FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Matthew Bandyk for SNL:The U.S. Supreme Court in 2016 already issued one decision that shook the energy industry, but another, more obscure case likely to be decided in the spring could also have widespread reverberations, this time for power projects — especially renewable energy.Various interest groups have lined up on either side of Hughes v. Talen Energy, both claiming that the wrong move by the court could inadvertently frustrate developers of wind and solar installations as they work to keep growing the nation’s renewable energy supply. Wind and solar have soared from providing less than 0.5% of the total electricity generated in the U.S. in 2005 to providing more than 5% in 2015 through November, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data.But a major developer of renewable projects says it already has been blocked from pursuing new solar projects by state policies like the one the Supreme Court must rule on in the Hughes case.The state of Maryland is asking the court to overturn a lower court’s ruling that struck down a Maryland plan to incentivize the building of a new natural gas-fired plant. Under the program, the developer that won a competitive bidding process had to agree to build a new plant and then bid all of the facility’s capacity into the PJM Interconnection LLC’s capacity market. However, the state’s local electric distribution companies had to sign contracts with the developer and pay a specific amount for that capacity over the length of the contracts regardless of the prices set by the PJM market. To that end, if the contract prices turn out to be higher than the market prices, the utilities would pay the difference to the developer, and vice versa if the market prices were higher than the contract prices.Unlike the Supreme Court’s decision earlier in 2016 concerning demand response, Hughes is a case that has largely flown under the radar, perhaps in part due to the technical complexity of the issue, which has left even Supreme Court justices scratching their heads.In Feb. 24 oral arguments, former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement tried to help out Justice Stephen Breyer, who freely admitted that he was confused about the complicated case. Clement was an attorney for the Talen side, arguing that Maryland’s scheme interfered with the price-setting process in competitive wholesale electricity markets and thus intruded on FERC’s jurisdiction.In trying to help Breyer understand what was so objectionable about this specific type of subsidy, Clement said the problem is that Maryland’s policy sends the message to electricity generators to stop competing “based on market forces and efficiency” and instead compete for “subsidies” and “guarantees.”Full article ($): US Supreme Court could alter path for renewables in 2016 Little-Publicized Supreme Court Case Around Fossil-Fuel Subsidies Will Affect Wind and Solar
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:Uzbekistan plans to more than double its power generating capacity over the next 10 years, with half of new capacity coming from solar plants and wind farms, the Central Asian nation’s government said on Monday.The former Soviet republic of 34 million aims to increase its capacity to 29.3 gigawatts (GW) from the current 12.9 GW, and rely less on natural gas, which dominates its power mix at present, it said in a strategic plan.Out of the added capacity, 5 GW is set to come from solar power plants and 3 GW from wind farms, the government said. Renewables will thus account for more than a quarter of the country’s capacity by 2030.Uzbekistan has already launched a handful of projects, including with Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power and United Arab Emirates’ Masdar, for the construction of solar and wind facilities with long-term power purchase agreements.It is also working with Russia’s Rosatom to build a nuclear power plant. Uzbekistan has large natural gas reserves, but aims to reduce its consumption in the power sector from 16.5 billion cubic metres to 12.1 billion cubic metres by 2030.[Mukhammadsharif Mamatkulov]More: Uzbekistan to double power generating capacity, go heavy on renewables Uzbekistan government moving forward with major renewable energy investment initiative
Data center in Nevada to host world’s largest customer-sited solar-plus-storage project FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greentech Media:A colossal Nevada data center will host the largest customer-sited solar-storage project in the world.Data center operator Switch plans to buy power for its record-breaking Citadel facility from an adjacent project developed and owned by Capital Dynamics. A 60-megawatt/240-megawatt-hour Tesla Megapack installation will turn 127 megawatts of solar capacity into a nearly 24/7 power source.This marks one entry in a broader effort by Switch founder and CEO Rob Roy to meet his company’s energy needs with clean-energy investment in its home base of Nevada. But while plenty of tech companies have purchased clean energy to account for their power consumption, and some have required clean energy produced in the regions where it is consumed, none have produced it at their own facilities at this scale.The largest behind-the-meter battery title previously went to Convergent Energy + Power for 10-megawatt systems to help industrial companies dodge demand charges in Ontario, Canada. The Switch battery, integrated by Con Edison’s commercial solutions arm, would be six times larger than Convergent’s systems when it comes online in a couple of years.