Global Trends Indicate a Coal Comeback Is Unlikely

first_imgGlobal Trends Indicate a Coal Comeback Is Unlikely FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Financial Times:President Donald Trump has pledged to “put our miners back to work” in the US, promising to return high-paying jobs to rundown rural areas of states such as Pennsylvania that brought him victory in last year’s election. Trends in coal markets, both in the US and internationally, suggest that will be an uphill battle.In 2013, the US Energy Information Administration projected that world coal demand would rise 39 per cent by 2040. Now it is expecting growth of just 1 per cent. If not quite “Peak Coal”, it certainly looks like an extended plateau. Projections of energy demand even a few years into the future can never be relied on: there are too many uncertainties in how markets and technology will evolve, and the EIA itself makes clear that this scenario is just one among many possible outcomes. Even so, the latest projection, from the EIA International Energy Outlook 2017, published last week, shows that the promise of eternally rising world demand for coal, which was the consensus expectation just a few years ago, can no longer be taken for granted.China dominates world coal markets, accounting for more than half of total global demand. The EIA believes that Chinese coal consumption may now be on a declining trend, with industrial use for steam and steelmaking already having peaked, and demand for power generation likely to peak around 2023. With demand also in long-term decline in the US and in Europe, growth in some emerging economies, led by India, is not enough to raise total coal use overall.More: ($) The future of coal in seven chartslast_img read more

NTPC executive reaffirms Indian company’s plan to transition from coal to renewables

first_imgNTPC executive reaffirms Indian company’s plan to transition from coal to renewables FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享ETEnergyworld.comState-owned NTPC is looking at green hydrogen and battery storage to drive energy transition and is moving away from coal-based projects, said its Executive Director, Mohit Bhargava.NTPC has set a 32-gigawatt (GW) renewable energy (RE) capacity target by 2032, which is 25 per cent of its total planned capacity of 130 GW. It is also planning to have 10 GW of solar energy by 2022, which entails an investment of about Rs 50,000 crore.“We are no longer looking at new greenfield coal-based projects. We are looking at renewables in a big way and ultimately want to be a large RE player not only within the country but also use renewables as a pillar to promote green hydrogen. We are looking at both green hydrogen and battery storage… In our overall frame of things green hydrogen would play a very important role,” said Bhargava at ETEneryworld’s Energy Transition Summit on Thursday.According to many studies, green hydrogen could be a major player not only in terms of fuel but also in being a feedstock as hydrogen, methanol, and ammonia.The firm is looking at tariff-based renewable energy bids by SECI, NHPC, or state utilities. “We’re also looking at the government schemes and are vigorously pursuing on the Ultra Mega Renewable Energy Power Parks scheme, wherein we are in discussion with Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh for availability of land because that is going to be one of the key things for the growth of renewables,” Bhargava said.NTPC has 5-6 GW renewable energy projects in the pipeline, which is primarily solar power based.[Aarushi Koundal]More: We are looking at both green hydrogen and battery storage: Mohit Bhargava, executive director, NTPClast_img read more

