Thursday, January 31, 2008
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
The jacket comes as an empty shell, a semi-transparent white nylon piece with its insulating areas open and free. Stuff with whatever insulating items the wearer desires. Just zip open the long pockets and stuff in crumpled newspaper, dead leaves, Styrofoam packing peanuts, lead shot or whatever else. The model above appears to be stuffed with plastic newspaper bags, which could make it an ideal coat for responsible winter dog walking.
Available: Fall 2008; will come in a men’s and women’s version
The other two men in the group are recovering at a Glenwood Springs hospital this morning after a National Guard helicopter spotted their campfire last night.
Craig Morris, of Florida, and Murry Melloni of Littleton told rescuers that John McKibben of Kremmling died sometime Monday night.
Crews are planning to resume a search this morning to find McKibben's body.
The three men failed to return Sunday night from a planned one-day trip. Rescuers says cell-phone text messages the men sent helped find them.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
The colder weather may mean the sculptures at the International Snow Sculpture Championships in Breckenridge last through the weekend. I drove up Saturday with my mom to check them out. Un-freaking-believable.
These guys are about 10-12 feet tall, and just as wide/deep. The detail is unreal.
It was crowded, but worth finding a parking place (the toughest part of the day) and walking around. A great apres ski activity, or a reason for a nonskier to make the trip with you.
You can see photos of the sculpting process here.
DENVER (AP) — Colorado lawmakers voted to tighten the rules for off-road vehicles Tuesday despite objections that the state is taking away access to federal lands.
“This is not a privilege, this is a right to use your land, and it’s being turned into a privilege,” said Rep. Ray Rose, R-Montrose.
The measure (House Bill 1069) would prohibit motor vehicles from using public lands, trails, or roads unless it’s authorized by a sign or other means. A violation would be a misdemeanor with a $100 fine. People who violate the law while hunting, fishing, trapping would also have 10 suspension points applied to their licenses.
Violations in designated wilderness areas would carry a $200 fine and 15 license suspension points.
The bill passed on a voice vote and faces a third reading and a recorded vote before it goes to the Senate.
My wife's continuing quest to ski every lift-served ski area in the state took us to Sol Vista on Sunday (Powderhorn and Howelson Hill yet to go) . Skiing was free, thanks to the GEMS card, and worth every penny.
Seriously, I'm not knocking beginner areas. I've run into Texans at Ski Cooper who come up and ski there because, hey, if you only ski once a year and aren't going to do anything tougher than an easy blue, why pay $75 for a lift ticket?
But I'm a little confused why anyone would buy a house or a condo next to Sol Vista. Even if you have young kids, they're going to outgrow the area in a couple years. Sure, your house would still be close to Winter Park/Mary Jane, but living next to any ski hill is probably a lot more expensive than just buying a place in Granby (Civic motto: "Let our giant, armored bulldozers bring the Granby spirit right to your door. Heck, through your door!").
We did three runs, one labeled black, one blue and one green. You can downgrade each of those one category if you're comparing them to a normal ski area. I'm not sure what green downgrades to, though - lime? Sea mist?
Liberace has a shrine. Jimi Hendrix has a shrine. But no Neil Diamond? What's going on?
On Monday, also, there was an odd cloud over the mountains. I was riding my bike downtown at about 10 a.m. and a bank of clouds, as dark as a summer thunder storm but without any hard edges rose over the mountains, swept into the city, and pelted me with a few large, wet pieces of grappel. I went into the bank to cash a check, but the time I got out, the bank of clouds had already swooped east, and the sky was blue.
Monday, January 28, 2008
The bicycle news Website said she dropped out in the first lap, and that "Compton has been suffering from a recurring muscle ailment that has kept her off her bike for the past two weeks and has left her with a noticeable limp at times. Before the race on Sunday, Compton said she planned "to start and then see how I feel, but right now, I'm not too sure."
Friday, January 25, 2008
Is www.gazette.com/outthere. Where else can you find free maps, descriptions and photos for over almost 100 local trails? We have popular classics such as Waldo Canyon and Barr Trail, and more obscure gems, such as the long way up Mount Rosa, and little-climbed Mays Peak. Check it out.
