Ski Yellowstone developer John P. Hall said Monday he still plans to develop the downhill ski resort on Hebgen Lake that he proposed 10 years ago but would not say if he will finance it with $2.3 million he borrowed recently from a West Virginia bank.
In November, Hall mortgaged some of the 1,100 acres he owns near Hebgen Lake to borrow the money, according to records filed last month at the Gallatin County clerk and recorder's office.Hall, 47, would not say in a telephone interview if he plans to use the money to develop Ski Yellowstone, 12 miles northwest of West Yellowstone or a new resort he is planning.
Speaking from his office in Sherrie John Manor, outside of Mechanicsburg, Pa., Hall said, "As per my usual policy of not speaking to the press, I will not comment on this, either.
"But I . . . would like you all to know that I am still committed to developing Ski Yellowstone," he said.
Hall announced recently that on Dec. 23 he will open Ski Snow Peak Inc., a new downhill ski resort in Juniata County, Pa.
The mortgage documents at the county show Hall mortgaged land in four different sections he owns north and south of Hebgen Lake, near Hebgen Mountain. Hall listed Ski Yellowstone Inc. and Ski Snow Peak Inc. as the companies that would repay the notes to the First Community Bank of Princeton, W.Va.
Ski Yellowstone Inc. and Hall have been involved with lawsuits and personal legal problems. The resort has been opposed by environmental organizations, including the Friends of the Earth and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, because wildlife experts have said it could harm the grizzly bear and pollute Hebgen Lake.
Should Hall decide to go ahead with the Ski Yellowstone resort, he must file new plans with the county subdivision review board and with the Gallatin National Forest. He must also prove that the resort will not harm the grizzly, since a Forest Service study released last year said that the resort would have negative impacts on the bear.