Page 1

[February 2013]

Ed Grange’s

Vision for Vail


February 2013 [cover] Glenwood Springs resident Ed Grange, who was there during Vail’s early days, still enjoys skiing.




4 Viewpoint

16 Vision for Vail

24 Gardening

5 Letters 6 Calendar 7 Co-op News 12 NewsClips 14 Strategic Solutions

20 Recipes

25 Energy Tips

Co-op transmission lines: For members, not profit

Ed Grange recalls how the electric co-op helped Vail get its start Make sweet, fluffy marshmallows that melt in your mouth

When buying flowers, be conscious of where they come from

Select garage doors for durability and energy efficiency

26 Outdoors

Organizing your tackle box can keep the right fly accessible

Technology helps keep electricity affordable, reliable for members


29 Education 29 Funny Stories 30 Discoveries

11,000 1960 24,600 children conceived on Valentine’s Day annually in the U.S.

Vail broke ground, becoming one of the world’s most-loved ski resorts

Florists nationwide

COMMUNICATIONS STAFF: Mona Neeley, CCC, Publisher/Editor@303-455-4111; Donna Wallin, Associate Editor; • Amy Higgins, Editorial Assistant/Writer; ADVERTISING: Kris Wendtland@303-902-7276; NCM@800-626-1181

The official publication of the Colorado Rural Electric Association || Volume 44, Number 02

OFFICERS: Bob Bledsoe [Tri-State] President; Bill Midcap [Fort Morgan] Vice President; Don Kaufman [Sangre de Cristo] Secretary; Jack Schneider [Poudre Valley] Treasurer; Kent Singer [CREA] Executive Director BOARD OF DIRECTORS: Bill Patterson [Delta-Montrose]; John Porter [Empire]; Don McClaskey [Grand Valley]; John Vader [Gunnison]; Jim Lueck [Highline]; Megan Gilman [Holy Cross]; Dan Mills [K.C.]; Tom Compton [La Plata]; Stan Cazier [Mountain Parks]; B.D. Paddock [Mountain View]; Joseph Costa, Reg Rudolph [San Isabel]; Eleanor Valdez [San Luis Valley]; Marcus Wilson, Kevin Ritter [San Miguel]; Randy Phillips [Southeast]; Jim Jaeger, Ron Asche [United Power]; Bill Jordan [White River]; Stuart Travis [Y-W]; Scott McGill [Yampa Valley]; Basin Electric, CoBank, Moon Lake Electric, Wheatland Electric [Associate Members]

EDITORIAL: Denver Corporate Office, 5400 N. Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216; Phone: 303-455-4111 • Email: • Website: • Facebook: Colorado Country Life • Twitter: @COCountryLife Colorado Country Life (USPS 469-400/ISSN 1090-2503) is published monthly for $9/$15 per year by Colorado Rural Electric Association, 5400 N. Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216. Periodical postage paid at Denver, Colorado. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Colorado Country Life, 5400 N. Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216 Publication of an advertisement in Colorado Country Life does not imply endorsement by any Colorado rural electric cooperative or the Colorado Rural Electric Association. Editorial opinions published in Colorado Country Life magazine shall pertain to issues affecting rural electric cooperatives, rural communities and citizens. The opinion of CREA is not necessarily that of any particular cooperative or individual.


Tolstoy and Transmission Lines

Electric co-ops build transmission lines to serve members, not for someone else’s profits BY KENT SINGER || CREA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR || KSINGER@COLORADOREA.ORG


The story of high-voltage electric transmission line development in Colorado reads like a good Russian novel: there are lots of characters, the plot is extremely complicated and the heroes battle against long odds. This analogy came to mind recently when I attended the Rocky Mountain Clean Energy Transmission Summit. Since my panel was at the end of the day, I listened to several speakers talk about how we need more transmission capacity in Colorado so we can take advantage of the excellent wind resource that exists primarily on the eastern plains of Colorado. Over the last 10 years or so, Xcel Energy has entered into numerous contracts with wind developers to integrate wind power into its power portfolio. Xcel now has in excess of 2,000 megawatts of wind power in its energy mix. Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, the power supplier for 18 of Colorado’s 22 electric distribution co-ops, has also signed power purchase agreements with wind developers totaling about 120 megawatts of wind capacity. (See page 12.) But even with all of this wind generating capacity being integrated into the Colorado electric supply mix, some folks want more. They advocate building additional transmission lines so that electricity from Colorado wind can be exported to other states. Why wouldn’t Colorado’s electric co-ops be willing to spend tens or hundreds of millions of dollars to build this additional transmission capacity when the co-ops could make a lot of money selling wind power to California consumers, they ask. Here’s why not: While Xcel Energy is a for-profit investor-owned utility, Tri-State is a nonprofit electric cooperative that is

owned by its 44 memberowned electric distribution co-ops and public power districts. It does not have a profit motive. It does not risk its members’ money on speculative projects. TriState was formed to provide a stable, reliable and affordKent Singer able source of power to its member co-ops, which were, in turn, formed to distribute that power to their member-owners. It would be contrary to the cooperative principles on which Tri-State was founded to risk the hard-earned dollars of its member-owners on projects that are not necessary either to serve the electricity needs of its member-owners or to enhance the reliability of that service. Co-ops build facilities, including transmission lines, when they are needed to provide reliable and affordable electric service. This is the same reason we have been opposed to “organized” transmission markets in the West. Many folks at the conference I attended were advocates of creating a new kind of market structure for western utilities that would require Tri-State to put its transmission capacity into a pool with other utilities and make that capacity available to those who want to develop wind farms in eastern Colorado. A new market structure would mean that Tri-State would no longer have control of facilities that it has built over several decades with the funds from the electricity bills of thousands of rural consumers. If co-ops ceded control of our transmission system to a third party, we would be violating the trust of the electric co-op member-owners who funded the original development of those assets.

We recognize that the electricity industry is evolving and that there are good reasons for diversifying the mix of generating resources that are used to produce electricity. To that end, Tri-State and its Colorado members have been actively integrating new wind and solar energy into their resource mix. At the transmission summit, I shared pictures of a sampling of the many local Colorado co-op projects using renewable energy, including hydropower, biomass, landfill methane, community solar, small-scale wind, and coal mine methane. Make no mistake: Electric co-ops support additional transmission line capacity that can be used for renewable energy. For example, Tri-State proposed a joint project with Xcel to build a line out of the San Luis Valley that would have helped get solar power from the valley to the Front Range. Although this project offered multiple benefits for Xcel and Tri-State, it has been delayed for years by local landowner opposition, and now it appears it may not proceed at all. Yes, development of high-voltage electric transmission capacity in Colorado is truly like a long Russian novel. Colorado’s electric co-ops are working hard to make sure that, in our case, the story has a happy ending with co-op member-owners in control of their own destiny.

