Prickly Pear Ice opens in Kremmling

Thanks to a new business in Kremmling, ice and purified water will be more available to stores and individuals. Kremmling business entrepreneur Dakota Docheff-Cordle and her husband Branden Cordle started Prickly Pear Ice, an ice and water dispenser located at the Kremmling Car Wash at 1103 Eagle Ave. 

The business celebrated its grand opening on Saturday, Oct. 22. Docheff-Cordle said this is their only dispensing machine for now, but they hope to open more in the county. 

Customers can fill up their own 1-5 gallon containers with filtered water that’s also been sanitized by ultraviolet light. Prickly Pear also offers 10-pound bags of ice, or customers can fill their own coolers. Docheff-Cordle said she’s glad Prickly Pear opened in time for hunting season, and they plan to operate year-round. Water is 25 cents a gallon and ice is $2.75 for 10 pounds. Cash or cards are accepted. 

Docheff-Cordle, left, helps a customer during Prickly Pear’s grand opening.
Meg Soyars/Sky-Hi News

First responders recover body of missing man on Lake Granby

On Sunday, a man fell into Lake Granby after his kayak capsized in open water. Emergency responders successfully recovered his body on Monday.

According to a news release by the Grand County’s Sheriff’s Office, the Grand County Communications Center had received a 911 call at approximately 6:45 a.m. on Sunday, reporting a man in the water on Lake Granby in the area of Deer Island.

The sheriff’s office, Grand County Emergency Medical Services, Grand Lake Fire Protection District, Grand Fire Protection District No. 1, Colorado Parks and Wildlife and staff from the Beacon Landing Marina all responded to the scene to locate the victim.

“While responding to the area, responders experienced massive snowfall, blowing and drifting conditions and zero or near-zero visibility,” the sheriff’s office wrote in the news release.

Search operations were halted at approximately 2 p.m. on Sunday due to harsh weather.

On Monday, first responders resumed their search with more favorable weather conditions, as well as additional resources. They located the man’s body on the lake bed at approximately 7:30 p.m.

“Responders utilized specialized equipment from the Headwaters Water Rescue Authority and the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Marine Evidence Recovery Team, in addition to cellular forensics assistance provided by the Kremmling Police Department,” the sheriff’s office stated in the news release.

When locating the victim, responders used an underwater remote operated vehicle to remove him from the lake. He was not wearing a personal flotation device.

“Staff from the sheriff’s office and coroner’s office have been in contact with the decedent’s family who had arrived from out-of-state on Monday,” the sheriff’s office stated.

The man’s body was placed the care of the Grand County Coroner’s Office. The coroner will release the man’s identity, along with cause and manner of death, when appropriate.

“Unfortunately, over the last several years, Grand County has experienced a significant number of water-related emergencies and recoveries,” Sheriff Brett Schroetlin stated. “The formation of the Headwaters Water Rescue Authority encompasses law enforcement, fire and EMS personnel, who plan and prepare for these operations and then immediately respond to these incidents to bring closure to the family.”

Harsh weather, including snowfall and high winds, made the search on Dec. 3 difficult. First responders recovered the man’s body on Dec. 4.
Grand County Sheriff’s Office/Courtesy Photo

Guest column | Grand County Cycling Club Development Team completes a very successful season

Over the past several years the Grand County Cycling Club has had a small development team for middle school mountain bikers. This year the team has expanded significantly and progressed markedly under the direction of coaches Daren Jacobson and Steve and Niki Pardoe. Participation went from a handful of students to more than 18 this year. 

According to Steve Myers, head coach of the Middle Park High School Mountain Bike Team, he believes that the development team creates a fun environment for middle school riders where they can improve their skills.

“The end goals of the team are to foster a love of this lifetime sport, instill confidence, and encourage these young athletes to graduate to the Middle Park High School Mountain bike team and compete in the Colorado Cycling League’s racing program,” Myers said.

This summer and fall the development team coaches provided a structured, organized program that benefited riders of all levels.  Their practices involved skills training and a lot of miles on bikes all over the county. The riders loved being part of the team. 