“We see ourselves doing more,” said Benoit Allehaut, managing director for clean energy infrastructure at Capital Dynamics. But, he added, “We have to have scale, and it’s a custom job. The replicability is feasible, but with limitations.”Data centers have a generally flat demand profile, which influenced the choice to add a battery to the solar facility. The battery sizing turns the roughly 130 megawatts of solar capacity into 30 megawatts of “quasi-baseload” renewables, Allehaut said.[Julian Spector]More: World’s largest customer-sited solar-storage plant planned for Nevada desert
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renew Economy:A subsidiary of German electric utility RWE is to investigate the possibility of utilising vast salt caverns currently used for gas storage as potential large-scale organic flow batteries for electricity generated from renewable energy sources.RWE Gas Storage West, an RWE subsidiary and natural gas supplier, announced on Wednesday a collaboration with German large-scale storage developer CMBlu Energy AG to investigate the use of salt caverns as large-scale flow batteries. The company already operates and markets five underground natural gas storages which hold a total volume of 1.7 billion cubic metres of natural gas.However, these underground caverns could also be theoretically converted to store several gigawatt-hours of electricity from renewable sources by filling them with an organic electrolyte solution, which can then serve as the primary energy source. Organic flow batteries utilise the organic electrolyte solutions to store energy which can then be released through a chemical reaction in an electrochemical cell.The comparison behind RWE’s focus on such large-scale stationary storage sites is clear: Europe’s largest battery at the moment is a lithium-ion battery with just 50MWh of storage. And yes, over time and with increased development and cost reductions, the case for larger battery storage will improve. But considering that organic flow batteries can yield gigawatt-hours of storage capacity, these large-scale stationary storage solutions are a vital step towards greater renewable energy integration.“The future belongs to renewables,” said Andreas Frohwein, Technical Managing Director of RWE Gas Storage West. “In order to make optimal use of green electricity, we need large stationary electricity storage systems. At RWE, we are exploring different storage solutions. In the future, we may be able to use our salt caverns as batteries for storing enormous quantities of electricity. Using existing technical infrastructure, they could also be connected to the electricity grid quickly.”The planned generating capacity for their test system is 100kW with a storage capacity of up to 1,000kWh. The two companies expect this test phase to be completed by the first half of 2024.[Joshua S Hill]More: German utility RWE may use salt caverns as renewable flow batteries Germany’s RWE to study using existing underground gas storage sites for long-duration battery applications
Hike in Grayson Highlands State ParkThe weather is hot…head for some natural air conditioning high in the mountains. Grayson Highlands State Park offers some of Virginia’s highest elevation hiking to escape the heat.Here’s how to get out in the wilds of Grayson Highlands State Park! Fish “The Lady” Massanutten Shenandoah River Cleanup – June 23 Wanna go outside and play this weekend? Each week, the Game Plan brings you the best ways to enjoy the water, trails, and mountains in your Blue Ridge backyard. The Game Plan features three of the top upcoming weekend adventures in your neck of the woods, along with maps, stories, and insider insights. More weekend fun can be found here. Head to West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest and wet a line in the Elk River. The Elk holds the largest population of naturalized trout in the state, so the fishing can be challenging, but that’s the whole point isn’t it? Read how to get out on this river here! Yesterday was officially the first day of summer! Get the season started by participating in a volunteer activity like helping clean up the Shenandoah River with Massanutten Adventures. Find out how to participate in the river cleanup! View Game Plan North 6.21.2012 in a larger map
