Homewood Mountain Resort thins forest | SierraSun.com

Homewood Mountain Resort thins forest

David Bunker
Sierra Sun

Chippers purr and workers bustle among the trees at Homewood Mountain Resort.

This is not your typical ski lift building and prepping for snow that ski resorts undertake during the summer. At Homewood, chipper crews are steadily clearing the 1,260-acre mountain of dead and dying wood and small trees.

It’s a project that has taken a lot of work and an estimated $250,000 alone this year.

Part of that price tag includes two state-of-the-art chippers, one of which runs on rubberized tracks and is remote controlled. The remote controlled chipper can navigate between trees in the forest, allowing workers to clear otherwise inaccessible portions of the mountain.

But the work will protect Homewood, the West Shore communities and Lake Tahoe from a possible catastrophic wildfire, says Rick Brown, vice president of JMA Sierra Ventures, the owner of Homewood Mountain Resort.

Neighboring property, littered with dead and dying limbs and thickly wooded, is “the tinder box you keep writing about and hearing about,” said Brown.

“We want to get that threat of catastrophic fire out of the way,” said Brown. “Our neighbors need that.”

Check in Tuesday’s Sierra Sun for the complete article