Fear and Loathing in the Smokies

first_imgAn author reveals the dark side of the Smokies—and her psyche. “You’re not going to find a dead body out here,” says Dave Landreth, a salty, retirement-aged hiker, while sliding down a steep rockslide inside Great Smoky Mountains National Park. “There are too many wild boars. They’ll take a corpse apart and won’t leave a skeleton.”It’s a disturbing conversation to have when you’re beginning an off-trail bushwhack, but that’s the frame of mind we’re all in thanks to our trip leader, Jenny Bennett. Bennett is the author of the recent novel, Murder at the Jump Off, a murder mystery that, not coincidentally, is set in the exact terrain we’re about to explore.Luckily, the victim in Bennett’s book isn’t devoured by wild boar. His body is found relatively intact, neck snapped, a thousand feet below the Jump Off, a rocky outcropping with views of Charles Bunion, Mount Guyot, and a large swath of rugged land that has no official trail.That trail-less landscape is where most of the best action of Bennett’s novel is set—a location thick with unforgivably steep slopes, rock slide scars, and brutal patches of rhododendron and briars. That’s also where Bennett is taking us in an attempt to recreate the exact route that Bennett’s victim explored before he was murdered.Murder at the Jump Off coverMorbid? Maybe a little. But we’re talking about a murder-mystery writer here.We drop off the Appalachian Trail via the Porter’s Creek Manway, an old path that settlers once used to connect remote homesteads that has long since overgrown from lack of use. After dropping about a grand of elevation, our plan is to climb back up to the ridge line via the left fork of Lester Prong, which will deliver us to the Jump Off, where Bennett’s fictional victim is murdered.One of the joys of reading Murder at the Jump Off is the fact that the setting is real. Not only is the landscape vividly described in a way that only Bennett could describe it, you can go there.Bennett’s novel is made up of two kinds of people: avid bushwhackers obsessed with hiking off-trail, and their loved ones/loathed ones who don’t understand their obsession with bushwhacking. It’s a pretty fair assessment of off-trail hiking in general. You’re either obsessed with it or confounded by it. Add the remote nature of the Smokies (500,000 acres with only a couple of roads traversing it), and you have the recipe for a good murder.Bennett says the book is actually based on a relationship she saw developing between two off-trail hikers that she felt was going south. “I could see how it could turn homicidal,” she tells me as we make our way down Porter’s Creek, a skinny drop-and-pool drainage covered in moss and blowdowns.From that tenuous relationship, Bennett used her bushwhacking experience and love for the Smokies to build a fun, fast murder mystery that is largely set in the most unlikely of places–the jagged, steep drainages that drop vertically from popular tourist attractions like the Jump Off. If you think a jagged, steep gorge is an odd place to dream up a fictional murder, you’ll be absolutely astounded that such a heinous crime could come from the mind of Jenny Bennett, who could be best described as your bookish next door neighbor who spends all of her free time gardening in her backyard or tending to her cats.Bennett is a freelance book editor who is either reading, hiking, or blogging in her spare time. She wears glasses and keeps her grayish hair in a tight ponytail beneath a sensible hat. She’s pushing 60, says things like “goodness,” and has knee problems. But she also tells stories about running away from home in an attempt to live in Haight Ashbury when she was 16. She may come off as timid, but she spends much of her free time bushwhacking through creeks and rock slides by herself. She’s hell with a map and compass and leads off-trail hikes for the Smoky Mountains Hiking Club. The more I hike with Bennett, the stronger I realize she is. I also discover that she’s just dark enough to develop the murder plot at the heart of Murder at the Jumpoff.When I ask her if her hiking partners ever worry about the fact that she was planning a murder plot during all of their off-trail adventures, she smiles and tells me, “Everyone’s really nice to me now.”We make it down Porter’s Creek with ease, but the route gets tougher when we start making our way up Lester Prong. The slope gets steeper the farther we climb, and eventually we find ourselves on a vertical rock slide that’s been overgrown with slick moss. The only safe option we have is to turn around, a decision that will likely result in us hiking out of the Smokies well after dark.Bennett isn’t phased by the new development. Maybe it’s because she’s been in the woods often enough to know that spending the night unexpectedly is sometimes part of the process. Or maybe it’s because she enjoys the added challenge and chance to experience something, some place new…in the dark.“To me, off-trail hiking is a magical journey, a quest to discover incredible places that practically no one ever sees,” she tells me days after we made the slow, dark climb out of Lester Prong. “It does tend to be an obsession, because it can be so difficult that you wouldn’t be motivated to do it unless you are kind of crazed.”Backyard BooksFew books will put you into the thick of the Smokies backcountry like Murder at the Jumpoff, but if you want more literature set in the Southern Appalachians, check out these new titles.Naked Came the Leaf Peeper This novel was written by 12 different Western North Carolina authors. Sounds schizophrenic, but the murder-mystery set in Asheville works in a way that only a murder mystery set in Asheville can.The Cove, Ron Rash Set in Western North Carolina after World War II, The Cove mixes mountain lore with mountain topography for good old fashioned Southern Gothic charm.Nightwoods, Charles FrazierA suspenseful novel set in small town North Carolina during the 1960s in which a guardian has to protect two small children from their stepfather. Sidenote: Frazier is an avid and talented mountain biker.last_img read more