Week 2 is now over, which means here is week 3! For the next 5 weeks we will be giving away lift passes to Wintergreen Resort!Each week we will give away 2 weekday lift passes (valid Monday-Thursday) to one lucky individual, so 16 in total over 8 weeks.To sweeten the deal, we are also giving away a pair of Bolle Nova goggles (a $40 value) with the tickets!This contest is now closed, but week 4 of Wintergreen Lift Passes is live!Rules and Regulations: Package must be redeemed within 1 year of winning date. Entries must be received by mail or through the www.blueridgeoutdoors.com contest sign-up page by 12:00 noon EST on January 25th, 2013. One entry per person. One winner per household. Sweepstakes open only to legal residents of the 48 contiguous United States and the District of Columbia, who are 18 years of age or older. Void wherever prohibited by law. Families and employees of Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and participating sponsors are not eligible. No liability is assumed for lost, late, incomplete, inaccurate, non-delivered or misdirected mail, or misdirected e-mail, garbled, mistranscribed, faulty or incomplete telephone transmissions, for technical hardware or software failures of any kind, lost or unavailable network connection, or failed, incomplete or delayed computer transmission or any human error which may occur in the receipt of processing of the entries in this Sweepstakes. By entering the sweepstakes, entrants agree that Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and Wintergreen Resort reserve the right to contact entrants multiple times with special information and offers. Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine reserves the right, at their sole discretion, to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process and to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Sweepstakes. Winners agree that Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and participating sponsors, their subsidiaries, affiliates, agents and promotion agencies shall not be liable for injuries or losses of any kind resulting from acceptance of or use of prizes. No substitutions or redemption of cash, or transfer of prize permitted. Any taxes associated with winning any of the prizes detailed below will be paid by the winner. Winners agree to allow sponsors to use their name and pictures for purposes of promotion. Sponsors reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value. All Federal, State and local laws and regulations apply. Selection of winner will be chosen at random at the Blue Ridge Outdoors office on or before March 1st, 6:00 PM EST 2013. Winners will be contacted by the information they provided in the contest sign-up field and have 7 days to claim their prize before another winner will be picked. Odds of winning will be determined by the total number of eligible entries received.
He arrives at the final checkpoint just before 8 p.m. and swigs some Gatorade before heading off down the trail. Two miles to the finish, and he’s on record pace. He knows that if he can maintain for just a little bit longer, the record is his, and after fourteen hours in the woods, he’s ready to see that finish. Less than a half hour later, he’s there, having covered the 77-mile Cherokee Foothills Trail in 14 hours and 26 minutes, over two hours faster than the previous best.The finish line of this journey is different than those of the many races he’s run. There’s no tape to break, no cheering crowd, no trophies or medals. Instead, he unceremoniously hits the stop button on his watch, checks his time, grabs a soda and hops in the car to head home. Once there, he may text a running buddy or maybe put a post on Facebook about his newly established Fastest Known Time (FKT).Such was the scenario when my husband Mark Lundblad finished his record setting run on the Foothills Trail in upstate South Carolina. A bit anticlimactic, one might say. What would possess a person to put it on the line like that, to push him- or herself to the point of physical exhaustion, without the carrot of a race for motivation?The past decade has seen a proliferation of races across the Southeast. Runners can choose from traditional road races ranging from 5Ks to marathons, or they can opt for off-road adventures – short or long trail races, Spartan obstacle courses, and ultras lasting twenty-four hours or more. There’s something for everyone, it seems, so why do some individuals choose to create adventures of their own?“What drew me initially was the simplicity. It’s straightforward—here’s a trail with a start and finish point. It’s you and the trail—how quickly can you cover those miles?” says Matt Kirk, who holds a variety of speed records across the Southeast, including the Bartram Trail and the Benton-MacKaye Trail, as well as the unsupported Appalachian Trail record.Many trail runners who got into the sport for the peace and tranquility of running in the woods find popular trail races to be a bit too crowded for their taste. Increasingly high entry fees and races that fill quickly or utilize lottery systems are also deterrents for some would-be competitors. FKTs give runners a chance to test themselves under the most simple and pure of conditions, avoiding all of the hoopla of a traditional race.Mark Lundblad climbs the Mountains to Sea Trail on his record-setting Pitchell run. Photo: Western States 100So what, exactly, is an FKT? The acronym stands for Fastest Known Time, an unofficial course record of sorts. Technically, a speed record can be established for any trail or course that an individual wishes to designate. FKTs can be as varied and original as the people who attempt them, although they are typically run start-to-finish on an entire