though I wouldn't begin to suggest our XC90 is remotely as off road capable as a Touareg [one of the reasons I want one], when I hear blanket statements like this, I generally find they are made by people that have never even been behind the wheel of an XC90. This Volvo all wheel drive system has done nothing but impress the hell out of me especially given no low range and just all season rubber. I've already done things with this vehicle that I didn't think it could do out at the cabin. It seems that as long as you even have 1 wheel that can get traction, you will keep moving.No offense, but your XC90 wouldn't make it, period.
The five-man team has numerous roads to open in Ouray County and jeep tours, a major tourist industry in Ouray, can only wait. Those trails consist of Yankee Boy Basin, Red Mountain Town, Corkscrew, Brown Mountain, Engineer Pass and Imogene Pass. However, deep snow is making progress slow and the team is several weeks behind. The department started plowing Yankee Boy on May 5. The usual 10-day plowing project is already weeks behind, but Miller was hoping to finish there yesterday and move onto Red Mountain Town at the top of Red Mountain Pass.
“We’re just going to have to bail right back in,” he said.
In a normal year, Yankee Boy usually has 2 to 3 feet on the road and is easy to work, he said. But this is no normal year, and where the crew started plowing, the road was covered with more than 8 feet and it only got deeper.
Also hindering progress were several snowslides that haven’t run in almost a century.
“They brought down 100-year-old trees ... all twisted up,” Miller said. He said the slides took several 10-hour days to move.
andLast year the crew finished up around July 2, with a goal to have the jeep trails open by the Fourth of July weekend. However, this year is looking grim.
Miller said he hopes they can have the areas ready by late July, but the projects could take them into August. Right now the crew is working two employees with one dozer, but the county might rent another to move things along quicker, Miller said.
County Road & Bridge equipment operator Dave Leonardi reported Wednesday that Camp Bird Road is now cleared of snow as far as the outhouses at Yankee Boy Basin.
"It's just incredible how much snow there is up there," Leonardi said, noting that the road usually takes three to four days to plow out, and this year took three to four weeks. "It was huge. There were huge avalanches we had to plow through."
Leonardi and partner Bob Rummel have been putting in four ten-hour days per week to get the Camp Bird Road open. It is typically the first road of the season to get plowed out. This year they had extra help from Harry Castle, owner of the Ruby Trust Mine, whom Leonardi said has been working on his own to get the road open to recommence his mining operations.
The next task Leonardi and Rummel face is to restage their plow in the vicinity of Red Mountain Town and plow out Corkscrew Pass. Next in line will most likely be Engineer Pass, then Imogene Pass.
Leonardi said he is going to propose that the county rent another dozer to speed the opening of high-country roads for the summer season. "We could do twice as much," he said. Currently, with just the one dozer, Leonardi and Rummel take turns plowing and spotting each other.