Kent Singer, Executive Director


[letters] Wind, Solar vs. Power Lines Distributed electricity generation, including neighborhood solar farms, has huge benefits. It would let people still have heat and lights if the grid had problems. It reduces serious amounts of air pollution from burning coal. We have such big solar and wind resources; it would be good to capture as much of it as possible.

Lee Cassin, DeBeque

Transmission lines are not a problem. I appreciate transmission lines, transformers, substations and power plants, which provide low-cost, reliable electricity.

Robert Garey, Ignacio

I am much in favor of solar panels on individual roofs and backyard wind turbines, an excellent alternative or supplement to large power plants.

Jessica Segrest, Grand Junction

As a Mountain View Electric customer, I have absolutely no problem with transmission lines. Your job is to provide economical electricity and overhead lines do that. They aren’t so visually unattractive that they keep me awake at night. Home solar and wind are still impractical at best and economically not viable (as far as payback time versus capital costs of the equipment).

Steve Helmreich, Black Forest

Keep me connected; I have no problem with high-tension lines. I speak as one who has solar experience. In 1982 I built a solar heating system for a swimming pool in California and it was still working fine in 2008. I live on a parcel of land here on the plains that is ideal for any solar application. I have had a site survey done for solar electric and have looked at wind turbines. So why am I not getting into solar, knowing that the cost of electricity will continue to rise? The cost. At age 81 the cost savings of any solar would not be paid off in my lifetime.

Gene Weite, Peyton

Send your letter to the editor by mail to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver CO 80216 or email You must include your name and address to be published. Letters may be edited. February 2013 5


[February] Through February 24 Denver Orchid Festival Denver Botanic Gardens 9 am-5 pm • botanicgardens. org February 8-10 Lake City Hot Air Balloon Festival & Snowmobile Rally Various Lake City Locations events2 February 9-10 Colorado Springs Dance-A-Thon & Health Expo Marriott Colorado Springs 4 pm-5 am • frontrangedat. com February 9-17 Denver Colorado Garden & Home Show Colorado Convention Center February 9 Durango “Bella Notte” Italian Dinner St. Columba School Gym 5-8 pm • 970-247-5527 February 9 Lake City Ice Climbing Festival Lake City Ice Park 970-275-4106 • lakecity February 10 Salida Walden Chamber Music Society Concert SteamPlant Theater 3 pm • 719-395-2097 February 14 Crested Butte Swing Dance Class Center for the Arts Crested Butte 8-9 pm • 970-349-7487 February 14 Loveland Mountaintop Matrimony Loveland Ski Area wedding.aspx 6 February 2013

February 14-17 Telluride Telluride Comedy Festival Sheridan Opera House comedy-festival February 15 Fraser Pregnancy Resource Fundraising Banquet Crooked Creek-Young Life Camp 5-9 pm • 970-887-3617 February 15-17 Lake City Frozen River Film Festival Mary Stigall Theatre February 15 Pueblo “Meet Me in Paris” Performance Jackson Conference Center 7:30 pm • 719-295-7200 February 15-17 Silverthorne Pabst Colorado Pond Hockey Tournament North Pond Park February 16-17 Cripple Creek Cripple Creek Ice Festival Bennett Avenue February 16-17 Estes Park “Rails in the Rockies” Exhibit Estes Park Conference Center 800-443-7837 • estesparkcvb. com/events.cfm February 16 Littleton “Follow the Yellow Brick Road” Concert Littleton United Methodist Church 7:30 pm • coloradowind February 16 Littleton Snowman Stampede and Kids Run Hudson Gardens 9 am • winterdistanceseries. com/Snowman/

February 16 Loveland Fiber Fun Fest Larimer Country Fairgrounds 9 am-4 pm • February 19 Denver Sand Creek Massacre Lecture History Colorado Center 1-2 pm • 303-866-2394 February 21-23 Aspen Aspen Laff Festival Wheeler Opera House February 21-23 Fort Collins Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” Lincoln Center 970-221-6730 • lctix February 21 Greeley “The Texas Tenors” Concert Union Colony Civic Center 7 pm • February 22-24 Keystone Burton Mountain Festival Keystone Mountain House Base Area 970-496-4386 February 23 Fort Collins High Plains Landscape Workshop/Fundraiser Fort Collins Senior Center 8:30 a.m.-3:30 pm • highplains February 23 Lake City Ice Fishing Derby Lake San Cristobal events2 February 24 Beulah Winter Wildflower Hike Mountain Park Environmental Center 11 am • February 26 Golden Buffalo Bill Birthday Celebration The Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave 12-3 pm • 303-526-0744

February 27-March 3 Durango Durango Film Festival Various Durango Locations

[March] March 1-2 Durango “Lives Well Lived” Choir Performance First United Methodist Church 800-838-3006 • durango March 1 Littleton Free Admission Day Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield March 3 Copper Mountain Special Olympics Winter Games Copper Mountain Resort events_and_activities/ calendar/index.html March 6 Broomfield “The Barber of Seville” Opera Broomfield Auditorium 7-8 pm • March 9 Buena Vista “Live From New York — It’s Saturday Night” With Walden State Highway Theater 6-9:30 pm • 719-395-2097 March 10 Monarch Butterfly Roundup Monarch Mountain generalinfo/events-calendar




Calendar, Colorado Country Life, 5400 N. Washington St., Denver, CO 80216; fax to 303-455-2807; or email calendar For more information on these and other events, visit


[Y-W News] Keep Your Valentine Safe From Shock


Every year, people flock to their local grocery and party stores to buy candy and balloons for their valentines. However, the cute heart-shaped metallic balloons that are so popular every year could have costly, or even deadly, side effects. As part of the “Teach Learn Care,” or TLC, campaign, Safe Electricity urges consumers to understand the proper safety steps that must be taken this Valentine’s Day. “Many people are unaware that metallic balloons, called Mylar balloons, are actually powerful conductors of electricity,” says Kyle Finley, owner of Live Line Demo, Inc. “In fact, each Mylar balloon carries a warning label, which states that it can conduct electricity, it should not be released outdoors, near overhead power lines and misuse may cause personal injury. Buying Mylar balloons is

so commonplace, people just completely overlook the warning and never realize that they’re creating an electrical hazard for themselves and their loved ones.” Metallic balloons that are not secured properly can float up into power lines or come down into electrical substations. The consequences can lead to substantial problems ranging from power outages to extensive equipment damage. The cost can be thousands and even millions of dollars. (Charles and Angela Sprague Acct. #1033507200) “As parents, we often tie balloons to our children’s wrists to keep them from floating away,” Finley says. “If we tie a metallic ribbon to a Mylar balloon and then attach it to our child, we have actually created a potential path to ground for electricity. The results can be deadly.”

