed to be tallest, at about 81
Reacting to the architectural rendering, planning commissioners
and others described the building as “gutsy” and
“huge,” reports the Vail Daily (Jan. 16). One commissioner
likened it to a “cruise liner backed up against Frontage
MIT to study population and nitrogen
KETCHUM, IDAHO – A team of four researchers from the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology has begun studying how
population growth will affect nitrogen pollution in the Wood
Nitrogen is of interest because, in the form of nitrate, it
is the most common contaminant from agriculture and sewage treatment
and is a human health hazard when ingested.
The study comes as part of a heightened interest in local water
quality, reports the Idaho Mountain Express (Jan. 8). Blaine
County commissioners are considering a plan that would give
cities more control over development outside their boundaries
that might affect their drinking water.
The results should allow local governments to determine whether
to set stricter standards on sewage treatment plants and septic
systems. It also will help govern agricultural practices, including
relocating livestock and crops farther from surface water and
changing application methods and quantities of fertilizer.