Today's Steamboat Pilot reports that Frontier Airlines is close to announcing a new year round service to Steamboat's Yampa Valley Regional Airport.
The proposed aircraft - the Bombardier Q400 - is just a newer, bigger Dash 8. Qantas fly them extensively on regional routes, which in their monopolistic minds includes services between Sydney, Australia's largest city, and Canberra, the national capital. One of the five daily services between Canberra and Brisbane is also on the Q400 (the other four are on 737's). I usually avoid that flight like the plague but I was forced to take it once back in June. I'd love to get my hands on the bright spark who decided it would be a good idea to use a turboprop on a 2.5 hour trip.
Nevertheless, the nice thing about this announcement is that it is going to be a year round service meaning there will finally be an off-season alternative to United. As if to remind me why this would be a good thing, United managed to mess up my trip home last week. Due to mechanical trouble out of San Francisco I missed my connection in Denver, only by a few minutes but that meant waiting six hours for the next flight (assuming I could even get a seat). I chose to take the Alpine Taxi service instead since that got me home several hours earlier. Here's an earlier post on United's Express service to Steamboat.