Aspen Skiing Co. wants to expand Sam’s Smokehouse, build ski patrol facility at Snowmass |

Aspen Skiing Co. wants to expand Sam’s Smokehouse, build ski patrol facility at Snowmass

Staff report

Aspen Skiing Co. has applied to the U.S. Forest Service to expand the Sam’s Smokehouse Restaurant and construct a new ski patrol facility at Sam’s Knob at Snowmass Ski Area.

Skico also wants to install two underground fiber optics utility lines to improve communications and data transfer to and from various on-mountain facilities, including restaurants, according to the White River National Forest.

All the projects would occur within previously disturbed areas and no new tree clearing would be required. The projects are consistent with the 2015 Snowmass Mountain Master Development Plan, according to the Forest Service.

A Forest Service document said Skico wants to add 3,000 to 5,000 square feet onto the northwest corner of Sam’s Smokehouse. Skico did the grading when it built the restaurant in 2008. It anticipated the expansion.

There is a need for additional lunchtime seating, particularly during holiday periods, at Sam’s, the document said. “This existing seating deficit currently results in crowded conditions and long wait times during peak periods,” according to the Forest Service.

The propose ski patrol facility would replace a temporary structure about 100 feet south of the top terminals of the Village Express and Sam’s Knob chairlifts.

“The building’s main floor would be approximately 1,050 square feet and the basement would be approximately 950 square feet,” the Forest Service scoping document said. “A 450-square-foot deck would be constructed.”

The main floor of the patrol building would have a public “greet” room, kitchen, dispatch office, accident investigation station, patrol director office and conference space.

The exterior of the building would match the exterior of Sam’s Smokehouse, with forest green siding and a copper siding seam metal roof.

Skico wants to construct the projects this year. The Forest Service is considering categorically excluding the projects from detailed environmental analysis “due to the minimal amount of new disturbance,” according to a notification by White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams.

The public can comment on the project by March 3. Written comments must be submitted to: Scott Fitzwilliams, c/o Monte Lutterman, Mountain Sports Ranger, Aspen-Sopris Ranger District, 620 Main Street, Carbondale, CO 81623, FAX (970) 963-1012. The office business hours for those submitting hand-delivered comments are: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

Statements can be emailed to Monte Lutterman at

Comments may also be submitted electronically at


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