sibhusky - that's an interesting point and one I hadn't considered ("staying open at all")
Anyway, my $.02 is that any new area is a good thing, especially when it combines National Forest with private land. Say what you will, but any new area that hopes to thrive requires a real estate component in order to build the infrastructure (lifts, cafeteria, somewhere cozy with a fireplace) that 99% of skiers want. Especially in this part of the country where destination skiers are critical. In that regard, Bitterroot Resort seems to have all the tough issues solved. I'm sure a lot of folks will disagree with those statements and point at Silverton as the example that proves it otherwise. I'd point at Silverton as the example that proves it to be true. 80 skiers a day only counts as a viable operation if your base consists of school bus and yurt. (Don't count me wrong, I LOVE Silverton, but it's not for most people.)
Anyway, the general thoughts on this forum concerning Bitterroot Resort seem to be negative because:
1. MacClay has pissed off a lot of locals and now the Forest Service. He's not winning friends.
2. There's not enough snowfall on that mountain to make it sustainable.