It is interesting that I saw this thread this morning. My wife ad I were laughing about this last night. I was once a front ranger and am now an extreme west sloper, living at a Utah ski area. When I met my wife she was an instructor up in Breckinridge, and I was a front ranger. When I talk to this, I'm speaking in massive generalizations, so don't take it personal.
Front Rangers are people who moved to Colorado for the lifestyle, and have a job that allows them to be able to travel to the mountains and enjoy the opportunities offered.
Western Slopers fall into multiple categories:
1: High school partiers who moved to the mountains to live at a resort, and consider themselves very hard core. Typically very heavy into substance and seeking a rep job, which they will never get. While they use the Ski or Kayak in a fashion better than most, they present in a fashion which prohibits marketing departments wanting them as their front man. So, they end up working for mountain taxi, citimarket or another similar spot, and loving their life, but living a subsistence existence that makes it tough for them to have a family, exists in mainstream society, etc. I'm frankly envious of these guy's. They are confortable living in conditions that I no longer am willing to. Their biggest worry is who they'll meet at the bar that night.
2.) Parties who have lived on the western slope for their whole life and have stable jobs at banks, etc, and are great and open to front rangers. They recognize their existence is dependent on the tourism pouring their way.
3.) People who are going there for a year or two for fun, and then are getting back to it somewhere else.
I think the resentments that exists, exists everywhere. When I lived in Northern New Mexico we didn't like the Texans, In Wisconsin it's FIB's. When youre just getting by to live in a place, you validate your poverty by saying how stupid everyone else is who doesn't have what you have.
Either way, we all get along pretty well on the river.