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Plans For A Private Ski Mountain Near Steamboat Rise From The Ashes

Stagecoach-Map From 1972 to 1974, Colorado skiers rode the three lifts and skied the dozen trails on Stagecoach Mountain, which closed. (Image via The Steamboat Group Real Estate)

A dream from 50 years ago has come back to life in northern Colorado with the announced intentions to resurrect a private skiing and riding mountain south of Steamboat Springs.

Local news media is reporting that the company behind the exclusive private Yellowstone Club in Montana has submitted documents to confirm availability of water for snowmaking and golf course irrigation for Stagecoach Mountain Ranch. And, a revised plan for some 697 residences, a private ski mountain and golf course is expected to be submitted this spring to county officials.

If Stagecoach ownership clears county and water district hurdles, it will reportedly be the third private ski mountain in the world, with Yellowstone and Colorado's Cimarron Mountain Club above Montrose as the others. Each of those require property ownership and steep entry and yearly fees. Cimarron is limited to just 13 families.

At Stagecoach in 1972, a Colorado Springs development company cut a dozen trails, started work on a base lodge and put up three chairlifts on 900 acres with a 1,700-foot vertical pitch they called Stagecoach Ski Area. With much fanfare, it opened, and ran for two seasons but then lost financing and shut down in 1974.

Now, five decades later, details are somewhat sketchy, but industry officials have confirmed that a gondola is in production for installation this summer at Stagecoach Mountain. A trail map released by a local real estate agent shows a trail system identical to the one drawn up in 1972.

Like many private resorts, you'll have to own property somewhere on the 6,620-acre Stagecoach Mountain Ranch in order to hop the lifts and ski or ride the more than a dozen trails that were cut more than 50 years ago but are still visible from afar. Exclusively is an emerging trend in the ski industry, with the purchase of pre-opening lift rides and line-cutting becoming more popular, and Powder Mountain about to rope off a portion of its mountain for homeowners-only. 

A 390-acre golf course is said to be included in the project, along with equestrian facilities and possible fishing access to nearby Yampa River. In addition, the public Stagecoach State Park reservoir laps up to the base of the new winter resort.

Housing lots will likely cost several million dollars, the agent said, with the bulk of residences located on the ski mountain itself.


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