Media Center

“It’s the Heart of the Village”
PO Box 216
Jackson, NH 03846
December 15, 2010

Dear Friends,

This fall started like all other years. The trails were brushed out, the equipment maintenance was complete, the new rental skis and snowshoes were ready to go and the ski shop was brimming with exciting gear and equipment. The JSTF’s Board had long-term and capital plans complete and moving forward. The economy finally seemed like it was picking up a bit. With snow, this could finally be a great year for the JSTF.

It’s the time when you want to take a deep breath, sit back and stretch for just a moment while anxiously anticipating the moment the first snow flies. Then the Earth moved . . . literally! In less than a few heart beats, everything changed — unstable soils on a short section of the trail collapsed when two small earthquakes hit the state. Part of the Ellis River Trail fractured and slid towards the river. Less than one hundred meters of what’s often referred to, as the “crown jewel” of the JSTF’s trail system just became too narrow and too unstable to support the big machines we use to groom trails.

Thom Perkins, working very closely with the US Forest Service’s geologists and local staff, did everything possible to mitigate the damage and save the trail. The Forest Service will allow the trail to remain open this winter, but the fact is that at about the halfway point, the Ellis River Trail has changed. We have established a temporary “work-around” for this winter which allows skiers to continue up the trail. However the Forest Service is requiring us to construct a reroute next summer around the damaged area.

In past years, I’ve written to you asking for your help to cover the costs of keeping Jackson Ski Touring Foundation the first class facility that it is. Even in the snowiest of years, daily ticket receipts and yearly memberships no longer cover all that is involved with keeping JSTF at the top of its game. This year I am making a special and urgent request: Unbelievably, due to the terrain and the nature of the trail, in order to build a permanent solution to a 100 foot problem, we must construct nearly 2000 feet of new trail. The USFS has approved the design of this reroute. It’s possible that the Ellis River Trail can be “whole” again for the 2011-2012 season. The relocation costs will near the $40,000.00 mark. That is simply not in the budget. Even if we push back our capital and long-term plans a few years, we need your help to get this project done.

So, this year’s “ask” is not for JSTF’s long-term health, it’s for help with an immediate and critical need – restoring your favorite trail -- the Ellis River Trail. Please be as generous as you can.

Thank you,

Bob Kantack, President
Jackson Ski Touring Foundation

Jackson Ski Touring Foundation is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, and your donation is 100% tax deductible to the extent permitted by law. More information on the web at www.jacksonxc.org