Craig O. Burt was the majority owner and CEO of the C.E. and F.O. Burt Company and Burt Forests, Inc., located in Stowe, Vermont. He was also a major landowner, forester, and early proponent of skiing in Stowe. He developed Ranch Camp,helped to form the Mount Mansfield Ski Club, which included the first ski patrol in the US, organized Stowe’s first Winter Carnivals (which continue today) and, in 1934, successfully formed the plan for a Stowe-Mansfield Association, which was the precursor of the Stowe Area Association.
In the winter of 1918, Burt and other Stowe businessmen were looking for ways to revitalize the nearly dormant winter economy of Stowe. They started a Winter Carnival that included ski jumping and numerous other activities and events. In the 1930s, Burt and his sons fixed up a primitive lumber camp tucked behind Mt. Mansfield in the Ranch Valley, and began welcoming skiers from near and far. For several years, Ranch Camp as it became known, was the center of skiing activity in Stowe. He was one of the first to see the economic benefits skiing could bring to Vermont. He also had a native Vermonter's appreciation for the wild beauty of the Ranch Valley and that of the Lamoille Valley.
Radio Announcer Lowell Thomas, who did much to popularize skiing in the 1930s and 40s, called Craig Burt "The Maharajah of Stowe." It was a nickname that always embarrassed the otherwise modest Burt. His greatest gift to Vermont came after his death when some 10,000 acres of land was sold to the Nature Conservancy--area that is now preserved for all to enjoy.