Local middle school students work on their biking skills with the Grand County Cycling Club Development Team. Pictured in the back row: Steve Dominguez, Daren Jacobson, Steve Pardoe and Parvis Farzin. Pictured in the middle rows: Wyatt Jacobson, Chase Williams, Scuba Dominguez, Knox Williams, Graham Huber, Chase Fosha, Max Pardoe and Max Pococha. In the front row is: Avery Jacobson, Saylor Archie and Niki Pardoe.
Grand County Cycling Club/Courtesy photo

Saylor Archie, a development team participant says her experience was challenging and fun.

“I liked riding Fraser Canyon the best, and I loved riding trails with steep technical aspects,” Archie said. 

Parvis Farzin said that her favorite part of riding with the team was having a friendly and supportive group of riders. She also gained a lot of knowledge about local bike trails.   

“All the trails are fun. I like the berms on Broken Spade and Phased and Confused – I like going up it,” Farzin said. 

Max Pardoe noted, “My favorite part of riding with the team this year was the experience of riding with many new people, as well as some old friends.  My biggest improvement was getting more confident riding in a large group.  My favorite trails to ride are the technical up-hills at Granby Ranch.” 

Avery Jacobson added that she enjoyed riding with the middle school mountain bike team and biking with kids her age. She also liked that they rode a ton of different trails. 

“I think I got in better shape riding with the team consistently. I also think my downhill skills improved because of the variety of trails we rode,” Jacobson said.

Several team athletes also participated in the Winter Park Resort Mountain Bike series races this summer, including Avery and Wyatt Jacobson and Max Pardoe.

The development team is open to all levels of middle school riders. If you are interested, please join us next summer and give it a try. For more information contact coach Jacobson at 303-885-3228 or coach Pardoe at

Volunteers needed for Granby water and sewer advisory board

The town of Granby is searching for volunteers to fill vacancies on the water and sewer advisory board for the south service area, which will consist of five members.

Applications should include a letter with qualifications and either be mailed to Deb Hess at P.O. Box 440, Zero Jasper Avenue, Granby, Colorado 80446, or emailed to by Dec. 7 at 5 p.m.

The board will be responsible for making recommendations to the town board regarding water and wastewater matters in the combined service area including water and sewer user rates, plant investment fees for new connections to the water and sewer lines, and cost-saving proposals.

The Granby Town Board of Trustees will make all final decisions relative to such matters after receiving and considering the recommendations of the water and sewer advisory board.

According to a press release from the town, the board will comprise of one individual from the following areas: Granby Ranch subdivision, Grand Elk subdivision, the district, the town at large and the combined service area at large. 

The board of trustees will appoint members to the water and sewer advisory board at their meeting on Dec. 12. The term for members on the board will be three years, except for their initial appointment.

In these initial appointments, one member shall be appointed for one year, two members shall be appointed for two years, and two members shall be appointed for three years, according to the press release. This board will also elect one member to be the chair.

The water and sewer advisory board will be responsible for keeping its own minutes and schedule their meetings as-needed.

For more information, please call 970-887-2501 ext. 201.

Granby Ranch announces delay of opening day

Granby Ranch has announced a postponement of their opening day of ski operations for the 2023-2024 winter season.

In a news release, the resort stated that the postponement is due to “unusually warm weather” conditions. The original opening date had been set for Friday, Dec. 8.

“Our dedicated team is diligently engaged in snow production, striving to expedite the opening of lifts and skiable terrain as soon as possible. The delay is expected to be brief, and we’ll be sure to notify our guests and the community as soon as we have more information,” the resort stated in the release.

While Granby Ranch’s prepares for the opening of ski operations, their retail shop (11 a.m. to 5 p.m.) and Bluebird Bistro (11 a.m. to 8 p.m.) are open daily for the season, located in the base lodge. The First Chair Café will also open on Dec. 8, to serve coffee and breakfast items.

“The team is working hard to maximize snow production to provide the safe and enjoyable ski and ride experience our guests have come to expect. We do not anticipate an extended delay and we look forward to seeing you soon,” stated Roxanne Hoover, Granby Ranch general manager.

BLM bans use of M-44 ‘cyanide bombs’ on public lands

The Bureau of Land Management announced last week it will ban the use of spring-loaded cyanide traps on the public lands managed by the department, which includes roughly 250,000 acres in Eagle County.