established trail, on established or otherwise “classic” routes, or on mountaineering routes such as summit ascents. Some of the most widely known FKTs are the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Crest Trail, Vermont’s Long Trail, and the Grand Canyon’s Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim. Not all of them are epic, multi-day affairs, however. Take Neil Gorman’s 20-mile circumnavigation of the Rivanna Trail in Charlottesville, Virginia, or his 7-mile Old Rag Loop. Both are reasonable distances that can be undertaken with minimal planning and logistics.Gorman has intentionally chosen FKTs that are on familiar routes close to home. For him, FKTs provide an opportunity to challenge himself without the stress of a race. “I can be more flexible…if I’m feeling good and the weather is good, I’ll decide to go for it.” This approach removes many of the unpredictable aspects of an organized race – weather, worries about how he’ll feel on a given day, or the pressure of having other people sharing the trail. Gorman views speed record attempts as training runs, not as “A” goals, and says that his aim is to “up the game a bit among local trail runners” by challenging others to best his times. On his blog, he notes “running the RT (Rivanna Trail) for an FKT is an exercise in self-enjoyment but to do so in an inspiring or popular manner might create energy, a buzz even, within the running community and one that might draw positive awareness to the RT itself.”Gorman has upped the ante for the Rivanna Trail FKT by offering an incentive to other runners. Following his record-setting run, he made a donation to the RT Foundation and pledged to make a similar donation in the name of whoever takes down his time. He would love to see this tradition continue, as a way of both supporting the trail and challenging others.Whereas Gorman favors sub-ultra distance FKTs that can be accomplished without a great deal of planning, the logistical challenges are part of what draws Kirk to the pursuit of speed records. His runs can last anywhere from twenty hours to twenty days (or, in the case of his unsupported A.T. record, 58 days, 9 hours and 38 minutes). While many FKTs are established with the help of a support crew who might provide anything from food and drink to encouragement and company on the lonelier sections of the trail, Kirk prefers to be self-reliant. He describes a solitary effort as “more pure”, explaining that there is an art form to moving efficiently through the woods completely solo. He also notes that he sometimes feels guilty for roping in friends and family members to assist in yet another adventure, so going at it alone reduces stress on both him and his loved ones.Another facet of FKTs that Kirk loves is the ability to explore natural areas that he might not otherwise get to experience, either because of their remote nature or due to regulations that would make a traditional trail race impossible. One of his favorites is the SCAR, or Smokies Challenge Adventure Run. This 72-mile run consists of a traverse of Great Smoky Mountains National Park via the Appalachian Trail. This run is particularly tough due to the inaccessibility of aid, as vehicular access is only possible at one point on the trail. This also means that once one sets off on this challenge, there are very few opportunities to bail. Kirk says that this forces him to step outside his comfort zone and become “intimately involved with the landscape”, which ultimately leads to growth as a person.I experienced this personal growth firsthand on my solo run on the Foothills Trail a couple of years ago. I began my run in the predawn hours during a spring storm system that brought thunderstorms and tornadoes to the region. Running those initial miles in the wet darkness terrified me. Thinking that I was destined to slide off the side of the mountain, never to be heard from again, I found myself questioning my toughness – and my sanity. Who was I to attempt such a thing, and why hadn’t I just stuck with the safety and predictability of an organized race? I missed the reassurance that comes with seeing the flagging that marks a race course and knowing that other runners are out there too. I discovered that solitude, which I had always considered peaceful, could also be terrifying. I became convinced that I just didn’t have what it took to complete that adventure and vowed to end the foolishness as soon as I saw my husband at our predetermined meeting place, ten miles up the trail.As you might imagine, once I reached our rendezvous spot, a new day was dawning. The sun was beginning to rise, and with it came a serious attitude adjustment. Although I knew that I still had a long way to travel, the psychological boost that was brought about by surviving those initial hours in the darkness gave me the confidence I needed to persevere. I still look back on that day, recalling the internal struggle that forced me to explore not only new wilderness territory but also an interior landscape that I never knew existed.Kirk says he has experienced many ups and downs on the trail. He notes that the initial miles of an FKT are sometimes the worst. Adventurers frequently begin their attempts