November 13, 2012

    Photo: Cassi G/Flickr

Storm Prompts Ski Resorts to Open Early

Utah, California, and Colorado

Ski resorts in Utah, Colorado, and California bumped up their opening dates this week after a late fall storm dumped record amounts of snow across the West. Brighton, Utah, will be the first major resort to open when it starts running its lifts on Tuesday. Alta and Snowbird received nearly five feet of snow and will open on Friday and Saturday, respectively. Wolf Creek in Colorado plans to open Wednesday, and Silverton Mountain said it was considering moving up its scheduled December 1 opening date. Four more Lake Tahoe ski resorts—Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, and Squaw—are also set to open this week.

Via ABC4


    Photo: brewbooks/Flickr

Rainier Snowboarders Await Rescue

Two were caught in storm

Rescue teams are hoping to reach two snowboarders stranded on Mount Rainier this morning after failing to reach them last night. Derek Tyndall and Thomas Dale took shelter in a snow cave at around 10,000 feet and called for help Sunday after being caught in a storm that dumped two to four feet of snow. They used a cell phone to call 911. Mount Rainier National Park spokesman Kevin Bacher said that rescuers hoped to reach them before being shut down by the sunset. "Darkness comes early this time of the year," Bacher said, "so we only have a few hours of daily really to get to them and find them and get them down before nightfall." As of Tuesday morning, the snow was so deep that a team of 30 rescuers was still having difficulty reaching the two.

UPDATE, 1:24 p.m. MT: A rescue team has located the two snowboarders, according to a national park spokeswoman, and is making its way to them now. No word yet on their condition.



    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Vonn Hospitalized With Intestinal Pain

Awaiting test results

World Cup champion Lindsey Vonn remains in a Vail, Colorado, hospital with severe intestinal pain, a spokesman said on Tuesday. "She told me she feels bad and has pain all over her body and that her bones are hurting," said her ski technician, Heniz Haemmerle. "She's been [to the hospital] two or three times. This is the first time she's stayed overnight." Vonn hasn't been skiing since going out in the second run of the season's first World Cup event in Soelden, Austria, on October 27, Haemmerle said. The next event she's scheduled to compete in is the World Cup stop in Aspen on November 24. Vonn's representatives said they will provide an update once they have received test results and more information is available.

Via USA Today


An offshore, deepwater drilling platform.     Photo: Wikimedia Commons

U.S. to Surpass Saudia Arabia in Oil Production

IAE predicts American energy independence

The shape of the world’s energy landscape is changing. According to the International Energy Agency, the United States could surpass Saudi Arabia as the world’s leading oil producer by 2017, as well as unseat Russia as the leading producer of natural gas within three years. The IAE’s annual World Energy Outlook cites unconventional (and controversial) technologies such as hydraulic fracking and deepwater drilling as a large part of America’s “energy renaissance.” According to the IAE’s chief economist, Faith Birol, U.S. oil imports are on track to fall from 10 million barrels per day to four million. While increased domestic production accounts for roughly 55 percent of the reduction, Birol also credits better federal fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks with making up the other half. The report concluded that the U.S., which imports about 20 percent of its energy now, could become self-sufficient by 2035.

Via National Geographic