The cyanide devices, known as M-44 traps, are activated by driving a small pipe into the ground which contains a spring-loaded ejector and a sodium cyanide capsule. The top of the trap is baited with a scented substance to attract animals, and when the animal pulls on the material, a cloud of cyanide powder is shot into the air surrounding the device.

M-44 traps were, for years, used by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s secretive Wildlife Services agency to kill coyotes in an effort to protect livestock on public lands. But M-44 traps have drawn a firestorm of controversy for the collateral damage they’ve inflicted on the public, killing family pets and even being connected to the death of humans.

In 2003, Utah resident Dennis Slaugh was on U.S. Bureau of Land Management land near the Colorado border when he touched a loaded M-44 and was sprayed with cyanide. He suffered high blood pressure, difficulty breathing, daily vomiting, and an inability to work as a Caterpillar D8 driver “because he is too weak to climb up into the machine’s rungs,” the Salt Lake Tribune reported in 2008. Slaugh died in 2018; his death certificate indicates that cyanide poisoning from an M-44 contributed to his death.

In 2007 and 2008, petitions were circulated calling for the Environmental Protection Agency to suspend the use of sodium cyanide and sodium fluoroacetate, otherwise known as Compound 1080, another chemical compound used to kill predators. Compound 1080 has been banned in Colorado since 1972, but is still in use in other states and is occasionally found to be still in use in Colorado, as well. In 2001, approximately 30 dogs and cats and 35 birds were poisoned by 1080 in Grand Junction, and in 2009, a wolf that had traveled into Eagle County from Yellowstone National Park was killed by Compound 1080 in Rio Blanco County.

In 2017, Wildlife Services in Colorado agreed to temporarily halt the use of sodium cyanide following a lawsuit from WildEarth Guardians and the Center for Biological Diversity which challenged a Colorado Parks and Wildlife plan to kill cougars and bears “in a scientifically unsupported attempt to boost mule deer populations,” according to the Center for Biological Diversity.

But a few years later, Wildlife Services began using M-44 traps once again, killing nine coyotes with the devices in Colorado in 2022. The Center for Biological Diversity circulated a petition in June, asking the BLM to ban the use of M-44 traps.

“Because it’s federal public land, (the BLM) can decide what uses to allow on this federal land, and what uses to ban, and this went all the way up to the director of the BLM, and they agreed to not allow Wildlife Services to place these anymore,” said Collette Adkins, an attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity’s carnivore conservation program. “So they can still shoot coyotes, or use traps, for example, but they can’t use these cyanide devices, which are particularly indiscriminate and cruel, as far as we’re concerned.”

Adkins said the most high-profile incident regarding an M-44 trap involved a 14-year-old Idaho resident Canyon Mansfield, who was less than a football field’s length from his home when he encountered an M-44 and triggered it, thinking it was a sprinkler head.

The device spewed toxic orange cyanide powder that killed his dog in front of him and left him injured, as well, giving him severe headaches and moments where he couldn’t feel his arm.

“The United States government put a cyanide bomb 350 feet from my house, and killed my dog and poisoned my child,” Theresa Mansfield, Canyon’s mother, told the Guardian newspaper in 2020.

Adkins said Canyon was likely spared due to the wind direction at the time.

“That was on BLM land right behind his house,” she said.

Adkins applauds the BLM for the decision to ban the devices, saying it’s a positive step toward completely eliminating M-44 traps.

“This is such a big deal because the BLM administers so much land across the West,” Adkins said. “I think it’s probably a sign that even the people that are policing these are sick of the danger and they’re sick of the bad press. I think these are on their way out.”

This story is from Vail Daily.


Which Colorado ski resorts saw the most snow from this weekend’s storm?

December and winter arrived with a bang in Colorado.

The fluffy stuff just kept coming all weekend long, shutting down Vail Pass and Rabbit Ears Pass near Steamboat Springs, causing accidents on roadways across the mountains, and canceling all three days of World Cup competitions at Beaver Creek. Berthoud Pass even closed over the weekend due to safety concerns.