For example, if the balloon is carried outside near equipment, such as the electrical service connection, or if it happens to touch an exposed wire indoors, it could potentially cause electric shock injury or kill the person holding it. Safe Electricity wants everyone to enjoy their Valentine’s Day with their special someone. However, when the celebration is over please remember to puncture the balloons and throw them away to keep them safely away from power lines and electrical equipment.

To see a live line power demonstration and to learn more about the risks posed by Mylar balloons and other electrical safety hazards, visit February 2013 7


[Billing Corner]

E-Bill Available


For convenience, Y-W Electric offers E-bill to consumers. This service allows you to pay your bill electronically on Y-W’s website either with a credit or debit card or checking account. You may also choose to receive a monthly statement electronically. The website also offers a “Service My Account” option. Through this option, you may contact Y-W Electric through email. Check out the website at ywelectric. coop for more information. Credit card and check-by-phone payments are still accepted during regular business hours. Due to the utilization of E-bill, there is no longer a fee charged for using check or credit card payments by phone. If requesting this service, you will either need your credit card or your bank and checking account information. (Mason and Kelly Hansen Acct. #5142003007)

New Employee

We at Y-W Electric Association would like to welcome Denise Bernhardt to the cooperative. She started her employment with us on December 17, 2012. Denise and family moved to the area 18 years ago from the Fort Collins area. Prior to employment at Y-W, she worked for Advanced Drilling Technologies in Yuma. Denise enjoys her down time with her husband, Rod. They have three adult children they enjoy traveling to visit. Welcome to the family, Denise. (Richard and Ruth Seedorf Acct. # 740608901)

Y-W Electric is offering a renewable energy program subject to renewable energy being available from Y-W’s wholesale electric power supplier, Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association. Members may sign up for a set amount of renewable resource power in 100-kilowatt-hour per month increments. There will be a small premium of 9 cents per 100-kWh block in addition to the present rate. Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association has purchased output electricity from wind farms, hydropower projects and solar power to provide this service.

Guidelines for Green Power Rate Availability — To all Y-W Electric members in 100-kWh per month blocks.

Eligibility — Any Y-W Electric member, who

must complete and return to Y-W Electric an Intent to Purchase Renewable Generated Power Application. This form will indicate the number of 100-kWh blocks the member intends to purchase monthly.

Rate — The rate will be a renewable power

premium (added charge) for all renewable power delivered to the member participant as committed in the Intent to Purchase Renewable Generated Power Application. The renewable rate will be 9 cents per 100-kWh block in addition to the present rate applicable to the member.

Duration — Once the member has commit-

ted to the purchase, this rate shall qualify on a month-to-month basis. (Mitchell and Susan Kraich Acct. #2307005000)



Each month, Y-W Electric offers members a chance to earn a $20 credit on their next electric bill. If you recognize your name and account number in this magazine, call 800-660-2291 and ask for your credit. It couldn’t be easier. Members claiming their $20 credit from the November 2012 issue are Palser Farms, Inc., Val and Lisa Meredith, Edwin and Karen Ehrman, Liberty Baptist Church and Richard and Shirley Travis. Get acquainted with your account number, read your Colorado Country Life magazine and pick up the phone. That’s all the energy you’ll need to claim your energy bucks. You must claim your credit during the month in which your name appears in the magazine (check the date on the front cover). 8 February 2013


City, State, ZIP Code Number of Green Power blocks of 100 kWh

Signature I have committed to this purchase. This rate shall qualify on a month-to-month basis.

[Y-W News]

Identifying Electric Shock


Learning the symptoms of electric shock and knowing how to help someone who gets shocked by electricity will help protect you and could save someone’s life. In many cases, electric injury is obvious: heart failure, burns, broken bones, seizures. In other cases, the injury might not be as evident because electrical contact affects the body from the inside out. If you or a loved one is involved with electricity contact and there are no obvious injuries, it is still important to watch for these symptoms: n Changes in alertness n Headache n Problems with vision n Problems with swallowing or hearing n Irregular heartbeat n Muscle spasm and pain n Numbness or tingling n Breathing problems If you come upon someone who you believe is in contact or has just suffered an electrical shock: n Look first. Do not touch. The person may still be in contact with the electrical source and energized. Touching the person may pass the current through you. If there are others nearby, make sure they do not touch the person either.

n Call 911 and the electric utility. n Turn off the source of electricity, if it is

known and safely possible (i.e., circuit breaker or box). If you are not sure, wait for help from the emergency responders. n Only after the source of electricity is off, check for signs of circulation: breathing, coughing or movement. Provide any necessary first aid. n Prevent shock. Lay the person down and, if possible, position the head slightly lower than the trunk with the legs elevated. n Do not move a person with an electrical injury unless the person is in immediate danger. Remember: Do not touch the person with your bare hands if he or she is still in contact with the electrical current. Do not get near high-voltage wires until the power is turned off. Call 911 and then the utility so it can come and de-energize the lines. Anyone who has come into contact with electricity should see a doctor to check for internal injuries, even if he or she has no obvious signs or symptoms. For more information on staying safe around electricity, visit (Richard and Ruth Seedorf Acct. # 740608901) February 2013 9

[Y-W News] 10 February 2013 September 2012 11


T Highline Electric General Manager Mark Farnsworth (second from left) and Highline Electric board member Leo Brekel (fifth from left) join officials at a local wind farm’s ribbon cutting.

