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Fri., March 25, 2011

Ski expansion unconvincing

A good idea sells itself. Why, then, do the proponents of the Mount Spokane ski expansion insist on misrepresenting the issues?

When the Cowles family donated the land to the state, they intended for it to be developed, not preserved; ski patrol rescues backcountry users on a “weekly basis”; expansion will extend the ski season; and the new lift would simply be a “reinstallation” of a previous lift. The list of misleading “evidence” put forth by Mount Spokane 2000 goes on.

Our community deserves an honest debate about the proposed ski area expansion. Numerous state agencies as well as outdoor recreation and conservation groups have taken a hard look at Mt. Spokane 2000’s proposed ski area expansion and voiced their solid opposition.

Our region is blessed with nearly 9,000 acres of lift-accessed ski terrain. Skiers rarely wait in line at Mount Spokane now, and the additional terrain that’s been proposed would be mediocre skiing at best; the expansion will do nothing to improve the resort’s viability. Rather, adding this measly 325 acres will destroy natural habitat, mar existing views, and eliminate backcountry recreation opportunities – both summer and winter – for our entire community.

Lloyd Hixson


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