Federal Judge Halts Wolf Creek Land Swap, Tripping Up Texas Billionaire

Federal Judge Halts Wolf Creek Land Swap, Tripping Up Texas Billionaire

Skiing

Federal Judge Halts Wolf Creek Land Swap, Tripping Up Texas Billionaire

Hiking above Wolf Creek Pass | Photo: Robert Tadlock

For over three decades, Billy Joe “Red” McCombs has worked tirelessly to develop a village near the base of Wolf Creek Ski Area but it may be another decade before the Texas billionaire’s plans get any traction.

Related: Knife Ridge Staircase Huck – Wolf Creek, Colorado

According to the Durango Herald, a federal judge recently ruled against the development saying a prior land swap between the US Forest Service and a separate entity under McCombs’ leadership is invalid. The judge went on to indicate that the US Forest Service failed to properly vet the swap and its potential environmental impacts.

The proposed development | Image: US Forest Service

In his decision, Senior Judge Richard P. Matsch said that prior to any land swap ,federal officials with the US Forest Service must properly weigh any and all environmental impacts before giving their approval. He went on to say, “The Forest Service failed to do that.”

The judge claims that the Forest Service’s environmental review was limited to assessments conducted by research groups sympathetic to the development and its ends. Still, the development group out of Texas could appeal the decision or start the land swap process from scratch. Right now it’s unclear whether the battle to develop Wolf Creek will continue or if Red McCombs and his partners have had enough.

Find the entire Durango Herald article here: Federal judge halts Village at Wolf Creek land swap

 

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