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Know the West

Peak preserved


Hikers on the summit of 13,462-foot Treasury Mountain, near Crested Butte, Colo., may not have known it, but until recently they were standing on private property. That changed Aug. 21 when the Wilderness Land Trust purchased 200 acres of private land inside the Raggeds and Maroon Bells-Snowmass wilderness areas. Much of the land, including Treasury's summit, was owned by Standard Metals Corp., which had patented its mining claims. Mark Pearson, president of the trust, said the group's biggest concern was the development of summer homes and permanent camps for outfitters, not mining. The trust used $115,000 in private donations and loans to buy the land, which it intends to sell to the Forest Service and then repay the loans. The Wilderness Land Trust can be reached at 1101 Village Rd., Suite 2A, Carbondale, CO 81623 (970/963-9688).