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Mountain News: Brittle and artificial, like Whistler?



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Durango to save water

DURANGO, Colo. – Nowhere in the West is the story of water scarcity told with such drama as in Las Vegas. Despite the jungle waterfalls, Venetian-type canals and ooh-ahh Bellagio waterworks, the story in the suburbs is of bone-dry front yards and marginal grass even in the backyards. In fact, the water district has been paying homeowners to pull up their sod.

The situation is nowhere nearly as dramatic in Durango, but just the same, city officials hope to stretch existing supplies by 10 per cent by mandating landscaping techniques that will use less water, reports the Durango Telegraph. Kentucky bluegrass won’t be banned outright, but new developments will be encouraged to adopt the principles of xeriscaping, integrating more drought-tolerant plants into the landscape.

The city water-treatment plant is running at half capacity, but the population is projected to triple.


A rare combination

ASPEN, Colo. – Anita Thompson has a book out about her late husband, the writer Hunter Thompson. She tells The Aspen Times that the book is in response to the hundreds and hundreds of letters she received after his death in 2005. “They looked at Hunter’s lifestyle as a primary factor in his work, and I just wanted to correct that.”

She began working for Thompson in 1999 and married him in 2003, helping him produce his final book, “Kingdom of Fear.”

In her preface, she writes that being married to Thompson was like “living with a teenage girl trapped in the body of an elderly dope fiend.… Hunter had the energy, the vitality and the curiosity of a young girl (and the) depth of wisdom… that came with his age and experience.”


Bear breaks into house

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. – A bear estimated to weigh 600 pounds was shot and killed after it broke into a home in the early morning. The family locked itself into a bedroom and called police. The arriving cop said the bear charged him, and he shot at it, but only grazed it. The bear fled, and after a search was found under a neighborhood balcony. It was killed, authorities tell the Tahoe Daily Tribune.

Bear activists report that fire, drought, and poor food crops have resulted in a large number of bears being killed in California this year. The old record of 20 will be doubled if current trends continue, they say.