Problem is, there is no easy way to collect a toll, and no conceivable way to accurately and efficiently award non-peak driver.
Maybe they should stick with the idea of the monorail.
The International Snow Sculpture Championship in Breckenridge
Winter X Games 12 at Buttermilk in Aspen
Mary Jane's Birthday Bash and Winterfest at Winter Park
14th annual Country in the Rockies at Steamboat Springs
Gretchen Bleiler is wowing the crowds at the X Games at Buttermilk in Aspen. Read Gazette reporter Brian Gomez's report here. The games continue through Sunday. Pack the car and go. You'll see some of the best riding in the world.
Hunting is allowed in Colorado. But you can't hunt on the grounds of the monument and you can't hunt in the city. C'mon.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
"In each case, the deer where shot with archery equipment," said District Wildlife Manager Steve Cooley.
I've often thought it would be cool to hunt and eat an urban deer, but it sounds like someone is making pot shots that just injure the animals. Not as cool.
Anyone who may have seen any suspicious activity, or has information about this case, is asked to contact the DOW at (719) 227-5282. Or, they can call Operation Game Thief toll-free at 1-877-265-6648.
Which leads to the real question. If there is a state ski license plate, would you pay extra for it?
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
He'll be talking about the ski doc "Steep," which I wrote about last week (and will have a review of on Friday in Go - I give it a B+, if I recall correctly).
McLean sort of serves as the film's voice of reason, after the death of Doug Coombs and the ever-greater extremes extreme skiers go to. It's a little ironic, given that, that the film's most harrowing scene captures McLean and his party being caught in an avalanche in Iceland. It's seriously intense - you've never seen anything like this on film before.
I talked to McLean for a few minutes after the film's premiere at Telluride. He was pretty positive about the film, having a record of extreme skiing's history and honoring its pioneers. He said his mom was always wondering what exactly it is that he does and, with this, he could just show her the movie.
Can't imagine what he and Stephen Colbert will have to talk about, but I'll be watching.
Did you catch this story in The Gazette over the weekend by R. Scott Rappold? It's got our commenters hopping.
In a nutshell:
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to let a Canadian energy company drill for natural gas in the Baca National Wildlife Refuge, which is in the San Luis Valley, within 2 miles of Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve.
Environmental groups are worried about the impact on wildlife, air and water quality, and the nearby national park, but federal officials say their hands are tied.
Toronto-based Lexam Energy Exploration owns mineral rights and wants to drill 2 test wells, which would involve bulldozing and clearing 14.5 acres.
Again, you can read Scott's story here.
He'll update the story in this Sunday's Gazette.
You can read the environmental assessment here.
The Fish and Wildlife Service is accepting comments through March 2, which may be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org or to San Luis Valley National Wildlife Refuge Complex, 9383 El Rancho Lane, Alamosa, CO 81101.
Monday, January 21, 2008
A Canadian man survived 96 hours pinned under his all-terrain vehicle in the Rocky Mountains by eating rotting animal carcasses, drinking melted snow and thinking of his grandchildren, he said today.
Ken Hildebrand was trapped face down for 4 days and 3 nights in the Crowsnest Pass area of southwestern Alberta, where he tried numerous ways to free himself in below-freezing temperatures.
Throughout the ordeal, he kept wolves and coyotes away by blowing on an emergency whistle.
He was rescued from the wreck by hikers, and has spent a week in a hospital.
He said he was checking animal traps Jan. 8 in an area where ranchers had complained of wolves preying on livestock. The vehicle hit a rock, throwing him off and settling on his legs.
He tried for hours to pry the ATV off, but his awkward position made that impossible.
He stayed alive by eating the animals he had collected, although the rotting flesh made him sick, the Calgary Sun newspaper reported.
Denver news stations and newspapers say James McLean, a podiatrist from Leawood, Kansas, died after landing on his head just before 2 p.m. He was wearing a helmet. The coroner said he died of a fractured neck.
