DRAPER — A paragliding company and outdoor enthusiasts are petitioning to stop further excavation at Point of the Mountain.
Paragliders come from across the nation to fly there, but an instructor at Draper-based company Cloud 9 Toys said the mountain's future is in jeopardy because of mining.
Cloud 9 offers daily paragliding flights and lessons from the flight park at Point of the Mountain. It is the largest of company of its kind in the nation.
Geneva Rock owns the permits to excavate and mine up to the flight park. The company employs more than 1,000 people and produces concrete and asphalt materials for UDOT's large projects in the state.
Cloud 9 instructor Justin White said a petition at savesteepmountain.org aims to stop Geneva Rock from mining further up the mountain.
"Ultimately that would destroy the site for flying," White said. "Obviously the skyline, the look and everything - you would just see a thumb sore in the middle of the valley instead of a beautiful mountain."
He said excavation of the mountain ridge could negatively alter the wind currents by changing the face of the formation.
"The winds would go around the mountain instead of over. The winds would never be good to fly there," he explained.
But a Geneva Rock spokesman, David Przybyla, told the Draper Valley Journal that for years, its mining operations have not impacted local recreation.
He said the company may be open to a compromise, but continued excavation is important to the work underway. "The extending ridge of the mountain is where the best materials are," he said. White said his group would love government officials to buy the land or swap land with Geneva Rock, in a deal that would be mutually beneficial.