Royal Gorge reducing winter hours of operation |

Royal Gorge reducing winter hours of operation

Emma Garrard/Sierra Sun

Royal Gorge, Ice Lakes Lodge, and Rainbow Lodge will all be cutting back to five days a week rather than seven this winter.

“It’s an issue of demand, an issue of cost, and it’s a staffing issue,” said Mike Livak, project manager with Royal Gorge.

Business is normally slower on Tuesdays and Wednesdays ” the two days the resort and lodges plan to be closed ” Livak said.

“Sometimes it costs us more to open the doors than if we don’t,” Livak said.

As a small resort, staffing seven days a week can be a challenge as well, he said.

Royal Gorge will open back up seven days a week during holiday periods, however, Livak said.

As for Royal Gorge’s development project that could add 950 new units to the Serene Lakes area, Livak said the owners are taking their time.

“We’re fortunate to have patient and reasonable partners who would rather take the time we need,” Livak said. “The more information we get before CEQA (environmental review of the project) the better.”

Developers are now studying water supply, sewage treatment capacity, and a

second access into the Serene Lakes area required by Placer County, Livak said.

Seeking out ways to route a second access, Livak said topography and land ownership are proving challenging.

“Going over the ridge between us and Soda Springs is probably not feasible,” Livak said. “That puts us on Pahatsi and going east or west from their until we hit Donner Pass Road or 80.”

Another option is to go south ” but that could mean following the North Fork of the American River all the way down to Foresthill, he said.

Joe Gray, Donner Summit resident said with little news coming from Royal Gorge, residents are starting to wonder.

“It makes it rife for rumors ” do they have a secret plan they’ll roll out after the election or are they heading for bankruptcy? I’ve heard them all,” Gray said. “Who knows, but the general opinion I’ve heard is, ‘Gee, what’s going on?'”

The Donner Summit Area Association is hosting a Community Prosperity Summit Saturday, Nov. 8.

“We will be discussing the revitalization of Soda Springs and the Old 40 corridor,” said Pat Malberg, president of the association. “Revitalizing the corridor not only economically but socially ” there used to be a real community here before the interstate bypassed it.”

Representatives of Royal Gorge and Nevada and Placer counties will be at the meeting, Malberg said.

The meeting will be Saturday, Nov. 8 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Judah Day Lodge in Sugar Bowl.

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