Ibex El Fito Bib ¾

first_imgFor many people cycling is a three-season sport. After what seems like an eternity winter is over, and then comes the spring riding season full of big miles and bigger smiles. Next comes the heat of summer and racing or bike vacations, followed by the mellow fall season complete with friends and post ride brews.The Ibex El Fito Bib is here to change that. Welcome to the year round cycling season. I have been putting in the miles on both road and mountain for the last seven years in the Blue Ridge, so I am all too familiar with the chill of winter. I have always dreaded the cold and the accompanying layer upon layer of clothing to fight the chill. We all know that feeling of trying to find the right amount of layers to keep us warm, but not too warm, and what always seems to be the outcome of not being all that comfortable.I have not had the opportunity to try wool cycling clothing before, so I was eager to saddle up and put the El Fito’s through their paces. Friends had always touted the wicking and temperature regulation properties of wool as top notch, and who can argue with nature right? The opportunity arose to test the knickers out a few weekends ago, and I left the house on my faithful steed to conquer some road miles.chamois The El Fito has a great chamois that is comfortable for even the longest of rides.Three hours later I was back at the house after a wonderful ride. I looked down at my lower half and asked myself “how have I ever ridden in the cold without these bibs?” The fit of the Ibex knickers has some thought behind it. They were comfortable throughout the ride, didn’t bunch up in any areas, and the legs are long enough to completely cover the knee (a problem I have found in other bibs due to my longer legs).  The attention to detail was also incredible with wind blocking material over the knee, excellent stitching, top-notch chamois, and a perfect mix of wool, nylon, and lycra to give it an unparalleled fit.Since that weekend ride I have put in miles on both my road and mountain bike ranging from quick hour spins to four-hour adventures. Each time I go to pack my gear I find myself reaching for the El Fito’s. I have other bib shorts, tights, knee warmers, and the like but they just don’t compare to the fit and quality of the Ibex.wind proof knee The attention to detail, such as the wind proofing on the knee, set the El Fito’s apart from other options.At 6’ 1” and 165 pounds I went with a size large, and it fits quite well. I know for some of you out there the $160 price tag may seem a touch high. I did a bit of research and many other company’s options are right around this price point. Also the El Fito’s are made with New Zealand Merino Wool and not synthetics, so there’s that.Final thought: If you want to tackle winter riding, buy yourself a pair of Ibex El Fito Bib shorts and kiss cold legs goodbye.last_img read more

Bringing Back the Brook Trout

first_imgThe future of brook trout like this one from West Virginia is in jeopardy, but not all hope is lost.It’s no secret that the brook trout is in trouble. It is estimated that brookies inhabit only nine percent of their former native habitat in the East, and are especially vulnerable in the Southern Appalachians due to many factors. The brook trout is not only a beautiful and lively game fish for anglers, it is an indicator of water quality as they require only the cleanest, coolest water to survive. Once prevalent in large streams, they are not relegated to headwaters high in the mountains. Luckily, there are groups like Trout Unlimited and the Eastern Brook Trout Joint Venture that are working aggressively to slow the decline of natural brook trout habitat, and they took another big step to that end at a workshop in West Virginia this past November.Among other things, the main focus of the workshop was to establish a more acute process for monitoring brook trout populations: identifying populations per square mile, as oppose to the previous per 30 square miles. This will allow fishery managers to pinpoint more accurately where to concentrate their restoration and conservation efforts. On the flip side, the new approach and finer data will reveal just how bad the situation has gotten for these fragile fish. As the climate warms, so will the water pushing brookies further up stream and further limiting their ability to survive.Trout Unlimited Chesapeake Bay Land Protection Coordinator Kevin Anderson lays out the whole situation in more detail in this blog post on Trout Unlimited’s website. There is also a very informative video, featuring an impressive W.Va. brookie embedded below.If you are a small stream, brook trout enthusiasts, please take a moment to read through Anderson’s post and consider joining the efforts to preserve the habitat of the East’s only native trout before it’s too late.From the Field: Linking land and water in brook trout conservation from Chesapeake Bay Program on Vimeo.last_img read more

