With the first snow of the year, we got a sneak peak at what Monarch Ridge will look like across the highway from the ski area. The plan is to continue thinning dead spruce trees along the ridge to the north until they reached the private mining claims down near the Madonna Mine. As time and conditions permit, the USFS also plans to thin the lower half of the ridge down below the road that runs mid-slope. This would basically thin this area from top to bottom. Looks like it will be a nice backcountry addition to the pass.