Well-Known Private Colorado Angling Club Files for Bankruptcy

Donny Beaver, the managing member of Vail Anglers LLC (made up of the Alpine River Club, Alpine River Outfitters, and Piney Valley Ranch Sporting Clays), just released information confirming a report we heard earlier this week that Vail Anglers had filed for bankruptcy on September 16. Creditors begin receiving notices shortly after that date requesting relief from debts.

In the release, Beaver explains the reason for the bankruptcy filing:

“When we first opened Alpine River Club in March 2007, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 12,110 and climbing toward 14,000+. The original strategy was to buy Gorsuch Outfitters in Edwards, CO and use this flyfishing retail and public guide services as a gateway to recruit new members for Alpine River Club. Initially, this strategy worked well enough in the Vail Valley in 2007 that we decided to expand the concept to Steamboat and recruit members through a strategic relationship with an outfitter. However, as the stock market tumbled, both the outfitting and club businesses in Colorado took serious hits.

Unfortunately, 2011 brought new, unprecedented challenges. Record snowfall and snow pack in the mountains surrounding Vail & Steamboat created summer flooding conditions well into August, ruining the majority of the prime flyfishing season and creating unfishable conditions on several of the club’s major fishing leases. Due to these conditions, new member recruitment has still not revived yet.”

Beaver is also an owner of the Spring Ridge Club in central Pennsylvania, but says the Vail Anglers bankruptcy will have little impact on those members: “Members should experience very minimal negative impact, if any. In fact, both organizations will be stronger once Vail Anglers rejects its unprofitable agreements that have been causing major financial strain. If all goes as planned, we hope to re-emerge from bankruptcy in six to nine months.”

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