Weekend Pick: Oskar Blues 4 Mile Road Race

first_imgDuring this time of Catholic uncertainty, one thing is known: St. Patrick’s Day will happen this Sunday, March 17, 2013. There may be a pope in residence at the Vatican, but there is also a leprechaun out there with a pot of gold at the end of some double rainbow – or so they say. Whether you adhere to the religious nature of the holiday or not, St. Patrick’s Day is certainly a day for feasting, revelry, and celebration. Those of Irish decent tend to take the “holiday” a little more seriously than other – as they should; it’s their heritage all over the place – and lucky for them it falls on a Sunday this year. Not only will this afford them a whole day of toasting their native saint, it also leaves time enough to get a good workout in before donning a green hat and pinching strangers.Major snow last week put spring on hold, but a wet March and warm temperatures means that there should be something coming out of the ground or sprouting from the trees. Get up early this weekend and take a run or a long walk; you will feel much better about yourself later in the day. A good sweat goes a long way during a long day of drinki…I mean…celebration, so get the jump start on shedding some of those Guinness calories. Rain is in the forecast so you may get soaked, but it will be worth it in the long run.If you want to combine your two passions on St. Paddy’s Day, sign up for the Oskar Blues 4 Mile Road Race in Brevard, N.C. on Sunday. The four mile road race begins at the new Oskar Blues brewery and runs flat and fast along Davidson River and Cemetery roads, before finishing back at the brewery. There will be a Celtic jam band playing at the tap room after, so bring your party pants. Register online or on race day beginning at 7:30am.View Larger Maplast_img read more

Mountain Mama: Step-up Your Backcountry Cooking With These Recipes

first_imgDear Mountain Mama,I’m taking my girlfriend on her first overnight backpacking trip and want to do everything possible to ensure she enjoys it. Normally, I don’t put much thought into food. I’m easy – my only request is no tofu. But my girlfriend is a foodie and I want to impress her.Do you know of any good one-pot recipes for dinner and breakfast?Thanks,BackpackerDear Backpacker,Aww, that’s so sweet that you’re putting so much thought into the small details. I’m a woman after all and it’s in my DNA to gush a little. If I’m vicariously thrilled by your effort, just imagine how pleased your lucky lady will be.After a long day of hiking, this Gnocchi with Bacon recipe dishes up warm, comfort food. At home, combine ½ cup of Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon of dried sage, and 1 teaspoon garlic powder and store in a zip-loc bag. Boil shelf stable gnocchi (sold at Trader Joe’s) until the gnocchi floats to the top, drain and add cheese mixture. Add shelf stable bacon as desired.Breakfast burritos are a yummy way to fuel up in the morning. To minimize the pot scrubbing, put the eggs into a plastic bag (you can use the leftover zip-loc bags from dinner) and then boil into the eggs don’t run. Add avocado and shelf stable bacon, season with salt and pepper, and roll up using the flavored tortilla wrap of your choice.Backpacker, just keep in that your girlfriend will expect good food on future backpacking trips, so don’t make the food too elaborate. And remember that so much of how food tastes depends on the dining experience. Set the mood by creating soft lighting.  Wrap your headlamp around a colored Nalgene bottle (length-wise), make sure the light shines through the plastic, and, ta-da, your water bottle is now a soft glowing lantern.Bon Appetite!Mountain Mamalast_img read more