Co-ops Celebrate New Wind Farm


More renewable wind energy is now available to Colorado’s electric co-ops with the late December opening of the new Colorado Highlands Wind project. Tri-State has a 20-year power purchase agreement to buy electricity from the northeastern Colorado wind farm, which is located on a 5,200-acre site in Logan County within Highline Electric Association’s service territory. There are currently 42 state-of-the-art wind turbines with 14 more planned. GE Energy Financial Services and Denver-based Alliance Power jointly own the project. Gov. John Hickenlooper voiced his support of the project and offered his congratulations. “Our state has long been a global leader in the area of wind, solar and other sources of renewable energy,” he said. “This is because we have the fortune of attracting leaders such as Tri-State who work to increase the amount of renewable resources in our energy mix.” “The Colorado Highlands Wind project presented a great opportunity for Tri-State and our member electric co-ops,” said Brad Nebergall, Tri-State senior vice president of energy management. “It … further diversifies our overall generation portfolio while also assisting our members to meet their obligations under state renewable portfolio standards.” “We’re pleased that the project is located within Highline Electric’s service territory,” said Mark Farnsworth, general manager of Highline Electric, the local electric co-op. “We support Tri-State’s continued efforts in securing reliable, affordable and responsible power on our behalf, and we also appreciate the economic development opportunities that the project provides in this part of the state.” And it was all done in less than a year. After the project received the last of its approvals in December of 2011, it was an “all out sprint” to completion with on-site construction beginning in April and ending December 6, 2012. This new wind farm is the third utility-scale renewable energy facility from which Tri-State receives all of the electrical output and renewable energy credits. 12 February 2013

There’s now an app that puts a directory of the 2013 Colorado Legislature on your electronic Apple or Droid device, thanks to the Colorado Rural Electric Association. Simply go to the App Store on your Apple device or Google Play on your Droid and search for Colorado Legislative Directory. Then download it for only 99 cents. You’ll have all of the names of the senators and representatives serving in this year’s Colorado General Assembly. You’ll have their email addresses and their phone numbers. Paper copies of the popular legislative directory published each year by CREA are also available through your local co-op. Or contact CREA at 303455-2700.

Reader Opinions

Electricity Powers Much of Our Lives The lists were long when we asked readers last month how many electronic devices they have at home. Most listed computers and tablets, along with electric appliances that have now gone electronic, such as washing machines and refrigerators. The number one electric item readers couldn’t live without? The lightbulb. Even today, more than 75 years after the first electric co-op brought electricity to farms and ranches here in Colorado, the simple, yet profound, benefit of light on demand is still appreciated.

This month we are asking: How do you want to see the director you elect to your electric co-op’s board of directors represent you? What issues should he or she bring to the board? Email your thoughts to info@colorado February 2012 13


Electric co-ops developing technologies to keep affordable, reliable electricity flowing BY MAGEN HOWARD

If treated well, your electric co-op’s equipment and infrastructure (like poles, lines and transformers) can last for decades. But as useful life ends for these components, and with the difficulties of building new power plants in the near future, co-ops are increasingly turning to innovative technologies to keep service reliable, safe and affordable.


“Electric cooperatives have been leaders in Co-ops are also becoming more Electric cooperatives adopting technologies to improve reliabilsophisticated with geographic information ity and keep costs contained,” says Brian systems, or GIS. With electronic mapping have been leaders in Sloboda, senior program manager with the programs a co-op can log in every asset Cooperative Research Network. its service territory and its exact adopting technologies to across A good example involves system location and age, so items can be serviced automation, a set of devices and software or replaced on a schedule rather than after improve reliability and programs that allows utilities to track the they’ve failed. GIS also helps in emergency flow of electricity in near real time. Co-ops situations, such as a storm or car accident, keep costs contained. are leading the way in deploying and testby showing poles, wire sizes and equiping these devices, due to their potential to ment used at each location. This allows a boost efficiency. co-op to send correct replacement materials. Sloboda offers down-line automation, or DLA, as a prime “Anybody who’s had a dishwasher repairman come all the example. Rather than wait for an outage report to be called in, way to your house and find he has the wrong parts can underDLA can detect a problem, such as a tree branch touching a stand this,” Sloboda explains. “By having everything in your line, as it occurs and possibly fix it remotely by rerouting power mapping system, you get it right the first time.” before an outage occurs. “The goal of DLA is to decrease the duration of an outage Rising costs and regulations and reduce the number of people who experience it,” Sloboda The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues to impose explains. tighter restrictions on power plant emissions. Thanks to these 14 February 2013

regulations and cheap natural gas, construction of coal-fired facilities idled in recent years. But natural gas prices are expected to surge again, and other options, such as solar and wind, can’t produce reliable round-the-clock power the way baseload coal, natural gas or nuclear plants can. “We believe in being environmentally responsible, but it’s important we do so in a manner that doesn’t result in a shortage of electricity or soaring costs for our members,” says Kent Singer, Colorado Rural Electric Association executive director. “Utilities are working as fast as they can to develop technology that can affordably slash emissions from fossil fuel-fired power plants.” As it stands now, EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards rule requires power plant operators to reduce emissions of mercury, acid gases and other metals by up to 90 percent by 2015. Some coal-fired generating units will be shut down rather than retrofitted because existing technology would be too expensive to implement. EPA is also considering many other major rules that could become game changers for electric utilities. The bulk of these EPA regulations result from court-imposed deadlines. “It’s entirely possible that tighter emissions standards and other rules will have a multibillion dollar impact on the cost of doing business for electric co-ops,” says Kirk Johnson, NRECA senior vice president of government relations. “But what the final regulations will look like remains unclear.”

This comes at a time when costs to build new power plants are on the rise. After steady declines in the years following the 2008 recession, materials and construction costs are shifting upward, according to the IHS CERA Power Capital Costs Index, which follows prices for equipment, facilities, materials and personnel used in power plant construction. Steel costs alone increased 12 percent from the third quarter of 2010 to the first quarter of 2011, and IHS predicts market volatility for other commodities, such as concrete and nickel, will persist. Keeping the lights on Despite challenges, electric cooperatives continue to find ways to keep electricity flowing when their members need it. “Electric co-ops were created because there was a need that wasn’t being met, and rural people took it upon themselves to get the job done,” Singer says. “That pioneering spirit still exists. We’re on the forefront of technological advancements, and we will continue to work hard so our members’ needs are met. Reliable, affordable, safe electric power — that’s what it’s all about.” Magen Howard writes on consumer and cooperative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, based in Arlington, Virginia. Angela Perez also contributed to this article. February 2013 15

Ed Grange Recalls the

Vision for VAIL



It was a bold request, some might even say outrageous. Would Holy Cross Energy build out electric lines — miles of line — to power a risky new venture that its promoters were calling “Vail”? The gondolas were on the way that late spring of 1962, but the downhill dreamers who were trying to make their vision of a new ski area a reality had already spent all their capital; they couldn’t pay Holy Cross, a nonprofit electric co-op, anything up front. Public Service Company had turned them down. One other thing: They wanted their electric lines buried throughout the European-style resort they’d built at the slopes’ base.