in the early morning hours before sunrise, and heading out into the dark unknown, with miles or days ahead of you, can be daunting. Ordinary shadows take on scary shapes, and noises always sound more threatening in the night. For an explorer like Kirk, this uncertainty and apprehension is invigorating. He loves the unpredictability of an FKT, saying “supported organized races are like coloring books while self-supported adventure runs are blank canvases.”Mark Lundblad reaches the Mount Mitchell tower atop the East’s highest peak. Photo: ANNE LUNDBLADOne of the good – and bad – things about an FKT attempt is that you get to make your own rules. In essence, you are your own race director, choosing the location, the distance, the date and time of your adventure. If the day comes and you’re just not feeling it, or the weather is a washout, no worries – try again tomorrow, or next week. On the other hand, this lack of accountability can make it awfully tempting to bail when the going gets rough. Whereas most runners will go to great lengths to avoid a DNF in a traditional race, once you take away the entry fee and the spectators, it becomes much easier to succumb to the urge to quit. Kirk says that he has entertained thoughts of stopping at least once in every speed record he has attempted. “It’s a good opportunity to assess things,” he says, asking himself “how bad is it really?” While most of the time the pain and discomfort are temporary and can be pushed through, there have been times that he has opted to abort his attempt. After all, he says, “we do this for pleasure…and sometimes it isn’t really pleasurable.”If you feel ready to go out and attempt an FKT of your own, where do you begin?Peter Bakwin, who along with fellow Coloradan Buzz Burrell, was one of the pioneers of the FKT movement in the 1990’s, has established the go-to website for all things FKT. Here you can find listings of FKTs around the country and the globe, along with guidelines for establishing a speed record and general discussions about the topic.Burrell has proposed three basic guidelines for establishing an FKT:Announce your intentions in advance. Pay your respects to those who came before you, and tell them what you intend to attempt and when.Be an open book. Invite anyone to come and watch or, better yet, participate. This makes your effort more fun and any result more believable.Record your event. Write down everything immediately upon completion. Memory doesn’t count.Here in the Southeast, trail runner Jason Sullivan has established even more stringent criteria for verifying a finish (FKT or not) on the Foothills Trail in South Carolina. He requests that runners have witnesses to their attempt, that their support crew photograph them at various locations on the trail, and that they provide GPS data or at least split times to support their claims. Why the strict demands? Unfortunately as FKTs grow in popularity, the temptation for cheaters is present as well. What began as a pure and simple opportunity for an individual to test his or her speed, strength and endurance against the trail and the runners who preceded has in some cases turned into an ego-driven pursuit. Some blame this on the age of social media, in which even training runs end up tweeted or posted on Facebook. Sometimes it seems like a run isn’t even valued if it hasn’t been posted and commented upon, bringing to mind that age-old question about the sound made by a tree that falls in the forest.So why bother? Why deal with logistics and documentation and the unknown? Why not just pay the entry fee for a race and let someone else handle all of the details? Runners like Neil Gorman and Matt Kirk consider an FKT to be the best of both worlds — an opportunity to explore new terrain and experience the solitude that only a solo trail run can provide while challenging oneself against the ghosts of trail runners past and setting new standards for those who will follow. As I learned myself, FKTs provide mental and emotional challenges to accompany the physical. Kirk concludes that FKTs “are not for everybody. Less support means more opportunity for error and greater consequences. But (there are) also opportunities for memories that last a lifetime.”The South’s Epic FKTsCherokee Foothills TrailTable Rock State Park to Oconee State Park, S.C.According to Johnny Molloy, the Foothills Trail may be the most unsung, underused, and underrated long trail in the Southeast. It covers 77 miles, traversing the Cherokee Foothills of the Southern Appalachians in North and South Carolina, through state parks, national forests, and state-owned preserves. While aid is possible, there is no access through the 33 mile Laurel Valley section. FKT (male): 14:26 – Mark Lundblad; FKT (female): 20:47 – Anne LundbladSmokies Challenge Adventure RunGreat Smoky Mountains National Park, N.C./Tenn.This is a remote 70+ mile traverse of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park along the Appalachian Trail, starting at Fontana Dam and going to Davenport Gap. The total elevation gain is 18,660. On-course aid and bail-out is only possible at 40 miles at Newfound Gap Road. The trail is technical, and there are a lot of steep climbs and descents, all