New Protections Proposed for Pisgah-Nantahala

first_imgThe United States Forest Service is considering adding as much 264,000 acres of the Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests to its wilderness inventory—a move that would protect the selected acreage from logging, road building, fracking, and mining. While most of the inventoried lands will not ultimately be designated as wilderness, the inventory suggests that the Forest Service is committed to protecting the wild character of the Pisgah-Nantahala.The new developments are the latest stage in a lengthy planning process that will guide the future of the Pisgah-Nantahala—a swath of land that encompasses some 1 million acres of public land in Western North Carolina—for the next 15 years.In addition to the potential wilderness additions, Pisgah-Nantahala stands to gain as many as 53 Wild and Scenic River designations under the newly proposed plan.Currently, there are only three Wild and Scenic rivers in the entire state of North Carolina: the Chattooga River, The Horespasture River, and Wilson Creek.Newly eligible rivers include the Davidson River, the French Broad, the Linville River, the Nolichucky, the entire Mills River system, and the East Fork Pigeon River, just to name a few.One portion of Pisgah National Forest that would benefit immensely from the Forest Service’s proposed wilderness inventory additions is Buncombe County’s Big Ivy.Big Ivy, which was previously on the chopping block for potential timber production, has long been a popular hiking, mountain biking, fly fishing, and trail running destination for Western North Carolina locals and visitors alike. The terrain includes the Black and Craggy Mountains, with summits that top out above 6,000 feet, and over 3,600 acres of biologically significant old growth forest. Big Ivy also houses the 70-foot, free-falling Douglas Falls.“All of Big Ivy except the areas west of Stony Fork and north of Highway 197 are included in the inventory,” reads a statement on the Friends of Big Ivy website. “This would ensure that all current recreational and cultural uses can continue and that Big Ivy’s wild forests and creeks will be protected long-term.”Our hope is that most of Big Ivy could be protected as wilderness, especially its old-growth forests and pristine headwaters. Big Ivy’s trail system should not be in wilderness but should be managed as a backcountry area, where recreation is prioritized and commercial logging is prohibited.The latest version of the revision plan would also inventory lands adjacent to existing wilderness areas like the Linville Gorge, the Middle Prong Wilderness, the Southern Nantahala Wilderness, and the Ellicott Rock Wilderness. For a detailed, interactive map that highlights the proposed inventory areas click here.Right now the Forest Service is actively seeking public input and feedback about the proposed changes. Let them know where you stand by attending the public meeting on from 6 to 8 p.m. November 16 in the Mountain View Room of the Kimmel arena on the campus of UNC-Asheville.last_img read more

Backpacking 101: Six Essential Tips for your Inaugural Thru-Hike

first_imgBen King grew up exploring the wilds that surround Bryson City, North Carolina. He turned this passion into a career when he opened Bryson City Outfitters last April. His quaint, downtown shop houses gear, offers advice, and upholds a community-minded ethos.“Community over commerce,” says King. “Local independent shops have a lot of experience and knowledge to impart. I think that has a lot more value than amazon.com.”King is a specialist at dialing in beginning backpackers. Here are a few of his tips.1. NavigationPlan a modest route. Do not overestimate yourself. Make sure you find the right map. “I use National Geographic maps,” King says. Eventually learning to use a compass will provide added security. King sends a lot of hikers to Nantahala National Forest. Smoky Mountain National Park, it should be remembered, requires reservations, a camping fee, and does not allow dogs. His regional favorites include Wesser Bald, Deep Creek, and Panther Town. Wherever you choose, make sure to plan a manageable journey and bring a good map.fullsizerender-22. Pick the Right Pack “For a short trip a 32-liter pack should do it,” says Kings. “You don’t want just any pack. If your pack doesn’t fit properly, you’ll be sore and have a horrible trip.” According to King, good suspension and proper fitting are key. You want the weight on your hips. “As an independent, small retailer this is where our knowledge comes into effect,” explains King. He recommends two of the oldest companies in the industry, Gregory and Kelty. “They invest a lot of time into systems to fit torsos,” he says. “Gregory comes with a rain fly. Going backpacking without a rain fly is a nightmare. That rain fly can be lifesaver.”    fullsizerender-3 3. Sleep Tight“I try to introduce beginners to the mummy style bag. A good synthetic 32-degree bag will meet their needs. At any outdoor gear shop you’ve got 500 different options. Packability size is a big thing – how small can you get it. You don’t want to be lugging around a huge bag.” As for brands King says Kelty and Sea to Summit sleeping bags are the way to go.4. Tent Over Hammock “Going out into the backcountry for the first time you are going to be more comfortable in a tent than a hammock. You want to be looking at a three-season tent. I try to find a tent that has a footprint – a piece that goes down first before you set it up to give you a little extra insulation from the ground. I would stick to a two pole system with a rain fly. They’re not going to be super light weight without paying big bucks, but you can split up weight with two people.” fullsizerender5. Calories Count  A butane single burner stove and 100 gram canister mean hot meals, however there are countless strategies to getting vital calories. Instead of expensive dried meals, King gathers grocery store basics. “I take Ramen and packaged salmon or tuna. Take those dried starches to save a lot of weight. Summer sausage. Cheese. It takes a long time for cheese to get moldy.” King advises backpackers to not worry about anything more than calories. “You want to replace those calories that you’re losing. Poptarts are not necessarily good for you, but there are a lot of calories and they go down easy. Also, trail mix. It’s worth the reward, but make sure you pour into your partner’s hand. Don’t let them reach in the bag.” 6. Clean Water “Water filtration is a big thing,” says King. “I am comfortable identifying a spring or a clean water source, but having something to filter water is source of mental stability.” For a two-day hike, most people can carry enough water, but the extra weight is burdensome. King uses a sawyer mini water filtration system. “It’s a filter about four inches long. You can screw it on a bottle or use like a life straw straight from the source. My backup is always to have your iodine tablets.”last_img read more