One of the men at Holy Cross Electric Association who caught the vision of what Vail could become was Ed Grange. He saw the possibilities in the Gore Valley and helped push the small, local co-op to take a chance on this unproven idea for a ski resort far from population centers. Today, at 84, he still smiles as he skis on what are now world-renown runs. Vail has turned out pretty successfully. It’s celebrating its 50th anniversary this winter and is the country’s largest ski resort. Plenty of Coloradans know its story: Pete Seibert, a former soldier from the 10th Mountain Division, returned to Colorado after World War II and became friends with Earl Eaton, a prospector, hiker and skier born in Eagle. Eaton told Seibert about a secret, no-name mountain he’d discovered. The two founded the brand-new town and ski area, naming the mountain Vail and opening it for business in December 1962. Less well known is the key role played by what is now Holy Cross Energy in Vail’s earliest years — or the role a couple of sheep men played in the story leading up to Vail’s founding. Ed Grange, the retired general manager of Holy Cross, chronicles the Vail story and others in his history of the co-op: Holy Cross Electric: In the Beginning, The First 30 Years. It was a personal project since in many ways the co-op’s history is also Grange’s history. 16 February 2013


Dates and Hours 2011-2012 Season: Friday, November 18, 2011 Sunday, April 15, 2012 Hours of Operations: 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Hours extend over the course of the season) Total skier and snowboarder visits in the last 10 years 2010-2011................................................. 1,750,000 2009-2010...............................................1,599,000 2008-2009............................................. 1,622,000 2007-2008............................................... 1,569,788 2006-2007............................................. 1,608,204 2005-2006................................................ 1,676,118 2004-2005...............................................1,568,192 2003-2004.................................................1,555,513 2002-2003.................................................1,610,961 2001-2002.................................................1,536,024 Elevations Base elevation.......................8,120 ft. /2,476 m Mid elevation.......................10,250 ft. /3,125 m Peak elevation.....................11,570 ft. /3,527 m Vertical rise............................3,450 ft. /1,052 m Acreage Total skiable terrain........................5,289 acres Front side............................................. 1,627 acres Back bowls.......................................... 3,017 acres Blue Sky Basin.......................................645 acres Trail classification 53% expert and advanced 29% intermediate 18% beginner Conventional trails: 193 Longest run: Riva Ridge – 4 miles/6.4 km Lifts Total number of lifts.........................................31 Gondola...................................................................1 High-speed quads...............................................17 Fixed-grip quad.....................................................1 Triple chairs...........................................................2 Double chairs.........................................................1 Surface lifts...........................................................3 Conveyors..............................................................6 Total uphill capacity................................ 59,092

Vail Village 2012

“He was involved from the beginning,” says his son, Tom Grange, who works for Holy Cross as a dispatcher. “There are very few of those people left who know what went on in those early days.” Born on a Roaring Fork Valley ranch in 1928, Ed Grange remembers what life was like without electricity. Water had to be hand-pumped; there was no running water, no indoor plumbing. His mother cooked on a woodstove that also heated her iron. A gasoline-powered washing machine out on the porch made “a godawful noise.” The electric co-op would change their lives. “When I drive down the road and see lines, I see comfort,” Grange says. “Without the co-op philosophy, all this area would have been without electricity for years.” Grange includes Aspen’s fight to secede Ed Grange recalls the beginnings of Vail. from the co-op in his book as well as stories like the laborer who didn’t come in to work until noon, explaining that Holy Cross “only pay[s] me half of what I’m worth and so I’m only going to work half the day.” Grange also chronicles the tragic death of lineman Lawrence “Dutch” Brooks, electrocuted in 1954. Grange incorporates enough details about transformers, substations and transmission line construction to delight utility aficionados. And he writes about those Greek sheep men in the Gore Valley. In the 1950s, the Gore Valley, now known as Vail, had no town in it whatsoever. Sheep far outnumbered people during the summers because a couple of successful sheep men from Utah, Gus Kiahtipes and Pete Katsos, summered their thousands of ewes, rams and lambs there. The Pulis family from Denver also owned a summer home in the valley. The first record of Kiahtipes, Katsos and Pulis requesting electricity from Holy Cross came in 1951. Grange writes that the co-op turned them down, noting: “Seasonal consumers who refused to guarantee the minimum revenue required to justify the construction of this lengthy line.” “These two sheep men, Gus Kiahtipes and Pete Katsos, kept pestering us to bring electricity to them,” Grange remembers. “We can’t do it,” he told them. “It’s only the two of you, and you’re only there for part of the year.” Kiahtipes brought his ailing sheep to Carter Jackson, a Glenwood Springs veterinarian, when the animals needed medical treatment. “Here would come Gus with sick sheep in the back of his Cadillac,” Grange remembers Jackson saying. Neither Kiahtipes or Katsos gave up easily, however, whether it was on ailing ewes or getting electricity. In 1958, the Holy Cross board finally agreed to build a singlephase line from Minturn to nearly the bottom of Vail Pass. Katsos and Kiahtipes got their electricity. Not long after that, new customers began signing up in the area. Curious, Grange looked into it and learned they were all members of the Transmontane Rod and Gun Club, whose members, he was told, were affluent people from Denver and elsewhere who wanted to fish and hunt on private property. “It was undercover,” Grange explains today. “It was actually Pete Seibert and Earl Eaton. They didn’t want anyone to know what they were up to. That’s how they were able to buy up most of the land in the upper valley.” Seibert and Eaton’s dream — Vail — was almost miraculous in how it came together, but they couldn’t convince Public Service Company, an investor-owned [continued on page 18] electric company, to build power lines to their project. February 2013 17

Building the first chairlifts in Vail: The power source is installed and workers use bags of boulders to test their operation.

The orginal gondola descends into Vail Village in the early 1960s.

