The Blakes, longtime owners of Taos Ski Valley, one of the best steep skiing destinations in North America, have announced the sale of the ski area to conservationist Louis Bacon. Bacon has had property in Taos since 1996, and has supported organizations such as the Colorado Coalition of Land Trusts, Rio Grande Headwaters Land Trust, and the Taos Land Trust, among other conservational endeavors. The Blakes will continue to serve on the Board of Directors for Taos Ski Valley. Freeskier wishes continued success to Taos Ski Valley, as they move forward in this transition.
Press Release, Taos, New Mexico, December 11, 2013:
Mickey Blake, chief executive officer of Taos Ski Valley and son of legendary ski pioneers Ernie and Rhoda Blake, announced today that the family-held corporation has entered into an agreement with conservationist Louis Bacon who will purchase the resort.
Blake stated, “Louis and his team have been true partners for many years and have played collaborative roles in the vision our family has for the ski valley, the base area redevelopment and the on-mountain improvements. Based on our relationship and his track record for conservation, our family approached Louis about purchasing Taos Ski Valley. We believe Louis is the right person to ensure a viable future for the ski valley and that his ownership will be beneficial to our employees, Taos’ residents and guests. We are pleased he was interested in our proposal and we look forward to working together on the transition.”
Both Blake and Bacon anticipate, and are committed to, a smooth and seamless transition for all existing employees, operations and especially for the skiing public. Bacon has owned property in Taos Ski Valley since 1996 and his team collaborated with the Blake Family for several years on the Village Master Plan, which was unanimously approved last spring by the Village of Taos Ski Valley.
“It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of this iconic ski area with its expansive mountain and the first-class team of professionals,“ said
Bacon spokesperson, Peter Talty. “Our mandate is clear and we are dedicated to advancing the Blake family vision and legacy of Taos Ski Valley, by continuing to provide an unmatched skiing experience while serving as an economic driver for northern New Mexico. Louis is honored that Mickey and his family approached him to be part of this tradition.”
Louis Bacon is the owner of Trinchera Ranch in Costilla County and Tercio Ranch in Las Animas County, Colorado. In 2012 Bacon reached an agreement with Colorado Open Lands to place Tercio Ranch into a perpetual conservation easement that followed his early work with U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) to place Trinchera Ranch under the largest conservation easement donation ever received by FWS as well as the largest in Colorado. His long-term commitment to southern Colorado and northern New Mexico has shaped his understanding of the region. Bacon is a recognized conservation philanthropist through his Moore Charitable Foundation, and in the region, the Trinchera Blanca foundation. Some of his conservation work includes supporting organizations like the Colorado Coalition of Land Trusts, Rio Grande Headwaters Land Trust and the Taos Land Trust.
The Blake family will retain a seat on the Board of Directors for Taos Ski Valley and all staff will continue in their current positions. Chief Operating Officer Gordon Briner, who will take over as CEO stated, “We owe so much to the Blake family and their enduring legacy that has made Taos Ski Valley what it is today. I look forward to continuing to work closely with Mr. Bacon and his team and advancing the vision of Ernie, Mickey and the rest of the Blake family into the future.”
The transaction will be completed pending shareholder approval.