Lloyd Dorsey, spokesman for Greater Yellowstone Coalition, said that Jackson's bighorn sheep have declined in recent decades. "Any activities that would adversely affect winter range of bighorns should be mitigated or avoided if at all possible," he stated. Noting that Grand Teton National Park closes some areas to protect wintering sheep, park service spokeswoman Jackie Skaggs said that the tram has been a concern for bighorns since 1996. But the forest service excluded the tram project, scheduled for late 2008 completion, from review under the National Environmental Policy Act. Despite the new tram carrying 650 passengers per hour, the forest service stated that most skiers accessing Grand Teton National Park did so via Sublette Chair and Bridger Gondola rather than the tram. "This will result in a negligible change to the number of persons accessing backcountry areas," the Forest Service wrote, acknowledging that an interagency bighorn sheep group is addressing impacts to the ungulate's declining numbers and fragmented habitat.
- Snow Reports