The Ski Area Environmental Scorecard, a non-industry, independent mechanism that gives skiers and boarders a way to assess the environmental performance of their favorite Western resorts, has come out with its latest national findings.
Only one Pacific Northwest resort - Mt. Bachelor - made the Scorecard's Top 10 in the rankings.
Using such criteria as maintaining terrain within existing footprint, preserving undisturbed lands from redevelopment, protecting threatened or endangered species and their habitat, preserving/protecting environmentally sensitive areas, protecting water quality and the resorts' water and energy efficiency, the Scorecard grades resorts from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific.
Oregon's Mt. Bachelor carded a 74.8 scoring, slotting it into the No. 9 spot on the Ski Area Environmental Scorecard. Two Washington resorts - Mt. Baker and Mission Ridge - graded fairly well with 68.2 and 65.4, respectively.
But most of the other Northwest resorts fared poorly, with four Washington resorts - Crystal Mountain (45.6), White Pass (41.3), 49 Degrees North (39.9), and Mt. Spokane (36.1) - ranking in the Scorecard's bottom 10 (as a comparison, the two worst scoring resorts were Colorado's Copper Mountain at 31.9 and Idaho's Sun Valley at 34.3). Mt. Ashland, one of only four Oregon resorts graded, finished just outside the worst category with a 48.7 grade.