There’s more to the Crystal Valley trail story |

There’s more to the Crystal Valley trail story

Scott Condon is making an apples-to-oranges comparison when he puts Wilderness Workshop and the Crystal Valley Environmental Protection Association into the same category of “prominent environmental organizations” (“Crystal Valley trail debate exposes rift among Carbondale-Redstone environmentalists,” Dec. 21, The Aspen Times).

CVEPA board member Peter Westcott’s off-highway trail development stance, while waxing poetical about his lifelong tenure as an environmentalist, was almost as curious as his accusations of Wilderness Workshop being bought off by donations. Perhaps Condon should have done a little investigative journalism for this article and asked CVEPA’s resigning members what caused their disillusionment.

As well, it may have been good journalism to disclose that Dale Will (yes, the same Dale Will of Pitkin County Open Space and Trails) is a longtime CVEPA board member and past president. Is there any question about where the allegiance falls in this so called environmental organization? Yet another CVEPA board member stood up at this same Board of County Commissioners meeting to boast about the lack of wildlife in the Bear Gulch area as added incentive for the off-highway trail alignment that would invade this abundant and precious habitat.

To quote, “I was just up there last week and there was no wildlife at all! Nothing!” Is this shortsighted anecdotal assessment of wildlife habitat the words of the leader of an environmental organization? Contrast this to the moving words of Wilderness Workshop Board member Karin Teague, who encouraged the BOCC to re-evaluate the trail plan in this present and very grave environmental climate complete with devastating wildfires and barely existent stream flows. Finally, by discrediting Wildnerness Workshop, Westcott can conveniently discredit the results of Rick Thompson’s wildlife study, an absolute must for this self-proclaimed environmentalist to feel justified to push for a self serving trail alignment.

Edie Engstrom


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