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Forest Service Approves Whitefish Mountain Expansion

Whitefish Mountain Hellroaring Basin project.
U.S. Forest Service
Whitefish Mountain Hellroaring Basin project.

Whitefish Mountain Resort will begin work this spring to add an additional ski lift and several new runs in the Hellroaring Basin area. The U.S. Forest Service approved the project Wednesday.

Resort staff say tree clearing will begin soon on four existing runs and two new runs in the area. Other areas of the basin will be thinned out to improve skiing in the trees. Both of those parts of the project are expected to be complete this fall.

In 2021, Whitefish Mountain plans to relocate Chair 8 to provide better access to the front and backside of the mountain.

The resort says it will add an additional lift in the future to the top of Hellroaring Peak as well as additional runs, but dates for those projects haven’t been announced. All of the work will take place within the resort’s current permitted boundary on Forest Service land.

At least one environmental group has raised opposition to the project saying it poses risks to grizzly bear habitat security.

Copyright 2020 Montana Public Radio. To see more, visit Montana Public Radio.

Aaron is Montana Public Radio's Flathead reporter.