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The environment desk at Aspen Public Radio covers issues in the Roaring Fork Valley and throughout the state of Colorado including water use and quality, impact of recreation, population growth and oil and gas development. APR’s Environment Reporter is Elizabeth Stewart-Severy.

Spring Gulch celebrates 30 years with Ski for Sisu

Courtesy of www.springgulch.org

The Mount Sopris Nordic Council is hosting the 25th annual Ski for Sisu to raise funds for the Spring Gulch cross-country trails. It’s also a celebration of the area’s storied history.

At its start, the Spring Gulch trail system was a necessary and creative solution to growing conflicts between snowmobilers and Nordic skiers; it created a separate network just for skiers.

The Ski for Sisu event honors Paul Lappala, who helped establish the network. He died in an accident while doing grooming work on the track. Lappala was Finnish.


“Sisu is a Finnish word which means perseverance, endurance, hard work, and there’s a plaque for him up at Paul’s Point,” said founding board member Wick Moses.

The event includes three courses designed to appeal to skiers of all levels. It raises funds to pay for maintenance of the trails, which are located in the Thompson Divide and are free to the public.

The skiing kicks off this Sunday at 9:30 a.m. at Spring Gulch.

Aspen native Elizabeth Stewart-Severy is excited to be making a return to both the Red Brick, where she attended kindergarten, and the field of journalism. She has spent her entire life playing in the mountains and rivers around Aspen, and is thrilled to be reporting about all things environmental in this special place. She attended the University of Colorado with a Boettcher Scholarship, and graduated as the top student from the School of Journalism in 2006. Her lifelong love of hockey lead to a stint working for the Colorado Avalanche, and she still plays in local leagues and coaches the Aspen Junior Hockey U-19 girls.
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