[continued from page 17]

“Public Service said, ‘You’ll never make tionally acclaimed as a world-class this work, a ski area so far from Denver,’” resort. It was another step to an Grange remembers Seibert telling Holy economy built around skiing rather Cross’s pioneering general manager than ranching for Colorado’s high George Thurston in the spring of 1962. mountains and for Holy Cross Energy. The for-profit utility wouldn’t build the Today the co-op brings electricity to the lines without a hefty down payment. ski areas of Aspen, Aspen Mountain, “But we were already serving Aspen,” Buttermilk, Snowmass, Sunlight, Beaver Grange says. “We thought it was a good Creek, Arrowhead and Vail. idea.” “I think we’re the biggest ski area Thurston and Grange took it to the provider in Colorado,” Grange says. co-op board, pointing out that Holy Cross That does seem likely. had already built that single-phase line to It’s good news for Grange, who still Katsos and Kiahtipes, and that made the skis at age 84, although he usually sticks Gore Valley part of the Holy Cross service to Snowmass these days instead of skiterritory. The board approved the request ing all the local areas the way he did in to service Seibert and Eaton’s dream ski the mid-1990s. In those days, the meters area and village. “We’ll all be in trouble if on each lift at each area had to be visited you two are wrong,” Grange remembers monthly to check the reading. Grange directors saying. happily took on the task. “The main thing was that we had a “We were fortunate to be in an area A Holy Cross employee discusses power line construc- where we could develop the ski indusfoothold in the valley,” Grange says. tion plans in Vail circa 1962. “We already had lines, we just needed to try,” says Grange. convert them. We already had the right “Holy Cross was fortunate to end up of way and the poles.” with a lot of good people who made a lot of good decisions durGrange remembers Holy Cross serving Vail’s earliest lodges ing those years of growth and change,” says Richard Brinkley, with underground lines by the summer of 1962. That was the the co-op’s chief operating officer today. co-op’s first experience with building underground lines. “We did it as a family; that’s the co-op philosophy and George Public Service (now known as Xcel Energy) wasn’t the only Thurston made it happen that way,” Grange says. “I was so proud doubter. Thurston had a meeting with Mountain States Teleof all that.” phone and Telegraph Company regarding placing the phone Kristen Hannum, a Colorado native, is a freelance writer and edilines for Vail on Holy Cross’s poles. “You’re making a big tor living in Denver. This is her third story for Colorado Country mistake; they’ll never succeed,” Granger recalls the telephone Life. executives telling Thurston. Vail opened on December 15, 1962, but only a few runs were Go to to read more about the open because the snow had been terrible that year. Tickets were history of Holy Cross Energy and its pioneering manager free on that first day and just $5 for the rest of the season. Ed Grange. Despite that shaky start, within two years Vail was 18 February 2013 Septembere 2012 23


Sweet Sensations

Make sweet, fluffy marshmallows that melt in your mouth BY MONA NEELEY || PUBLISHER/EDITOR || MNEELEY@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG Top Choice Win our copy of Marshmallow Madness by Shauna Sever and try your hand at the “puffalicious” recipes. Visit www. coloradocountry and click on Contests for information. Deadline is February 18.

Tasty Coatings A basic marshmallow coating is 1 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar and 1 cup cornstarch. Sift them together and use this coating with any recipe. Add any flavor by whisking finely ground ingredients, such as spices (cinnamon or cocoa) with some of the coating. Or replace this coating with other ingredients, such as shredded toasted coconut, ground nuts or crushed graham crackers.


Surprise your special someone with light, sweet, homemade marshmallows this Valentine’s Day. Basic vanilla marshmallows only take about 20 minutes to make and 5 hours to set before they can be served. And there are hundreds of flavors, coatings and combinations that allow you to express your creative side. Just make sure you have a good candy thermometer and a stand for your mixer (or a willing loved one who can keep the mixer going while you stir the mixture on the stove) before you start. And watch the batter as it gains volume. Use your best judgment as the time may need to be adjusted because of altitude.

Raspberry Pink Marshmallows 1/3 cup sifted powdered sugar, for dusting 1/3 cup cornstarch, for dusting 4 tablespoons unflavored gelatin 1 1/2 cups water, divided 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract 2 cups granulated sugar 1 tablespoon light corn syrup 1/2 tablespoon raspberry liqueur red food coloring 2 egg whites, room temperature Combine the cornstarch and powdered sugar in a small bowl. Prepare a 9- by 13-inch pan by spraying it with nonstick cooking spray, and sprinkle a generous dusting of the sugar-starch mixture over the entire pan. Set the pan aside while you prepare the marshmallow, and save the remaining sugar/ starch mixture for later use. Whisk together the gelatin, ¾ cup cold water and vanilla extract and let the gelatin mixture soften for 5 minutes. Combine the granulated sugar, corn syrup and ¾ cup water in a medium pot over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved, then stop stirring and allow the mixture to come to a boil. Continue boiling until mixture reaches 260 degrees (hard-ball stage). While that cooks, set the gelatin mixture over low heat and stir constantly until the mixture is liquid. Add the liqueur and the desired amount of food coloring and stir. Remove from heat. Place the room temperature egg whites in the clean bowl of a large stand mixer fitted with the 20 February 2013

whisk attachment. Once the sugar syrup nears 245 degrees, begin to beat the egg whites. Beat them until they hold firm peaks. If the egg whites are ready before the sugar syrup reaches the correct temperature, stop the mixer until the sugar syrup is ready. Once the syrup has reached 260 degrees, whisk the gelatin mixture into the sugar syrup. Then, with the mixer running on low, carefully pour the hot syrup in a thin stream into the egg whites. Once all of the sugar syrup is poured, turn the mixer to medium-high. Continue to beat the marshmallow in the mixer until it is thick enough to hold its shape and is completely opaque. Depending on your mixer, this will take about 5-10

[recipes] minutes. Pour the marshmallow mixture into the prepared pan and smooth the top flat with a spatula. Let the marshmallow sit in a cool area for several hours or overnight to fully set the marshmallow. Once the marshmallow has set, dust your workstation with a generous layer of the sugar-starch mixture you used to prepare the pan. Flip pan facedown on the prepared surfaceand dust the top of the candy with more sugar-starch mixture. Spray a pizza cutter with nonstick cooking spray and cut the marshmallow block into squares of whatever size marshmallows you desire. Or dust cookie cutters with the sugar-starch mixture and cut shapes out of the marshmallow. Put some of the cornstarch mixture in a plastic bag with the marshmallow pieces and gently shake to coat the pieces. Homemade marshmallows are best served soon after they are made, but will keep in an airtight container. If making marshmallows doesn’t fit your schedule, try simply cutting shapes from flat Kraft StackerMallows and dipping them in fun food colors. Use them to decorate cupcakes, cookies or as fun snacks for the kids. Cut the shapes with small cookie cutters. Stick them on a toothpick and dip them in water tinted with food color. Stick the toothpick in Styrofoam and let the marshmallows dry.