Here's an UPDATE to this post. McLean was starting a career in physical medicine and rehabilitation, not podiatry, as previously noted.
Peace be with James and his family and friends. Man, you just never know when it will happen.
Friday, January 18, 2008
Here's some more images and vid:
Here's video from a small American race that gives you an idea of the courses.
Here's video from last year's World Cup Championships in Belgium.
Thursday, January 17, 2008
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Achance encounter with a plastic bottle early Tuesday helped two lost climbers find their way off the lower flanks of Mount Hood after a night spent huddled in a hastily built snow cave.
The bottle, apparently left by someone playing an adventure game, held map coordinates giving their precise location. And the two Portland men spotted it just as searchers called their cell phones -- which they mistakenly believed had stopped working for good the night before.Read more here.
My bet: ain't gonna happen. I've written about a snowless terrain park set to open in Castle Rock, or a ski resort in Texas. We note how they have plans, investors, and proposed opening dates. Then nothing happens. To this day there is no artificial snow park in the United States.
Nick Stevens, 23, survived, stumbled down the mountain and called authorities when he got cell-phone reception shortly before 9 a.m. Friday.
Authorities searched with ground crews and helicopters but called off the search Saturday due to the increasingly dangerous weather conditions and the presumption that Lygon Stevens had died.Lygon Stevens and her brother scaled several mountain peaks including the tallest in North America, Mount McKinley in Alaska.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
They're down and safe now, after spending a night in a snow cave.
Justin Votos, 27, and Matthew Pitts, 28, said they'd summited twice before, and thought they had a good climbing window but got caught in whiteout conditions at about 10,000 feet.
They started hiking down toward Timberline Lodge, but missed it and said they built the cave at about 5,000 feet.
Walking down today they found a geocache with GPS gear that allowed them to report their location to rescuers via cell phone. They were near Enid Lake and less than a mile from U.S. 26.
Great news for those two, and a reminder to the rest of us to be prepared for the worst.
Monday, January 14, 2008
Hiked in Red Rock Canyon on Saturday with my mom, who's visiting from the San Diego area. She falls more deeply in love with the park every visit.
A LOT of unleashed dogs running around. All of them friendly to us, but that's not the point. More than one eager pup jumped up, which could have been a problem if we'd been standing on an icy section of trail.
Another 3 people were killed in Wyoming, bringing to 21 the number of people killed in avalances in the West since Nov. 12. The national annual average for avalanche deaths is about 25.
35 people were killed nationwide in avalanches in the 2001-02 season, the most on record, according to the U.S. Forest Service.
Before heading into the backcountry, experts advise you recognize the signs of avalanche danger and take a course -- or courses -- in avalanche survival. You can get regular updates on general danger at the Colorado Avalance Information Center. If you go to the Web site now, you'll see a good portion of our mountains are posted as "considerable" danger to avalanches.
You can look up classes at the site, too.
The Wyoming victims were snownmobilers. The Coloradan was a skier. Skiers also are said to have triggered 3 avalanches Saturday on Loveland Pass.
And 2 skiers were caught in but survived a slide Sunday near Cache Peak in the Gros Ventre Wildnerness in Wyoming. One suffered a broken leg.
Here's a weekend ski report from Out There friend and Biz editor Joanna Bean:
I skiied Winter Park/Mary Jane on Sunday after a years-long hiatus (too long of a day trip for me from Colorado Springs). I'd heard and read about some of the changes there, particularly the condo development around the base.
I was pleasantly surprised that Winter Park still "feels" like it used to, for the most part.
I didn't ski Jane as much as I would have liked (had the kids with me) but we found plenty to keep us busy at Winter Park. (And I snuck in a few trips through the bumps on Retta's Run and Outrigger.)
If you're an intermediate skier, head over to the Pioneer Express lift, on the Vasquez Ridge of Winter Park. We found plenty of powder and no crowds. Views were great, too.
Also new this year off Jane's Parsenn Bowl is what they're calling North America's highest six-person chairlift, along with new glade terrain. That's high on my list for my next no-kids ski day.
We skied until 2:30, didn't have a bad run and were back in the Springs four hours later.