Upcoming Forest Service Event Looks at Uphill Ski Travel Policy

By Beacon Staff

The public is invited to discuss the future of uphill travel at Whitefish Mountain Resort at an upcoming event hosted by the Flathead National Forest.

Due to a string of recent violations, including a close-call involving skiers traveling in an area where explosives were being used, the resort has announced it is considering changing the rule that allows skiers to hike up the mountain to make their turns.

The topic will be the subject of the next “Flathead Forest Friday” on March 21 at the Pin & Cue located at 6570 U.S. Highway 93 South in Whitefish. The no-host breakfast chat starts at 7 a.m. Attendees will learn about the efforts the FNF is taking to better enforce the policy and what is at risk with continued non-compliance. Leaders from the forest hope to hear from attendees their ideas on how to improve compliance and any other thoughts on the policy.

In 2010, Whitefish Mountain Resort and Flathead National Forest worked together to establish an uphill traffic policy and supporting Special Order to maintain access to public lands, reduce risk to uphill and downhill skiers and minimize disruption to resort employees and operations. Resort management has recently expressed concern about continued non-compliance with the uphill traffic policy. The Forest Service is working with WMR to find ways to maintain public access, increase compliance, improve public safety and reduce conflict with essential operations of a ski resort.

If you plan to attend or have any questions, please notify Public Affairs Officer Wade Muehlhof at [email protected] or (406) 758-5252.

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