The Ktunaxa First Nation have lost their initial court challenge to Jumbo Glacier Resort, B.C.'s first year-round ski resort planned for the Purcell Mountains west of Invermere.
The towering mountains and glaciers of Jumbo are sacred to the Ktunaxa, who have held huge rallies and blockades to try to prevent the resort from being built.
In B.C. Supreme Court Thursday, the Ktuanxa tried to argue they weren't properly consulted before Jumbo's proponents had their development agreement approved by the province.
But a judge shot that argument down. Ktunaxa leader Kathryn Teneese said she is still digesting the decision.
"We're very disappointed. Appeal is always an option, but obviously we want to wait and get advice from
our legal team with respect to the overall viability of an appeal."
"Obviously we are very disappointed and and we are still digesting the decision, and that will determine what we are going to do next."
The developers were not available for comment. Meanwhile, the resort is slowly being built, after more than two decades in the making.
The $1-billion development was first proposed — and cautiously endorsed by NDP Premier Mike Harcourt — in the early 1990s.
Once complete, it will feature up to 23 lifts, a 3,000-metre-high gondola and a ski village with more than 6,000 units.
The resort will be comparable in size to Silver Star in Vernon, B.C. — or about a tenth the size of Whistler Blackcomb.