The Spokesman-Review editorial on April 14 outlined very well, “Washington state parks are being sold short.” The issue being raised now on the expansion of the Mt. Spokane ski area is typical of the misunderstanding of the value of state parks.
Mount Spokane State Park has an area of 14,000 acres (21.9 square miles) and the not-for-profit Ski Concession Mt. Spokane 2000 is being challenged on its expansion plan. The concession has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on environmental impact studies, consultants’ and attorneys’ fees over the past 15 years with no proven adverse environmental impacts on the 80 acres involved.
Of the 117 Washington state parks, Mt. Spokane Ski Concession has consistently been the No. 1 concession returning more annual revenue payments back to the State Parks General Fund.
In the meantime, skiers are being denied the much needed expanded and improved ski area in their state park.