Bernie's Report - October 07, 2003

Work in Progess

Thought I�d take advantage of the glorious Indian Summer, go for a stroll, and give you a glimpse of the work in progress at the resort. FAR is spending somewhere around $3.5M on ski hill enhancement and infrastructure improvements that are required for continued development at the resort. The two major ski hill enhancement projects are the installation of new snow making equipment and a re-cabling of the electrical power system for the ski lifts. Infrastructure work includes major road work at the intersection of Hwy. 3 and Ski Hill Road as well as the installation of services and an access road that is required to subdivide Highline �Lot14� into 6 residential/duplex lots.

At the base area, modifications are being made to the guest services area, the retail space and the spruce-up of the good old DayLodge looks pretty good. I for one am glad that the old Daylodge will be around for a while yet. I would really miss the Griz Bar after a fine day in the powder! The guest services area is being enlarged. It has taken over the old ski school area. The coffee shop (�The Mean Bean�) is being enlarged and relocated to the courtyard side of the Cornerstone building, where Carosella Artworks used to be located. I understand that a new temporary building will be located in the courtyard to house the retail ski shop. This building has not yet arrived on the scene.

Down at the highway several projects are underway. The new highway interchange is almost complete. The signage is going up today and it looks to me that will be it. The traffic engineers have concocted quite an interesting arrangement of lanes and barricades. All designed, I suppose, to ease and speedup the flow of traffic through the intersection. There are no traffic lights but a series of single purpose lanes separated by raised medians, about 1 foot high.

I wonder how snow will affect the operation of the lanes. I�m not quite sure how the snow will be removed from the center lane (with foot high barricades on either side of it and opposite direction through lanes on either side of the barricades, it will be difficult to plough and it looks to me that snow blowers would deposit the snow on the through lanes ??? ) Also, if the lane dividers become obscured it could be quite confusing for visitors who are not familiar with the system. Then there�s the merge� but that�s a story for another time!

Also at the highway, work is in progress to dig a new water well and put in the lines under the highway. The new well is required to supply the snow making equipment that is being installed. The old Fernie Alpine Resort highway sign is being renovated. The bark was peeled from the log structure and the logs have been stained. The sign area has been rebuilt and is awaiting new letters. Looks good! In fact many of the signs around the resort are being replaced with new log signs.

The old Highline Subdivision Lot 14 has been carved up into 6 single family/two family lots. 3 are accessed from Highline Drive (across from Lizard Creek) and 3 are accessed from a new road off Boomerang Way. Since these 3 lots are adjacent to our house, my wife Linda, has instructed me to inform the purchasers of these lots (who may be reading this) that they must seek her approval of their plans before they commence construction. {g}

Snow making is being installed up the Lizard Run and Dipsy to the top of the Elk Chair (the Bear�s Den) I understand that a water line for treated (potable) water will also be run to the Bear�s Den area for future use.

Last season there were some electrical problems and unscheduled lift stoppages. The solution: New electric power cables are being installed for the ski lifts. There is trench to the top of the Bear Express with new cables in it.

All in all, it�s good to see that RCRI is investing some money into the ski hill. Very little in the way of upgrades have been done to the ski hill in the passed couple of years and these projects are very much needed if FAR is to remain competitive.

Keep up the good work guys!

Bernie -

The snow making water lines up Dipsy

and down Dipsy

and all the way up to the Bear's Den

The power cables up The Bear

and down from mid-Bear

Trenching under the hwy and the renovated (uncompleted) sign

The new hwy interchange system

6 new lots in Highline!