on singletrack. FKT (supported): 14:50 – David Worth; FKT (unsupported): 15:40 – Will HarlanRivanna TrailCharlottesville, VAA series of footpaths, trails, and greenways within the Rivanna River watershed that link up to create a 20-mile loop around the town of Charlottesville. This is a good route for an FKT newbie, as there are many places to access support, but the trade-off is losing the wilderness aspect. FKT: 2:09:47 – Neil GormanPitchellAsheville, N.C.This 67-mile trek is the brainchild of Asheville runner Adam Hill. It is run almost solely on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail from the top of Mount Pisgah to the summit of Mount Mitchell, the highest peak in the Eastern U.S. Over 16,000 feet of elevation gain and gnarly technical sections make this an epic run, but aid is available due to frequent Blue Ridge Parkway crossings. FKT: 13:28 – Mark LundbladGeorgia LoopNorth GeorgiaDescribed as “the toughest hike in Georgia” due to its rugged and remote nature, this loop is the triangle formed by the Benton MacKaye Trail, the Duncan Ridge Trail and the A.T. Not for the faint-hearted, it includes one of the most difficult stretches of the Benton Mackeye Trail, which National Geographic has named one of the world’s “epic trails.” FKT: 12:35 – Richard Schick
On Tuesday, Congressman Jason Chaffettz of Utah proposed two bills to the 115th Congress of the United States, both of which pose direct threats to public land on as many as ten western states.The first bill, H.R. 621, aims “to direct the Secretary of the Interior to sell certain Federal lands in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming, previously identified as suitable for disposal, and for other purposes.”Congressman Jason Chaffettz has introduced two bills to the 115th congress that are detrimental to public lands in the American West.The brazen language of H.R. 621 is pretty self explanatory. If enacted, the bill would authorize the sale of 3.3 million acres of public land—land managed by both the United States Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management—that Chaffettz and his cohorts in Congress deem “suitable for disposal.”Chaffettz didn’t stop there. He proposed another bill, H.R. 622, that seeks to revoke funding from the law enforcement arms of the Bureau of Land BLM and USFS—a move that would gut essential agenicies that are already in dire need of enhanced federal assistance.According to the USFS, law enforcement personnel are “an integral part of the overall management of the National Forest System that ensure prevention, investigation, enforcement, and program management requirements are fully integrated into all National Forest System resource management programs.”They play a critical role in things like poaching prevention and land use regulation.Proponents of the plan say that this responsibility will be assumed by local sheriffs, but conservation advocates like Backcountry Hunters and Anglers and the Theodore Roosevelt Convervation Partnership mantiain that, if USFS and BLM law enforcement funding is depleted, large swaths of our Forest Service and BLM land will be transformed into unmanaged quagmires.Anti-public lands advocates are currently directing their fight at lands west of the Mississippi, but every victory leaves them more emboldened, and there’s no reason to believe they won’t put the East in their crosshairs if they find success in their current endeavor.To contact your representatives dial the capital switchboard at (202)224-3121. You can also contact Rep. Chaffettz directly here or call his office at (801) 851-2500.
Some things you need to hear again and again. Others, just once. Especially when it comes straight from The Mountain. So start stockpiling those “sick” days. Load your power song.And be forever ready at the drop of a hat. The Mountain is calling. Who’s with us?Once the powder is piling up, there is only one thing left to do. Mountain Rule #4 offers a solution to an all-too-common conundrum. Just don’t let your boss see this!TERRAIN FOR EVERY ABILITYOur three distinct areas have personalities all their own. Snowshoe Basin is the largest and offers something for everyone. Silver Creek boasts glades, the progressive terrain parks and, of course, our famous night skiing. Lastly, the Western Territory is home to Snowshoe’s most challenging runs.Explore the MountainFAMILY-FRIENDLY OPTIONS APLENTYKids, bring your parents. They’ll love stuff like hitting the tubing hill together, Snowshoe’s legendary lessons program, SNOWTRACKS and our season-long rentals option. And just for you kids, things like our totally wired 20 Below teen center and kids night out will keep you coming back for more.Find Your FunSNOW MACHINE TOURS, HUT DINNING & ESCAPE ROOMDid someone say horsepower? Our snowmobile, Polaris RZR and Ace tours let you experience Snowshoe’s backcountry from an exhilarating new perspective. We even offer a nighttime tour out to our Sunrise Backcountry Hut where you’ll enjoy a decadent 4-course meal. Hungry for mystery? The Cabin in the Woods escape room serves up riddles, mystery and Mountain folklore for our most daring guests.Hit The GasTo check out some other rules that may help you this winter, head here.
