Outrage is indeed coming from every quarter at news that Maine's Coastal Mountains Land Trust proposes to go along with a forest fragmenting plan hatched by the town of Camden, to install a competition two mile "skate ski" track in a thickly wooded pocket valley, where today moose and bears prowl unhindered by man.. Here's an update, followed by what you can do.
The project would gut a five acre thickly forested headwaters valley on Ragged Mountain's northeast slope, to cram a 16 foot wide two mile long "skate-skiing" track with numerous hairpin turnings along witt support facilities on lush wild forest land that is part owned by Coastal Mountains Land Trust and partly by the Town of Camden.
Coastal Mountains Land Trust will make the whole mess possible by letting the "multi use trail" be cleared bulldozed and culverted in part through their "protected" land on Ragged Mountain. See MAP 1.
Why? Because just after passing through the land trust property, the trail would reach its high point, back again on town of Camden property and rejoined to the Camden Snowbowl Resort. There, the town proposes a major septic field and what appears to be half a dozen potential structures See rectangles in upper part of MAP 2. In return, CMLT get to connect their own separate hiking trail directly to the Camden Snow Bowl's planned hi speed ski track. In summer, the trail, like other Snowbowl trails, would be opened to hikers and unleashed dogs, which will inevitably drive away the bears, moose, foxes deer and other wildlife from a now-fragmented forest.
WHAT YOU CAN DO. Read this summary of issues (pdf). then do two things:
1. Ask Coastal Mountains Land Trust to pull out of the deal, or else make public their reason for supporting this destructive project. CMLT should also make public its dealings with the anonymous donor and others surrounding this plan. Contact Scot Dickerson or Kristen Lindquist at CMLT by email: info AT coastalmountains.org. Or by phone 207-236-7091.
2. Ask the Camden Planning Board to reject the plan. On July 20, 2011, the Camden Planning Board is going to consider this plan at its evening meeting, then vote on whether to approve it, disapprove it, or table it pending more information. Let them know what you think. Is fragmenting such a large and irreplaceable coastal mountain forest worth it? Who or what is the anonymous funding interest promoting this skate-ski development in such a fragile place? Turning the headwaters of the Goose River into a septic field is an insult to Rockport. Rockport citizens should be outraged that their headwaters of their river be defiled so casually by the town of Camden.