The powder also piled up at ski resorts, drawing crowds despite poor visibility.

The most “intense snow” on Sunday targeted Eldora and Winter Park, according to OpenSnow, which recorded 12 inches at each ski area during the day.

Here’s how the snow stacked up at mountains across the state as of Monday morning, according to

Storm totals

Steamboat Resort – 33″
Winter Park Resort – 26″
Copper Mountain Resort – 23″
Vail Mountain – 22″
Breckenridge Ski Resort – 21″
Keystone Resort – 15″
Loveland Ski Area – 14″
Arapahoe Basin Ski Area – 12″
Beaver Creek – 11″
Aspen Highlands – 11″
Aspen Mountain – 11″
Buttermilk – 11″
Snowmass – 11″

This story is from Summit Daily.

New general manager joins C Lazy U team

C Lazy U guest ranch in Granby has welcomed their new general manager, Jeremy Belnap, this November.  

“Belnap will oversee the property management, manage staff members and ensure that C Lazy U Ranch remains an unforgettable vacation destination,” C Lazy U wrote in a news release.

With 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Belnap joins the C Lazy U team after spending nearly a decade as a general manager at other top-rated luxury guest ranches. Born in Litchfield, New Hampshire, Jeremy graduated from Methodist University in North Carolina with a bachelor’s degree in hospitality, restaurant and resort management.

“We are proud to appoint Jeremy as general manager of C Lazy U Ranch,” Don Bailey said, who is the co-owner of C Lazy U along with Leslie Stanford and Dean Singleton. “We are confident he will uphold our legacy of more than a century, continuing to provide genuine western hospitality for our guests and members, while maintaining and preserving our 8,500 acres of protected land.”

Early in his career, Belnap gained experience in multiple leadership roles covering all areas of hospitality. He worked at Marriott Hotels and Resorts in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, and Park City, Utah, as well as at Bohemian Hotel Savannah Riverfront of the Marriott Autograph Collection in Savannah, Georgia.

Belnap later joined the The Ranch at Rock Creek in Montana and Magee Homestead as general manager. During Belnap’s tenure at these properties, Magee Homestead was initiated into the Relais & Chateaux collection, where the ranch achieved and maintained a five-star rating.

“I’m excited to join the world-class team at C Lazy U Ranch as my family and I make our move to start a new chapter in Colorado,” stated Belnap in the news release. “The rich and storied history of the ranch provides an authentic setting for memorable vacation experiences, and I’m honored to join a team that has curated these experiences for generations of families.”

Nestled beside Willow Creek with views of the Continental Divide, C Lazy U Ranch is open year-round. The ranch is currently gearing up for the holiday season, which include both Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Plenty of activities abound once snow falls, such as ice skating, cross-country skiing, sleigh rides, tubing and snowmobiling. On top of all their traditional winter activities, C Lazy U offers indoor activities to keep guests warm, including horseback rides around the arena, archery, a game room, gym and full-service spa.

C Lazy U’s main lodge is nestled in snow.
C Lazy U Ranch/Courtesy Photo

Fraser drafts ordinance to create downtown development authority

The Fraser Board of Trustees drafted an ordinance to call an election for the purpose of creating a downtown development authority at its Nov. 15 regular meeting. The board will consider the ordinance at its Dec. 6 regular meeting.

Dalton Kelley is an attorney from Butler Snow, a Denver law firm advising the town of Fraser on the DDA formation. Kelley presented to the board.

What is a downtown development authority?

DDAs are quasi-governmental entities whose primary objective is to create a development plan for the central business district, and facilitate the economic development of properties within the district boundaries. They plan and develop public facilities, like streets, sidewalks and parking garages in the district.

The area highlighted in yellow on the map is where the proposed downtown development authority district will be if approved by Fraser voters.
Town of Fraser/Courtesy image

At least five, but no more than 11 members serve on the DDA. The local governing body in Fraser, the board of trustees, appoints members to serve on the DDA. One member must also be a member of the Fraser Board of Trustees.

In an election, qualified electors vote to create a DDA. Qualified electors are owners of property within the DDA boundary or people who are leasing property within the boundary. If you both live and lease property within the DDA boundary, you still only get one vote.

