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Tom Ross

Stories by Tom

Routt County Building Department studying possible cut in permit fees

With construction picking up, Routt County Manager Tom Sullivan may ask the Commissioners’ approval to offer full-time status to a building inspector who has previously been on seasonal employment status.

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41st Cowboy Downhill attracts a big crowd to base of Steamboat Ski Area

Miss Rodeo Virginia Kaitlyn Gill was in the field as 97 cowboys and cowgirls took on the dual slalom at Steamboat, which requires them to rope a tall cowgirl in a duster and sling a saddle on a nervous horse before they sprint across the finish line to glory.

Airline board recommends boosting Houston summer flight to daily schedule

Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. official said that 20 of 48 scheduled flight segments on United Express to and from Denver during the six-day period between Christmas and New Year's were canceled, and 10 more were more than two hours late.

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Google Street View rows viewers down virtual Yampa Canyon whitewater adventure

The new virtual whitewater float comes at a time when the future of the Yampa and the canyon it flows through in Dinosaur National Monument are growing topics of discussion.

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Flat Tops Ranch Supply is catering to the agricultural community in a Steamboat alley

Flat Tops Ranch Supply in Steamboat is behind Circle 7 Gallery at 1009 LIncoln Avenue, and just a few steps away from Steamboat Meat and Seafood.

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Routt County Clerk Kay Weinland has retired to St. George, Utah, after 20 years in the courthouse

Kay Weinland, who was first sworn in as Routt County clerk in January 1995, and outgoing County Commissioner Steve Ivancie were honored at a reception that filled the Commissioners’ Hearing Room in the courthouse Monday evening.

Routt County is in the midst of revisiting the 1999 Stagecoach Community Plan

Denver resident John Troka, who is president of the Stagecoach Property Owners Association, told the Routt County commissioners his members are eager for better water and sewer service.

Avalanche info center is a state agency but relies on donations for 25% of annual budget

Northwest Colorado residents will have an opportunity to learn what makes the Avalanche Information Center run while kicking up their heels to the music of Missed the Boat Jan. 10 at the Ghost Ranch Saloon.

Routt County Road and Bridge cleared to spend $440,000 on grader, remodel

Routt County Commissioner Doug Monger said the new motor grader will consume significantly less fuel, which can add up over the 10,000 hours the county puts on its graders before trading them in.

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The Royal Hotel in Yampa was both a piece of history and important community gathering place

The Royal Hotel in Yampa was like something out of an old Zane Grey Western novel. And in fact, Grey stayed at the Royal while writing his book, “The Mysterious Rider.”

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2014 Year in Review: Top news stories

From problem bears poaching food from trash cans and sneaking into condominium hot tubs to Steamboat’s first foray into recreational pot sales, 2014 was a year to remember.

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Nordic skiing helps Steamboat doctor with Parkinson's disease

Steamboat Springs has an increasingly active Parkinson’s support group including people who are among the 1.5 million Americans living with the disease and their families and professionals including exercise therapists, yoga instructors and yes, ski instructors.

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Routt County's $540.2 million in real estate volume through November easily surpasses all of 2013

There is a three-month supply of single-family homes in downtown Steamboat Springs where 12 listings are active and the median price last year for homes was $538,750 at an average price per square foot of $339 for typically smaller homes

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Last morning of 2014 officially the coldest of the year in Steamboat at 26 below

New Year’s Eve morning in Routt County was the coldest of the entire year. Senior forecaster Chris Cuoco confirmed that the 26 degrees below zero reported at the Steamboat Springs Airport on Wednesday was the coldest of 2014. It was even colder in Craig — 29 degrees below zero.

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Experiences of ski vacationers flying to Steamboat on Monday were all over the trail map

Passengers from Houston to Steamboat diverted to Grand Junction, then Denver, but other travelers called their flights "perfect."

Tap water cleared for drinking in South Routt town of Phippsburg

The news that it was safe to drink tap water in Phippsburg again was relayed by a reverse 911 call.

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Miscommunication over Steamboat Community Center's kitchen policies didn't thwart holiday dinner

Local nonprofits improvised the preparation of free community Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners after walk-in coolers at the Steamboat Springs Community Center were declared off limits.