48 Hours in Tucker County, West Virginia

first_imgIn the northeast corner of West Virginia nestled between mountains, lakes, and rivers lies the tiny, quaint county of Tucker. Though the county has a small population of under 5,000, the large sense of community has helped create one of the most beautiful, booming outdoor areas in the United States. Winters filled with an abundance of snow have created a serene mountain setting ideal for skiing and snowshoeing while rugged terrain leaves mountain bikers with exciting and challenging trails sure to test their ability. And the unique and diverse beauty of nature in the Dolly Sods Wilderness Area is a backpacking favorite.  Whatever your source of thrill, no matter the time of year, Tucker County will serve as the perfect backdrop.Before you begin:Stop over at the Tucker County CVB in downtown Davis for local beta, brochures, and maps. You can check them out online before you even get to town.Day One:Cross-Country Ski at White GrassWith an average annual snowfall of around 160 inches, a visit to Tucker County in the colder months leaves you no choice but to bundle up and grab your skis. White Grass Ski Touring Center boasts 42 interwoven trails with over 1200 feet of altitude change, leaving you with hours of eager exploring and adventure for all skill levels. The well-maintained trails include small hills and guided instruction for beginners or steep forest expeditions for those with more experience. Refuel with phenomenal food and live music in the café every Friday throughout the winter months.Explore the Dolly Sods WildernessSodds1High above, on the Allegheny Plateau, is the beautifully diverse Dolly Sods Wilderness. Due to a logging craze that occurred several centuries ago and an unusual climate, this stretch of land is home to rocky plains and grassy meadows, muddy bogs and damp swamps, breathtaking vistas, and plant life similar to that of northern Canada.LentTwilightThe unique land formations that vary from one mile to the next make for the perfect hike, lasting anywhere from several hours to several days. For a longer trip with one of the best overlooks in the region, Lions Head hike takes you on a three-day, two-night hike with over 2,500 feet of elevation gain on your way to a majestic rock formation resembling, you guessed it, a lion’s head righteously protecting to his mountains and valleys below.Enjoy all that Canaan Valley Resort has to offerDuring the winter months, Canaan Valley is where it’s at. Glide down 1,200 feet of packed snow at the resort’s snow tube park, which features the longest lanes in the Mid-Atlantic.photo-03Canaan also offers a beautiful ice skating rink that overlooks the Allegheny Mountains and surrounding valley. With a snow adventure for every age and ability, you and your family will certainly leave the resort satisfied and craving more snow. Of course, you shouldn’t miss out on the skiing and snowboarding here. Pick up rentals for your snow-cation at the recently opened Driftland Ski and Sport in downtown Davis. Their friendly and expert staff will help get you fitted with the right pieces of equipment or repair your own.Day Two:Learn to Tele at Timberline Ski Resortrsz_1cvb-dec_2012-31Telemark is a technique skiers use to combine two different ways of skiing. At Timberline Ski Resort, professional instructors take participants step by step to teach them the ins and outs of telemark skiing. Their careful instruction will help you learn the perfect bent-knee turns and teach you how to adjust to the heel-free binding system unique to this ski style.timberlineAfter several hours and many helpful tips and demos, you can walk away a better, more agile skier. Timberline’s professional and friendly staff also offers guided group or private instruction in snowboarding, alpine, and backcountry skiing. Oh yeah, and the bar here always draws an interesting nighttime crowd.Get Technical with Mountain BikingIf you’re looking to stay warm and dry during an unchallenging mountain bike ride, Tucker County probably isn’t for you. But if you’re prepared to cope with rain, cold, or both, and