October 14, 2013

    Photo: Andrew Parnell/Wikimedia

A-Basin Opens Early This Season

Colorado ski season begins

Arapahoe Basin, in north-central Colorado, became the first ski area in the country to open for the 2013-14 season on Sunday, four days earlier than last year. 

Favorable weather conditions—cold nighttime temperatures and ideal humidity—allowed the resort to begin making snow on September 27. A-Basin either made or received natural snow during the days that followed, and by this weekend, an 18-inch base covered parts of the mountain. 

"People are so excited," A-Basin marketing director Leigh Hierholzer told the Denver Post. "We're honored to be the first in the state to get the season started."

The 960-acre resort typically receives 350 inches of snow annually.

You can find a complete list of opening days at Colorado Ski Country USA.


Jamaica's Bolt at London Games     Photo: Nick J Webb/Flickr

Jamaican Team Faces Drug Probe

Alleged lack of testing before 2012 Olympics

The World Anti-Doping Agency is launching a substantial audit of Jamaica's drug testing agency following reports that Jamaica's testing all but disappeared before the 2012 Olympics. The Associated Press reports that WADA's probe indicates a serious breakdown of the Jamaican agency's testing from January 2012 until the July games.

"There was a period of — and forgive me if I don't have the number of months right — but maybe five to six months during the beginning part of 2012 where there was no effective operation," WADA Director General David Howman said in an interview, according to the Huffington Post. "No testing. There might have been one or two, but there was no testing. So we were worried about it, obviously."

The former executive director of Jamaica's Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO), Renee Anne Shirley, initially raised the allegations in the Caribbean's oldest newspaper. Current JADCO chairman addressed Shirley's claims: "Ms. Shirley has done this country and herself a great deal of harm by saying things that are not totally in keeping with the truth."

However, Jamaicans did not enter the Olympic games entirely untested. The IAAF, track and field's governing body, says they tested Jamaican athletes regularly and Bolt was tested more than 12 times last year. Usain Bolt has never failed a drug test.

WADA plans to send a team to Jamaica to further investigate the alleged testing breakdown at the end of this year or in early 2014.

At the London games, Jamaica won 8 of 12 individual sprint medals, and Usain Bolt became the first man to win both the 100- and 200-meter races at consecutive games.


Researchers at Harvard Medical School at the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency have found illegal substances in the pre-workout supplement Craze.     Photo: Rudolf Vlček/Flickr

Illegal Amphetamines Found in Workout Supplements

Meth-like substance in Craze and Detonate

An analysis published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Drug Testing and Analysis today has detected a highly addictive, illegal stimulant chemical in the pre-workout supplements Craze, from New York-based Driven Sports, and Detonate, a weight loss pill from Gaspari Nutrition.

The chemical has a similar structure to methamphetamine, Pieter Cohen, an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School and analysis co-author, told USA Today. This isn't the first time illegal substances have been found in Craze. In June 2012, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) found several prohibited stimulants in the product, including amphetamines and similar compounds

USADA listed craze as a "High Risk Dietary Supplement," and many retailers, including Walmart.com and Bodybuilding.com took the product off their online storefronts. Driven Sports and Gaspari Nutrition have yet to comment on the latest findings.


    Photo: mady70/Shutterstock

20,000 Bees Removed from Woman's Home

"They didn't bother me"

A beekeeper removed 20,000 bees from a 98-year-old woman's home in Florida Saturday after they built a hive in the attic of her home.

"They didn't bother me," said Cocoa Beach resident Sevia Moore, whose daughter had to show her the hive nestled in an awning inside her house. "When I was outside, I didn't even see any."

Beekeeper Leo Cross used a vacuum to collect the bees and move them to a more appropriate location. He preserved the honey comb and hive, telling WESH TV that it is important for the bees to "go on to reproduce" since the bee population is struggling.


Mendocino National Forest     Photo: El Caganer/Flickr

Lost Hunter Survives 19 Days in California Forest

Eats squirrels and algae for food

On Saturday, a lost deer hunter was rescued after nineteen days in a northern California. Gene Penaflor, 72, was first reported missing on September 24 when he failed to meet up with his hunting partner for lunch in the Mendocino National Forest. ABC News reports that the two hunters had split up in the morning and that Penaflor had slipped and struck his head. He later told detectives that he woke up disoriented and decided to stay put, unsure of where he was.

The Mendocino County sheriff's office directed search parties, both on foot and by air, for the next four days and found no signs of Penaflor, according to CNN. Once rescued, Penaflor explained he saw search helicopters fly over him but was unable to get their attention. The four-day search was eventually brought to a close due to an impending storm and no sign of the lost hunter.

The search was reactivated this Saturday and Penaflor was found by another group of hunters on his nineteenth day in the forest. 

Penaflor later told detectives that he survived on squirrels, lizards, a snake, berries, and algae, crawling under a large tree and surrounding himself with leaves and grass to stay warm. He did in fact see deer he initially set out to hunt, but didn't have enough energy to shoot one according to ABC News.

Penaflor, reportedly now in good condition, was found only 3 miles away from where he separated from his hunting partner.