Mountain News: Crystals at Jackson Hole intended to aid healing 

click to enlarge WWW.SHUTTERSTOCK.COM - Smokey quartz is believed to help with 'letting go.'

JACKSON, Wyo. – Two crystals can be found at the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, an attempt to produce healing and protectiveness at the resort. They were placed there last winter indirectly because of the retirement of Jerry Blann, the long-term chief executive of the ski area.

"We named a (run) after him, Jerry's Way, but that got me thinking: what would I want as my legacy on the mountain?" Connie Kemmerer, the resort's co-owner, told the Jackson Hole News&Guide.

About the same time, she was introduced to Marta Barreras, a Hawaii-based feng shui master who had worked since 2015 with Rob Deslauriers. Deslauriers is a ski mountaineer of note (he has skied from the summit of Mt. Everest) and a real estate agent in Jackson Hole, a valley frequented by an uncommon number of billionaires. He also is a crystal user.

One thing led to another and ultimately a smoky quartz, a stone believed to help with letting go, was placed at Solitude Station, a two-minute ride up the gondola from the base. The larger crystal, a 1,361 kg chunk of milky white quartz, mined in Brazil, was located at the base, called Teton Village. It is supposed to help relieve distress.

Kathie Chandler, who uses crystals in a holistic healing practice at Wilson, a hamlet near the ski area, tells the News&Guide that she believes she has detected a different energy in Teton Village since the crystals were placed there. "They're intensely powerful and intensely huge."

A record price for land sale at entrance to Banff

CANMORE, Alberta – Two residential lots along the Bow River in Canmore, at the gateway to Banff National Park, recently sold for $6 million.

That's believed to be a record for residential land in Canmore, reports the Rocky Mountain Outlook. The previous high-market was $4.3 million at a site being redeveloped into townhouses and condos.

These two vacant lots have 64 metres of river view frontage as well as unencumbered views of Mount Lady Macdonald. Of course, there are no bad views in Canmore.

After a big fire, figuring out electrical resilience

BASALT, Colo. – Brainstorming has begun in Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley after a 5,058 hectare fire that nearly caused Snowmass Village, portions of Aspen, and all the surrounding areas to lose electricity on the July 4 weekend last year.

The Lake Christine Fire had taken out three transmission lines, and flames were licking up a wooden pole of the fourth and final transmission line near Basalt when firefighters arrived.

Holy Cross Energy, the primary electrical co-operative, has partnered with Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) to explore how to make the Aspen area more resilient not just in the event of wildfire but in many situations.

Consider gas pumps, which require electricity to operate. Could dedicated solar and battery storage be used to provide backup power, allowing customers to continue to pump gas during an outage?

Microgrids represent another opportunity. They would allow each community or neighborhood to retain power independently in the case of a grid power outage. The project will likely focus on designing a pilot microgrid in a small region that already contains generating assets, such as near a solar farm. For example, a solar farm is proposed in the Woody Creek area east of Aspen, where the writer Hunter Thompson used to hang out.

In a post, the Rocky Mountain Institute pointed out that resilience is not just about emergency preparedness, but also should take into account a range of considerations from blue sky to black-sky days. This core concept was reflected in many of the ideas that were developed at a workshop conducted in early April.

Many first responders and other community organizations reported having diesel or natural gas backup generators. This provides an effective and simple way of ensuring the lights stay on, but most stakeholders reported they only get used about 30 minutes in a typical year. Solar coupled with storage could be used year round, not just for emergencies.

Another example of resiliency, according to RMI, is improved energy efficiency. Making buildings more efficient lessens the electricity needed to keep them up and running during an emergency or outage.

This was the first principle espoused by RMI founder Amory Lovins beginning after the Arab oil embargoes of the 1970s. He founded RMI in the service territory of Holy Cross Energy, at Old Snowmass. RMI offices several years ago were moved to a state-of-the-art building in Basalt. It is very, very energy efficient.

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