Monthly Archives: March 2015

Rainy day attractions at ski areas

With ski areas skunked in a fourth winter of drought, newspapers from Sacramento to Reno have started examining how ski-anchored mountain resorts might shift their attractions to be less reliant on snow. The short answer is that they’ve been trying for a long time, and it just ain’t easy. Continue reading

Posted in Mountain towns | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Last drops of the Eagle River

At the headwaters of the Eagle River, above Vail and Minturn, nearly all of the water is spoken for. But exactly how the water will be stored, released and diverted is still an open debate as water providers plan for hotter, longer summers in the 21st century. Continue reading

Posted in Mountain towns, Water | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

A conversation about utilities of the future

Regulation of investor-owned utilities in Colorado and elsewhere is “so 20th century,” in the words of a Colorado legislator. Max Tyler proposes a deep examination of regulatory reform. His bill passed its first test on a party-line vote.
Continue reading

Posted in Coal, Colorado, Energy | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on A conversation about utilities of the future

Family Dollar over Abiquiú

Family Dollar some time ago rose over Hernández, New Mexico, the small town made famous by photographer Ansel Adams. Will it soon also rise over Abiquiú, the town made famous by the painter Georgia O’Keeffe? Continue reading

Posted in Mountain towns | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Family Dollar over Abiquiú

The limbo of Purgatory

The story of North America is usually told as one of westward expansion. That’s an incomplete telling, however, and a recent news story about the renaming of a ski area north of Durango serves as a reminder. Continue reading

Posted in Mountain towns | Tagged , , | Comments Off on The limbo of Purgatory

Dope-sniffing dogs

Dogs will eat anything — including apples used for smoking cannabis. Cats, they’re a bit more picky. But what will happen to dope-sniffing dogs now once marijuana becomes legal.
Continue reading

Posted in Mountain towns | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Dope-sniffing dogs

Thinning snow for skiing and melting Arctic ice

While snow-short Mt. Baker Ski Area struggles to reopen in Washington state, the implications of melting ice in the Arctic was discussed at the Vail Global Energy Forum. Continue reading

Posted in Climate change, Energy, Mountain towns | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Thinning snow for skiing and melting Arctic ice

Selma’s conflicted signs about non-violence

In front of Selma’s Brown Chapel stands a monument to Martin Luther King and the strategy of non-violence. On the front doors is a very different message. Continue reading

Posted in Mountain towns | Comments Off on Selma’s conflicted signs about non-violence

Putting the electric harness on old dams

With strong financial and other incentives from state and federal governments, several dams in Colorado have or soon will be retrofitted with electrical turbines.
Continue reading

Posted in Colorado, Hydroelectric, Water | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Aspen’s renewable milestone in 2015

Aspen, the municipality, put its mind to shifting its electrical portfolio to 100 percent renewables—and guess what, it’s about there and without costing an arm and a leg.
Continue reading

Posted in Aspen, Energy, Mountain towns, Renewable Energy | Tagged , , | 6 Comments