Klamath Falls, OR, Jan. 11, 2001--(SAM Magazine) Oregon skiers who had dreamed of a nine-lift, 54-run ski resort at Pelican Butte, to say nothing of backers who had footed the multi-million dollar bill for the 850-page environmental impact statement, are facing the strong probability that the resort will never see the light of day.
The project is the victim of President Clinton's adoption on January 5 of new protections for roadless areas. The U.S. Forest Service released its roadless plan Record of Decision without an exemption for the Pelican Butte facility.
Kurt Schmidt, environmental coordinator of Pelican Butte Corporation was bitter that four years of effort had ended this way. Calling their EIS "the most intensive site-specific study effort for a ski area in the history of the country," Schmidt contrasted it with the six-month effort for the EIS required for the President's initiative, which involved, he says, "almost no local site-specific data gathering data, and. . .essentially no local input by people most directly affected."