Telluride Helitrax takes skiers to the backcountry by helicopter; over the past decade, it has averaged 35 to 50 service days a year, sources at the BLM said. A service day is equivalent to one person per day.
Telluride Helitrax is seeking permission to carry skiers to 16 jump-off points within roughly 37,000 acres for up to 600 service days. The BLM has issued a draft environmental assessment in which it recommends granting a five-year- permit allowing eight jump-off sites on 14,183 acres for up to 300 service days.
The BLM is accepting public comments on the assessment until Dec. 3.
The assessment says Telluride Helitrax boosts the winter economies of Silverton and Telluride, assists in avalanche control along major roads and is available for backcountry search-and-rescue work.