Proposed camp would be at danger’s door

Recent letters concerning the proposed Ascendigo development are a warning as to what’s coming to this valley. Urban sprawl is now pushing developers into surrounding rural areas bringing noise, congestion, increased traffic, lights illuminating the skies at night, destroying our valley’s heritage forever.

With this reality, what concerns us most up here in Missouri Heights is fire! We live in a peculiar micro-climate where sustained winds, starting in early spring through late fall, can blow all day long, sometimes reaching gusts of 60 mph. It is just the nature of this landscape. We live with the knowledge, after being evacuated from our homes during the Lake Christine fire and being put on evacuation alert again during the Grizzly Creek fire last summer, that any spark, dropped cigarette, catalytic converter touching dry grass or lightning strike could turn Missouri Heights into a raging inferno.

Remember those nighttime pictures of the Lake Christine fire? That could be a future glimpse of Blue Lake, Basalt, or Aspen. Under these windy conditions we have up here, firefighters have told us the only way to stop a fire would be by using aircraft …hours after it started. In comparison, the fire north of Boulder last fall burned at a rate covering three football fields a minute. Nobody could outrun that.

So why put a “recreational camp” (their words) with hundreds of people living, visiting and milling around campgrounds holding large outdoor fundraising events and adding 450-plus cars a day to our rural dirt roads in the middle of a fire zone?

Look at recent headlines. “Big fire threat ahead this summer” … .We understand the challenges of autism. We applaud Ascendigo’s mission. But forcing such a large, ever-expanding commercial development into the middle of a high-fire hazard zone makes no sense for surrounding neighborhoods, towns and especially all the young lives that might be lost if a fire broke out. Entering the 21st year of Western drought, Missouri Heights is the last place to put Ascendigo.

David Aguilar