Tom Ross: Christmas Eve menus are lasting family traditions

My father lit a roaring fire in the fireplace and burned our Christmas wish lists, telling us that Santa’s elves could read the smoke signals from the North Pole. Of course, we believed every word.

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Fresh snow in forecast for Christmas Day in Steamboat Springs

The snow depth on the west summit of Rabbit Ears Pass is 39 inches after 9 inches of new snow fell there on Dec. 19. The 9.7 inches of water contained in the snowpack is 123 percent of the median for Dec. 23.

Phippsburg's drinking water woes just in time for the holidays

Residents of Phippsburg, 23 miles south of Steamboat, were advised Tuesday to boil their drinking water after turbidity (cloudiness) in the incorporated community on Colorado Highway 131 exceeded state standards.

Snowstorm leads to 1 flight cancellation at Yampa Valley Regional Airport on Sunday

The American Airlines flight from Chicago diverted to Denver due to weather at the Hayden Airport, deplaned, de-iced, then re-boarded passengers, left Denver and arrived into Hayden.

Heavy snow on top of leftover Thanksgiving ice storm results in avalanche warning

There has been one confirmed report of a human-triggered avalanche close to Steamboat in the past seven days. The slide broke 14 inches deep and ran an estimated 200 feet.

Retired Air Force colonel chosen to lead Yampa Valley Regional Airport

Booth has managed air fields in Germany, Alaska

New Yampa Valley Regional Airport Manager Kevin Booth said it was his tenure as chief operating officer at Spangdahlem Air Force Base, Germany, from 2002 through 2004 that most closely compares to his new role at YVRA.

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Early holiday skiers flying into Steamboat ahead of snowstorm

Vacationing skiers who stay through the weekend should enjoy a good dose of powder beginning Sunday, with the storm intensifying Monday.

Multi-agency conservation effort brings stretch of Yampa River south of Steamboat into public domain

“This property is extremely important, both from a conservation perspective and as a place where people can fish, hunt and hike.” – BLM's Tim Wilson

Routt County's improving economy confronts a shortage of workers

Yampa Valley Data Partners declared a labor shortage in Routt County in its Fast Facts release on Wednesday based on a statistical analysis that shows employment opportunities are out of balance with the work force.

Yampa Valley Housing Authority explores means to address rental housing shortage in Routt County

With the recognition that there is an acute shortage of rental apartments in Steamboat, there is renewed hope that the Yampa Valley Housing Authority's land on Elk River Road could be used for community housing.

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Steamboat-based air ambulance logs 100th mission in 9 months

Classic Air Medical employs eight medical crew members, four pilots and a full-time mechanic to be ready to respond to a call at all times.

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Methodist church in Steamboat welcomes Jewish symbol of the 'Festival of Lights'

United Methodist in Steamboat was the first of three churches to make the offer to host the menorah after the Routt County Commissioners declined to make a place for the symbol of the Jewish Festival of Lights on the courthouse lawn.

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Snow returns to Steamboat's forecast, but split storm track constantly evolving

Meteorologist Mike Weissbluth predicts Steamboat could get three bouts of snow, with the best chance for meaningful accumulations coming during the day Sunday and resuming during the day Monday.

Water quality in the Yampa River Watershed is good for now

The Upper Yampa River Watershed comprises 1,880 square miles from the river's headwaters in the Flat Tops to the confluence with Elkhead Creek.

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Routt County says 'no' to menorah on the lawn in front of historic downtown Steamboat courthouse

An example of county cooperation with the religious community here is a large green “Where to Worship” sign on the courthouse lawn at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Sixth Street that informs visitors of all faiths where they can attend services.

Mickey's Fund sends toys from Steamboat to cheer patients in Denver's Children's Hospital

Steamboat Sotheby's International Realty and Wells Fargo Bank again are collecting toys this year to take to Denver's Children’s Hospital on behalf of Moose Barrow’s Mickey’s Fund.

County focuses on standout candidate for airport manager

The candidate for airport manager will have an opportunity to witness the airport staff ramping up for the busy season as flights from Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston and Los Angeles land at the airport in Hayden Dec. 18.