enhance your mountain biking skills, you’ve found the right place! Not always beginner friendly, Tucker County’s mountain biking scene is characterized by technical roots, rocks, slick surfaces, and often-steep climbs and furious downhills. A favorite local loop is the Hellbender Cirque which offers nearly 15 miles of steep ascents and descents through scenic, high-altitude terrain. For trusted bike help, equipment, or rentals, check out Blackwater Bikes. They can assist you with full-service bike repair, rentals, top-quality gear, and tips and advice for the region. Want to ride, even if there’s snow on the ground? Blackwater Bikes is offering fat tire rentals for the first time ever! What better way to explore the trails in winter?Float the North Fork of the Blackwater RiverDuring the warmer months, the Blackwater River’s flatter stretches of water are a perfect way for river lovers to enjoy all that characterizes Tucker County. Blackwater Outdoor Adventures is your outfitter for kayak, canoe, stand-up paddleboards, and tubing rentals. They provide various lengths of trips ranging from one and two hours to full day paddles. Looking to fish? In the Blackwater Canyon, known for its large and abundant brook, rainbow, and brown trout, anglers can enjoy catch and release fly fishing.Food:Bright Morning Inn and Restaurant This quaint breakfast joint sits in the heart of downtown Davis, West Virginia. Surrounded by the area’s best natural attractions, Bright Morning Inn is designed to fuel the everyday adventurer. Made with many regional, fresh ingredients, breakfast items range from burritos and omelets to pancakes and locally made granola and yogurt.bright morningHellbender BurritosFor an Americanized spin on authentic Mexican burritos, head to Hellbender’s. The menu includes plenty of vegetarian friendly options, tacos, soups, starters, and traditional burrito options. If you are up for trying something new, the Goofy Foot is a local favorite which includes tofu, soy sauce, cucumbers and tomatoes, topped with mouthwatering jalapeño jack cheese and garlic mayonnaise.Sirianni’s Pizza CaféWith two locations in Canaan Valley and Davis, West Virginia, this authentic pizza shop has almost 30 years of perfecting ingredients under their belt. The eclectic and homie feel, fresh ingredients, and the friendly and attentive servers create a local favorite and a not-to-miss stop for visitors. Stumptown AlesA new addition to the local brew scene, the atmosphere here is cozy, the workers are welcoming, and the beer is incredible. Different from most breweries, Stumptown focuses on super hoppy, in-your-face beers. Their high standards will suit every beer lover’s expectations.Mountain State Brewing Co.Mountain States brews are so good that they now have three different brewpubs scattered across two different states. Mountain State Brewing is not only the largest brewing company in West Virginia but one of the oldest. From the beer to the bar to the building, everything is crafted with skill, quality, and perfection.Blackwater Brewing Co.Sitting near the entrance of Blackwater Falls State Park is the award winning Blackwater Brewing Co. They focus on producing small-batch craft beers such as German, English, and Belgian session ales and lagers. Open for less than four years, Blackwater Brewing has already earned several awards and continues to brew high quality beer.Lodging:Black Bear ResortChoose a cabin, suite, or deluxe home-away-from-home right in the Valley! You’re just a few minutes’ drive from Timberline, Canaan Valley, and White Grass. The property itself is just as scenic as the surrounding views of Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Cabin Mountain, and Timberline ski area. There are even catch and release fish ponds on site! With jacuzzis available in every nearly every rental, you may never want to leave…and really, can we blame you?The Purple Fiddle HostelNot only is it the place to go for riveting live music, but the Purple Fiddle also offers a clean bed to crash after a long day. They have 15 beds, two shared bathrooms, a pool table, and are conveniently