February 14, 2012
Alberto Contador at the 2009 Tour de France

Alberto Contador at the 2009 Tour de France     Photo: hyku/Flickr

Spain Sports Minister: Doping a Problem

Spain to crack down in bid for Olympics

On Tuesday, Spain's minister for sports acknowledged that country has a problem with doping that must be addressed as Spain bids for the 2020 Olympics. Jose Ignacio Wert, minister of Education, Culture, and Sport said he would crack down on doping violations and bring Spain in line with WADA's anti-doping code. "Of course we have a problem with doping, there's no secret it's one of the hottest topics of the moment," he said. The statement follows last week's Court of Arbitration for Sport decision to ban Spanish cyclist Alberto Contador for two years. Madrid on Tuesday submitted a bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics.

Read more at ESPN


Nanga Parbat

Nanga Parbat     Photo: Guilhem Vellut/Flickr

Moro and Urubko Abandon Nanga Parbat

Forecast calls for two weeks of snow

Climbers Simone Moro and Denis Urubko on Tuesday halted their attempt to make the first winter ascent of Nanga Parbat after being pinned down in base camp by 80 mile-per-hour winds and heavy snow. In a videotaped message, Moro and Urubko said they would take advantage of a window of good weather on Wednesday and Thursday—the only one projected for the next two weeks—to break down their base camp and hike out. "We took some risks, more than we normally take, but the situation is not changing," Moro said. The partners, who together made the first winter ascents of Makalu and Gasherbrum II, had planned to ascend Nanga Parbat via a new line to the left of the Diamir Face.

Read more at PlanetMountain


Telluride, Colorado

Telluride, Colorado     Photo: Ken Kinder/Wikimedia

Telluride Local Killed in Avalanche

Snowboarder wearing airbag, Avalung

A 38-year-old Colorado man died in an avalanche on Monday while snowboarding in sidecountry terrain near Telluride. A pair of skiers discovered Nate Soules after seeing signs of a slide outside Telluride's eastern boundary in the Bear Creek area shortly after noon. Soules was travelling alone but was equipped with avalanche survival equipment, including a beacon, Avalung, and an avalanche airbag. San Miguel County Sheriff Bill Masters said the airbag had been deployed but was "shredded." Soules was found buried under four feet of snow and had sustained serious head injuries. The Colorado Avalanche Information Center posted an avalanche warning on Monday following a storm that deposited as much as 10 inches of new snow in the San Juan mountains. Soules is the fifth person to die in a Colorado avalanche this season.

Read more at The Watch


White-tailed deer

White-tailed deer     Photo: Artur Pedziwilk/Flickr

D.C. Considers Sniping Deer

Ungulates overwhelming Rock Creek Park

Officials in Washington, D.C. are considering using snipers from the federal government to cull 80 percent of the white-tailed deer population in Rock Creek Park. Deer have caused disturbances in nearby neighborhoods and have eroded areas of the park from over grazing. Wildlife officers euthanized one animal last month after it crashed through the window of a public library. The plan calls for snipers from the United States Department of Agriculture who would operate during winter nights to avoid park visitors. The meat would then be donated to local food banks and homeless shelters. A decision on the plan, which has been under consideration since 2009, is expected as early as this week.

Read more at The Guardian