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  • Dylan Anderson

Introducing “Brown Ranch — Explained”

Reporting series aims to layout various aspects of the Brown Ranch project and annexation agreement in effort to inform voters ahead of March 26 vote.

I have written dozens of stories about the Brown Ranch. Other than maybe COVID-19, the Brown Ranch is probably the single topic that I have written about the most in my time career as a journalist.

I was there the day YVHA closed on the Brown Ranch, have attended nearly all of the annexation committee meetings in person and have rewatched much of these conversations again after the fact. While at the Steamboat Pilot & Today, I pushed to ensure we were covering those annexation meetings, and I have continued to do that for The Yampa Valley Bugle.

You might ask why I am now writing even more about The Brown Ranch. To me that question has a simple answer.

Steamboat Springs will continue to change in the decades ahead and the March 26 Brown Ranch annexation vote — whether voters say “yes” or “no” — is a focal point in that future. Will voters approve a 2,262-unit development planned over 20 years or will they send YVHA back to the drawing board on the Brown Ranch?

My goal with this series is to explain the Brown Ranch Annexation Agreement at various levels of complexity. That means, whether you want the gist of it or if you want to dive deep into the weeds, you can find it here.

Today we start high level, but future stories will cover specific aspects of the agreement like water, traffic and affordability, among others. When diving into the agreement specifically, stories will present multiple versions, with each one including more and more detail.

This series also gives me a chance to reset a bit. Sometimes when I go back and read stories I have written, they are too inside baseball to me. I sometimes made assumptions about what the reader knows, making the story harder to understand for someone who may not be as caught up.

For the next several weeks, there will be a Friday edition of the Morning Bugle Newsletter that is part of this series of stories. After the third newsletter in two weeks, I’ll launch a dedicated page where you can find all of these stories at You will also be able to find them in the Steamboat Springs section.

I have been saving every question someone has emailed me in recent months and have started going back through public comment to get more questions there. If you have a question, Email it to me at and I will do my best to answer it as part of this series.


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