Find more recipes for homemade marshmallows by visiting colorado Click on Recipes. February 2013 21 22 February 2013 February 2012 23


“Green” Flower Gifting Embrace local fresh-cut flowers for the greater good BY EVA ROSE MONTANE || ABUNDANTEARTHGARDENS.COM || GARDENING@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG


On the surface, a flower of any sort appears to be cheery, happy and good. But like most things, there is more to cut flowers than meets the eye. The truth is, with so many events worthy of giving fresh-cut flowers, the floral industry makes a huge impact on the environment, according to studies. With Valentine’s Day coming this month, it seems appropriate to join the effort in raising awareness about the impact of our floral decisions. Most cut flowers are grown in South American, African and Southeast Asian countries where regulations are much more relaxed than in the United States. Workers in those countries are generally underpaid and not unionized. Additionally, chemicals that were banned in the United States decades ago, such as pesticides, fungicides and herbicides, are heavily relied on in flower production in other countries. Those chemicals cause many health issues in the people who work with them, such as respiratory issues, skin conditions, birth defects and impaired vision. These dangerous substances also find their way into the water supply, which harms fish populations and reduces available drinking water for human consumption. And this is just during the production of cut flowers. The transportation of these cut flowers across continents and overseas in climate-controlled vessels contributes to global pollution. Furthermore, florists who work with these imported flowers over prolonged periods in the United States have complained of skin irritations and other problems. Many conscientious individuals who buy organic and fair trade goods and carefully read labels might buy a bouquet without ever knowing about the environmental and health costs behind their newly purchased posies. The good news is that there is an alternative to the standard practice. Ask your locally-owned florist shops if they offer locally-sourced flowers, organic flowers and products from “green” or sustainable growers. In Durango, for example, April’s Garden is an “eco” conscious florist whose owner, Amy Long, does everything she can to adhere to sustainable practices and support the local economy. She does business with local flower farms for fresh, sustainably grown, seasonal flowers that she can proudly offer her clientele. Long also peruses the farmers market as a source for her “green” flower selection. 24 February 2013

If your local florists don’t offer any environmentally responsible flower options, keep asking. It is generally the persistence, pressure and market demand from customers that will drive them to include such options. One green-label certification, Veriflora, was developed about eight years ago by a partnership between Whole Foods Market and Scientific Certification Systems. It is intended to standardize green labeling for the cut flower industry. According to Supermarket News, green labeling indicates the growers of the flowers treat their workers well, pay them a fair wage and give them benefits, such as health care and day care centers. In addition, green-label growers are environmentally responsible. So remember to make your fresh flowers worthy of giving, this Valentine’s Day.

Eva Rose Montane hosts a cutting edge series on gardening in Colorado. Read more gardening advice at coloradocountrylife. coop. Click on Living in Colorado and then Gardening.

[energy tips]


Options to improve efficiency BY JAMES DULLEY


What type of garage door is best to ensure the temperature in the rooms around it stay comfortable?

Source: Clopay

The most common garage door materials are wood, insulated steel, insulated fiberglass and aluminum and glass. Of these, the insulated steel or fiberglass offer the best efficiency because of its insulation value and the rigidity of the door remains airtight over its life. Many insulated steel doors are “wind rated” for severe weather. Even if your area doesn’t have frequent high-wind These insulated steel skin storms, install garage doors provide R-19 the horizontal panel insulation and a thick polymer coating to simulate galvanized steel real wood. supports across the inner surface of the door. As the door rolls up to open, the edges are not interlocked to support each other. Without the supports, the panels may flex and begin to form cracks over time. An insulated steel door is probably the least expensive design to meet your efficiency and comfort needs. Some foam insulated steel doors have insulation values as high as R-19. The foam inside the door can be either glued-in rigid polystyrene or blown-in urethane foam. Urethane foam has a higher insulation level, but either should be satisfactory. When choosing a steel door, look for one with a thermal break separating the outdoor and indoor metal skins to reduce heat loss. If you have children, look for pinch-resistance panels. These are designed to push a finger out of the panel joints as the door closes. If you want glass in the door, make sure it’s at least doublepane, insulated glass or low emissivity for better efficiency.


For more information on energy efficient garage doors visit Click on Energy Tips. February 2013 25


Organizing Your Tackle Box Should you go all out or keep it simple? BY DENNIS SMITH

Legislative APP 99¢

AVAILABLE NOW Interactive 2013 Colorado Legislative Directory App Colorado’s elected officials at your fingertips.

Or at Goggle Play or call 303-455-2700 for more information. 26 February 2013

I recently read an article in one of the big fly-fishing magazines. In it, the author described how anglers should organize their fly boxes so they can find precisely the fly they want at exactly the moment they want it without having to rummage through fly box after fly box to find it. It was a pretty good article. In the course of explaining his “foolproof system,” the author casually mentioned that he carried 1,100 flies in 12 different boxes in his fly-fishing vest, all of them coded by species, size and function. He also admitted to keeping an additional 500 specialpurpose flies in a tackle bag in the trunk of his car, just in case. He had boxes coded for attractors, deceivers and terrestrials; dry flies, wet flies and nymphs and streamers, larvae, pupae and various kinds of aquatic crustaceans. An additional box held damselfly, dragonfly and leech patterns, and a few more contained soft hackles, no hackles, emergers, stillborns, cripples and flies that floated listing slightly to port. OK, I’m exaggerating. But barely. “That way,” he said, “No matter where I’m fishing, I can be ready for anything, from a mysterious midge hatch to a mass migration of Mormon crickets.” (And an invasion of Peruvian red army ants, I’m to assume. Or pterodactyls, maybe?) Ready for anything? I’ll say. On the cover of that same magazine, a blurb in big, bold, black letters proudly announced, “46 New Fly Patterns Inside!” I could just see the guy who wrote the “Organize Your Flies” article frantically rearranging his collection to accommodate the 46 new flies. I also wondered if his head exploded in the process. I don’t know if it did, but I do know this: Some guys live for the moment when trout begin feeding selectively on midges or mayflies that hatch with their defective wings or rear legs or some other disability, so they can catch fish on their carefully crafted collection of crippled chironomids or stillborn mayfly duns. God bless them. We need these lunatic anglers in our ranks. These meticulous masters of the mundane are gifted with the unique ability to observe seemingly inane aquatic bug behaviors and translate them into profound angling discoveries. Without them, the rest of us would probably just continue to blunder along catching a fish here and there, pretending we know how and why. Personally, I grew weary of carrying hundreds of different fly patterns with me years ago. I fish with about a dozen, give or take. But now, when I’m on the stream and trout are only eating birth-defective bugs, I have an excuse for not catching them. I can say, “Yeah, I know they’re eating stillborn duns. I just don’t want to catch a fish that picks on cripples.” To which my buddies will say, “Yeah, right.”

