A $100,000 reward is on offer for information leading to the location, arrest and conviction of the suspects responsible for setting fire to the chair lift control hut at Kimberley Alpine Resort (KAR).
The fire was lit at around 3 a.m. on December 18, 2021, and burned down the operator’s hut at the top of the Northstar Quad.
“The RCMP and the Kimberley Fire Department responded immediately to the fire and have been actively investigating it since then. On January 10th the RCMP released a statement saying that they believe the fire was arson and was deliberately set,” said officials with the Resorts of the Canadian Rockies (RCR). “KAR/RCR appreciates the RCMP’s efforts in this investigation and are assisting and supporting them in any way we can, including offering this $100,000 reward.”
RCR staff said itself, KAR and Kimberley RCMP are seeking help from the public in identifying those responsible.
“This is a horrible situation, we just want justice to be done,” said Matt Mosteller, Resorts of the Canadian Rockies spokesperson. “This can be construed as nothing less than an outright attack on our community because here, winter sports like skiing are a major outlet to get outside.”
Mosteller said the loss of the chair lift has been felt throughout the community.
“It has affected everybody, especially all the small businesses who depend on the visitor economy,” said Mosteller. “This act of crime has been devastating at so many levels, both socially and economically.”
A plan to rebuild the Northstar Quad ski lift is underway, and according to Mosteller, it will be a rather costly endeavour.
“This rebuild will be a multi-million dollar construction project. We’ve had the lift manufacturer already here in town to assess the situation, working closely with the team at Kimberley Alpine Resort,” said Mosteller. “We’re outlining a schedule for that rebuild. Our intention is to have it operational for next winter.”
Those with details on the incident can call the Kimberley RCMP detachment at 250-427-4811, or callers can remain anonymous by calling Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).