Era of the Super Pass: Can ski areas succeed with symbiotic relationships?

Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing Rob Perlman said his ski area has modest expectations regarding Steamboat’s ability to attract skiers from Toronto and Quebec via the Intrawest Passport, but it’s definitely a goal.

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Era of the Super Pass: Ski resorts forced to adapt and change with demographic cycles

The world is turning 30 and 60 at the same time, and neither one bodes well for the destination ski resort industry, says veteran ski industry executive and educator Tim Cohee.

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Era of the Super Pass: Vail's 'transformative' purchase of Park City issues a challenge for destination ski resorts like Steamboat

Competition among destination ski resorts in North America may never be the same, now that Vail Resorts CEO Rob Katz has successfully executed a plan to acquire Park City Mountain Resort.

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Era of the Super Pass: Steamboat Ski Area invites guests to invent their own 'framily'

A Steamboat Passport group could include the members of someone’s college rock band, their softball team, church group or former colleagues. And Passport holders may use their days singly, for long weekends or long vacations.

Routt County commissioners expected to discuss permitting extended camping from 31 to 180 days

Routt County is signaling that it intends to conduct public sessions to discuss alternative forms of permanent housing in a separate process that would involve a series of works sessions in 2015.

Tom Ross: Steamboat's Winter Expo runs gamut from organic honey to Uncle Shiny

One of the pieces of news gathered at the Chamber Winter Expo is that Honey Stinger, of Steamboat Springs, is selling organic honey in addition to the company’s wildly popular Honey Stinger energy chews, gels and waffles.

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Crew member for Steamboat's Rocky Mountain Youth Corps tabbed for national award

Rocky Mountain Crew Leader Christina Bodznic said that in Steamboat at the end of the summer Gracie Billingsley showed her commitment to public service by urging her fellow crew members to donate gear and clothing to Lift-Up of Routt County.

Fairfield Inn owner eyes new 84-room hotel on U.S. Highway 40

The new hotel would be built a short distance from Bob Amin’s existing Fairfield Inn across U.S. Highway 40 from the Steamboat Christian Center. And the new hotel won’t necessarily be branded a Marriott product.

Backcountry skiers watching to see if sun can heal ice layer in mountains surrounding Steamboat

On Rabbit Ears Pass Thursday morning hardened clumps of snow in the trees warmed in the sun and began to fall from the branches of lodgepole pines to clatter noisily over the icy surface of the snowpack.

Steamboat Ski Area's airline marketing program takes Yampa Valley Boys on the road

The Yampa Valley Boys, Steve Jones and John Fisher, should succeed in reinforcing Steamboat’s image as a cowboy ski town; their latest CD, “New Home on the Range,” charted at number 11 in the top 30 Western albums.

Routt County commissioners agree noise, visual impacts of zip line off side of Rabbit Ears mitigated

Jason Cobb told the Routt County Board of Commissioners that the new nylon-coated WhisperLine would greatly reduce the noise of his zip line trolleys traveling down the steel line.

Interviews begin this week to find new manager for Yampa Valley Regional Airport west of Steamboat

The candidate who becomes the new airport manager will set his or her wheels down in the middle of the busy ski resort season at Yampa Valley Regional Airport, which sees the bulk of its commercial airline traffic for the year in a span of 16 weeks.

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Snowfall hits town; Steamboat resort officials predict 'near historic' opening

It’s ironic that a perfectly timed powder dump makes a challenge to open Steamboat Ski Area. But the promise of untracked snow is always a boon to Wednesday’s Scholarship Day, the traditional opening of the ski area.

Talks underway between Ski Corp. and United on renewing Houston flights in summer 2015

Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. exec Rob Perlman said the flights overall were nearly three-quarters full and their financial performance finished up well under the maximum revenue guarantees provided by the community..

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Crossan's Market in Yampa clears another grant hurdle

Croissan's Market was built in 1903 and continued operating as a community market into the 1964. When it was closed, many of the original fixtures, and even merchandise remained in place, making it a virtual museum display.

Air service board revisits summer flights from Texas

The United Airlines flight between Houston and Hayden had an eight-week run last summer from June 26 to Sept. 1 with some weekday blackouts during the last two weeks of August.