Miss an issue? Catch up at Click on Outdoors.


Advertise in MarketPlace

Colorado Country Life goes to more than 190,000 readers. Call Kris at 303-9027276 to place your ad.

“No one’s ever achieved financial fitness with a January resolution that’s abandoned by February.” — Suze Orman February 2013 27

[classifieds] TO PLACE A CLASSIFIED AD Please type or print your ad on a separate paper. Indicate how many months you would like your ad to run and which month to start. There is a minimum of 12 words at $1.63 per word/month. Be sure to include your full name and address for our records. Check MUST accompany this order or call to pay by credit card. Send your ad to: mail: Colorado Country Life 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 phone: 303-902-7276 fax: 303-455-2807 email:

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Happy Sweetheart Day


Five Steps to College Academic Advising


Forty years ago, Terry O’Banion proposed a model of college academic advising. It appeared in what was then known as the Junior College Journal and has since been adopted and adapted by multiple community colleges and universities. The process of college academic advising is composed of five steps: 1. Explore life goals. A college education should ensure that every student has an opportunity to ask these questions: Who am I? Where am I going? What difference does it make? 2. Explore vocational goals. These are life goals extended into the world of work. 3. Choose a program. Once the college has provided an opportunity for students to consider life and vocational goals, the student must pick a program. At a community college with a diverse student body, the process can stagger the imagination. 4. C  hoose courses. Once a program is selected, students must choose courses for the immediate term and perhaps even for subsequent ones, too. 5. Schedule courses. Deciding when to take courses is no simple task. O’Banion goes on to propose that a team approach is best when it comes to advising. That approach, he says, should involve the student, faculty, professional counselors and special personnel including student assistants and community volunteers.

[funny stories] My young granddaughter asked me why she was part her mom and part her dad. I explained that when people get married and have a baby, half of the baby is from the mom and the other half is from the dad. Looking baffled, she asked, “How in the world will I find the man that has the other half of my baby?” Marion C. Mantz, Boulder

A group of seniors was sitting around talking about ailments. “My arms have gotten so weak, I can hardly lift a cup of coffee,” said one. “I know,” said another. “My cataracts are so bad, I can’t even see my coffee.” “My hands are so crippled, I couldn’t even mark an ‘x’ at election time,” volunteered a third. “I can’t turn my head because of the arthritis in my neck,” said the fourth. Several nodded in agreement. “My blood pressure pills make me dizzy,” said another. “I forget where I am and where I’m going,” another volunteered. “I guess that’s the price we pay for getting old,” said an old man, wincing and shaking his head. The others agreed. “Well, count our blessings,” said one senior cheerfully. “Thank God we can all still drive!”

Lila Taylor, Stratton

My 2-year-old dog, Bliss, is my constant companion. She even sleeps under the covers with me at night. I regularly work on the computer into the wee hours of the morning. After several nights of unsuccessful attempts to get me to bed by whining and begging with her cute little eyes, I guess she thought I was not getting the hint. Now she fetches my pajamas and brings them to me when she thinks it’s bedtime. Charlene Palmer, Pocatello, Idaho We pay $15 to each person who submits a funny story that’s printed in the magazine. At the end of the year, we draw one name from those submitting jokes and that person will receive $150. Send your 2013 stories to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or email Don’t forget to include your mailing address, so we can send you a check. February 2013 29



Enchanted Country

Not all of us have the dexterity or desire to race down a mountain. You don’t have to ski to enjoy winter activities in Colorado. Colorado is the ultimate backdrop to outdoor fun, regardless of weather. Sure, winter brings us tubing, ice skating and ice fishing, but dig a little deeper and you’ll



find several other amazing wintertime activities. For example, this year Ice Castles is in Steamboat Springs. Imagine entering glistening towers of sculpted ice, complete with colorful LED-lighted tunnels, caves, columns and archways. It’s an icy wonderland waiting to be explored. Brent Christensen’s brainchild, Ice Castles, developed while dabbling with icicles and sprinklers, trying to find ways to entertain his children in the wintertime. As word got out, Christensen’s simple concept became a mustsee for folks all around, and in 2009 he created his first large-scale fortress of ice at Zermatt Resort in Midway, Utah. In 2011, Ice Castles made its Colorado debut in Silverthorne.

In Fraser, you can go on an unforgettable, 45-minute sled ride pulled by eight Siberian and Alaskan huskies. The trail system at Dog Sled Rides of Winter Park sits on the edge of Winter Park, giving riders outstanding views of the valley and snow-covered mountains. Rides cost between $135 and $210 per sled. For more information, call 970-726-8326 or visit


Four days of fun activities are in store at Pagosa Springs’ Winterfest. Get a taste of some of the finest local foods at Soup for the Soul on February 7. Or work up the gumption and try jumping into the frigid San Juan River for local charities on February 10. Other key events include Nordic Club races, the Outlaw Snowdown Music Festival, a snow sculpting contest, sled racing and the Snowman Stomp Snowshoe Romp. Enjoy these events February 7-10 at various locations in Pagosa Springs. For a complete list of activities, dates and times, go to events/winterfest-weekend-2013.

Glenwood Caverns Hidden within Iron Mountain are the Glenwood Caverns and Historic Fairy Caves, where it’s always a comfortable 52 degrees. Take a tour and see thousands of formations including stalactites, stalagmites and cave bacon. For more information, call 800-530-1635 or visit web.vail. net/glenwood-caverns-fairy-caves. 30 February 2013

Colorado Country Life YW February 2013  

Colorado Country Life YW February 2013