TRPA Approves Heavenly Epic Discovery Project

Lake Tahoe, Stateline, NV — The Governing Board of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency on Thursday unanimously approved Heavenly Mountain Resort’s proposed Epic Discovery Project to allow new year-round outdoor recreational opportunities on already developed portions of the ski area on U.S. Forest Service land.

If also approved by two other agencies with jurisdiction, the Epic Discovery Project will be among the first of its kind in the nation, following Congress’s passage of the Ski Area Recreational Opportunity Enhancement Act of 2011 that allows ski resorts operating on Forest Service land to offer expanded year-round recreational opportunities.

“The Epic Discovery Project represents an exciting, collaborative model for sustainable recreation that successfully balances environmental preservation and education with economic revitalization and improved outdoor recreational opportunities, all consistent with TRPA’s Regional Plan,” said Joanne S. Marchetta, Executive Director of TRPA.

The expanded activities at Heavenly Mountain Resort are designed to suit a wide range of visitors. They include zipline and sky cycle tree canopy tours, a mountain bike park and trails, ropes courses, and interpretive and educational tours to teach visitors about the Lake Tahoe Region’s cultural and environmental resources.

“We’re hoping to create new friends of the forest by teaching people about Lake Tahoe’s extraordinary natural environment through this project,” said Andrew Strain, Vice President of Planning and Governmental Affairs for Heavenly Mountain Resort.

TRPA approved the Heavenly Epic Discovery Project following an extensive environmental review process. One of the Agency’s mandates is to improve outdoor recreational opportunities in the Lake Tahoe Region.

The environmental review for the Epic Discovery Project was completed by TRPA, Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, and U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. The project is scheduled to be considered for approval by the Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board in May, and the U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit has issued a draft record of decision to approve the project.

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency leads the cooperative effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region, while improving local communities, and people’s interactions with our irreplaceable environment. For additional information, contact Tom Lotshaw, Public Information Officer, at 775-589-5278.