The trout bum in your life could be one of the most difficult people to shop for simply because of the technical knowledge needed to wade through the array of fly fishing equipment available on the market today.Are those waders you’re eyeing breathable enough? Do you go with the stockingfoot or bootfoot options? Should you choose a reel made from machined bar-stock aluminum or the less expensive composite version? What size rod is right? The go-to five weight or the stouter seven weight options?All of these questions and more can make the process of shopping for the fly fisher in your life seem a bit overwhelming. Luckily, we’re here to help with these 7 go-to gifts that any angler would be thrilled to find under the tree.1. Redington i.D. reel, starts at $89.99The venerable rod and reel maker Redington is out with a brand new reel just in time for the holidays. Not only does the i.D. sport the type of high quality cast aluminum construction that Redington is know for, it boasts a smooth rulon disc drag, a large arbor, and a comfortable handle—all accessible at a price point that won’t break the bank. If you’re not sold yet, the i.D. features a flat back surface to accept custom decals representing anything from your home state to your favorite fish species, and the decals are simple to remove, stack, or swap to update your reel’s look over time.2. Orvis Helios 3 Rod, starts at $849This revolutionary new line of rods from Orvis takes casting accuracy to a whole new level. It comes in two lines, the 3D and 3F, both of which come in 9 foot 5 and 8 weight models. The former offers anglers all the power they need to make long distance casts on big water without sacrificing accuracy, while the latter is designed with accuracy and finesse in mind.3. YETI Panga, starts at $300The Panga is YETI’s first foray into the world of waterproof gear storage, and it’s quickly becoming a staple on drift boats, dories and rafts around the country. This fully submersible duffle acts as a gear fortress, allowing absolutely no access points for rogue wetness and a laminated, high-density nylon shell that is virtually impenetrable to nature’s assaults. If you’re worried about hauling a high quality digital camera around on the river, worry no more. This is the perfect way to ensure pro quality photos of your latest lunker.4. Simms G3 Guide Stockingfoot WadersWhen it comes to durability in the face of the elements, the Simms G3 Guide Stockingfoot Waders are proudly standing atop the heap. If wintertime fly fishing is your thing, the G3’s have you covered with five layers of GORE-TEX lining. Add to this the convenience of a reach-through warming pocket with stormflaps and micro-fleece lining and an intuitive zippered chest pocket design, with integrated utility tabs that house an arsenal of in-river essentials, and you’e got some of the best waders on the market today.5. Rio-Fishpond Headgate Tippet Holder, $39.99Stop fumbling around in your chest pack for one of those ten spools of tippet you jammed into a pocket you can never seem to find. The Rio-Fishpond Headgate Tippet Holder keeps all those spools organized and easily accessible, and once you’ve used one you’ll never be caught on the river without it.6. Smith Guide’s Choice, $249Nothing enhances a day on the water like a good pair of polarized sunglasses, and we’ve yet to find a better pair for fly fishing in Southern Appalachian than Smith’s Guides Choice. The lenses are the business end of these glasses, featuring the new Techlite Polarchromic polarized tech that greatly enhances color and cuts through any body of water that a fish might call home. Stainless steel spring hinges allow for maximum flexibility.7. Soft Science Terrafin Wading Boot, $90With the Terrafin Wading BootSoft Science has built what they’re calling the ultimate wading boot built for fly fishing, and that’s not far from the truth. This lightweight, slip-resistant shoe shines on the type of moss-covered rocks and stream beds you’ll find all over Southern Appalachia.8. Filson Fishing Waist Pack, $125.00 The venerable Filson brand has been around since 1897, a fact that is readily apparent in the high quality nature of their products. The Filson Fishing Waist Pack is a lightweight, water-repellent waist pack with divided storage, cotton webbing for zingers and a sheepskin shearling patch for flies. The waist strap extends to 48″ with rustproof, easy-buckle closure, and built in grommets on the the bottom allow for optimal drainage.