Employees of the Town of Fraser can not serve on the DDA.

The Board of Trustees considered including the Lions Ponds in the DDA to create extra revenue for the development of that area. However, it decided not to include the ponds as that area does not generate revenue and isn’t a part of Fraser’s central business district.

Fraser Town Manager Michael Brack said, “This isn’t going to be a silver bullet to pay for all of the town’s projects,” when arguing against the inclusion of the Lions Ponds.

How’s it funded?

Tax increment fundraising typically funds DDAs. Municipalities decide whether to fund a DDA through property tax or municipal sales tax. This type of increment fundraising “is a new source of tax revenue, not an additional tax, that would not be available but for new investment,” according to Fraser’s website.

The local governing body “freezes” property taxes or municipal sales taxes at the date of the creation of the DDA. When funds generated from municipal sales tax increase above the frozen amount set at the date of adoption, the local governing body assigns excess revenue to the DDA.

When property tax evaluations increase — when property within the DDA boundary becomes more valuable, funding for the DDA increases. Trustees referred to the property tax funding as an improvement funding mechanism.

As the DDA improves property tax evaluations in the central business district, it receives more funding.

Fraser’s Board of Trustees plans to consider the ordinance to call the election to create the DDA at its Dec. 6 regular meeting.

In August, Avon voters decided to create a DDA through a special election, according to reporting from Ash Lohman for Vail Daily. Avon created the authority to fund public facilities and community housing.

Other business:

  • Fraser received a $1.5 million grant for the development of Clayton Court. The town applied for the grant to get water for the lots on Clayton Court, which the Board of Trustee announced they received at the Nov. 5 regular meeting.
  • The Board of Trustees passed Ordinance 503, which changed the town code to allow the Fraser Board of Trustees to provide economic incentives to developers. Trustees decided they wanted to provide Byson Investments incentives at their Oct. 4 regular meeting and amended the code to be able to do so.

First responders search for capsized kayaker on Lake Granby

On Sunday, a man fell into Lake Granby after his kayak capsized in open water. First responders were unable to locate the man, but resumed search operations on Monday, Dec. 4.

According to a news release by the Grand County’s Sheriff’s Office, the Grand County Communications Center received a 911 call reporting a man in the water on Lake Granby in the area of Deer Island.

The sheriff’s office, Grand County Emergency Medical Services, Grand Lake Fire Protection District, Grand Fire Protection District No. 1, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and staff from the Beacon Landing Marina all responded to the scene to locate the victim. Grand County Road and Bridge provided plows for responders to further access the area.

“While responding to the area, responders experienced massive snowfall, blowing and drifting conditions and zero or near-zero visibility,” the sheriff’s office wrote in the news release.

The person who reported the accident was contacted by emergency personnel, according to the release. The person stated that he and his friend, who had fallen into the water, had spent the night on Deer Island. Sunday morning, they had begun kayaking to their vehicle on the shore. The island is located near the center of the lake.  

“As they attempted to kayak across the open water, the wind caused his friend’s kayak to capsize and he fell into the lake,” the sheriff’s office stated. “The reporting party was unable to save his friend before he went underwater, but was able to get himself back to shore.”

First responders searched the water with assistance from CPW, as well as a boat from Beacon Landing Marina. However, the heavy winds and choppy water which caused the victim to capsize also made the search difficult. Search operations were halted at approximately 2 p.m. on Sunday due to the harsh weather.  

Harsh weather, including snowfall and high winds, made the search on Sunday difficult. Weather is predicted improve on Monday.
Grand County Sheriff’s Office/Courtesy Photo

The search for the missing man resumed on Monday with additional resources. The Colorado Parks and Wildlife Marine Evidence Recovery Team assisted, along with specialized equipment.

“The forecasted weather on Monday is predicted to be more favorable for search operations,” the sheriff’s office stated.

The missing man is believed to be a 21-year-old from the Denver Metropolitan area. The sheriff’s office stated they are working to contact his immediate family.

First responders will continue search operations at Lake Granby on Monday, Dec. 4, with specialized resources.
Grand County Sheriff’s Office/Courtesy Photo

This article will be updated as information is received.