located across the street from the Allegheny Highland trailhead. If you’re lucky, the musical act of the night might be sharing a bed across from you.Blackwater Falls State ParkEach of the 39 cozy cabins includes a bath and shower as well as a stone fire place to really give you the cabin feel. This is the perfect place to stay if you plan to do a lot of adventuring in the park, which has trails for hiking, groomed trails for cross-country skiing, waterfalls to admire, and also a sweet sledding hill that was opened last year.The Garage MahalLocated trailside at White Grass is the elegant and secluded Garage Mahal, a must for any skier who wants to start their morning just a few steps from the trails at White Grass. Visitors can also enjoy trekking to an enchanted bubbling sand spring located within walking distance from the house.Bright Morning InnFilled with history and stories from every kind of outdoorsman, Bright Morning Inn was originally built in 1896 as temporary housing for lumberjacks. After a complete renovation, it now contains eight bedrooms and holds a total of 25 guests. The history of the Inn is brought alive through the rustic pine floors, telling antiques, and beautiful, hand-made quilts. The best part is waking up to the tempting smell of their famous breakfast and following your nose only footsteps to enjoy it.Upcoming Events:Wild Thing WeekendBring the family out to the slopes to enjoy plenty of family-fun activities, contests, and the Governor’s Cup Ski Race. Get wild as you cheer on skiers in the longest running ski race in the Southeast. Contestants for the race will enjoy two days of vigorous racing, smack talk, and the fight to claim the prized first place. March 4—6 at Canaan Valley ResortTimberline Resort’s Snowy Luau FestivalWhat could be better than a Hawaiian-themed festival with friends and family on the slopes of a ski resort? There’s sure to be plenty of games, contests, food, fireworks, and ski races during this year’s annual action-packed festival. Break out your favorite Hawaiian shirt, lei, coconut bikini, and snow pants and bring the family out to one of the area’s favorite attractions. March 11—13Card Board and Duct Tape Sled RaceYou’ve crafted a makeshift sled out of old pizza boxes and duct tape before, so why not see how your piece of art competes against others? This new and fun event awards competitors for not only creating the fastest corrugated cardboard sled, but also for team spirit and best designs. This year’s theme: Mystical Creatures! February 27 at Blackwater Falls State ParkNATO Telemark Adventure TourWake up early and head out on the snowy mountains to enjoy hours of guided instructional tours from experienced North American Telemark Organization (NATO) staff. You’ll enjoy backcountry ski instruction as you explore the beautiful Dolly Sods Wilderness and surrounding area. February 6—7 at White GrassNative Knowledge “I was drawn to the area for the outdoor activities it has to offer. I initially moved to Tucker County in 2003 for an environmental job. Since then, it’s the wonderful, small, close knit community that has kept me and my wife Shannon here.  It’s where we have chosen to remain in order to raise our daughter Delaney.  The quality of life, exposure to all things outdoors, incredible people within the community, and overall positive energy in Tucker County are second to none.”Rob Stull of Blackwater Bikes[divider]more 48 hours[/divider] saludNightlife:TipTopFormerly known as HypnoCoffee in Davis, West Virginia, TipTop is the perfect place to head for all your nighttime spirit needs. Friday nights they not only offer their daily crafted cocktails and fine wine and beer, but also all the local grass-fed beef deliciousness you could ever dream of on burger night (with plenty of vegetarian options also available).The Purple FiddleSo you’re probably wondering, “With an outdoor town this amazing, there has to be some pretty damn good live music too, right?” Correct, and it’s at the Purple Fiddle. Here, on weekend nights, the community gathers to clap, stomp, sing, and sway to Appalachian-based acoustic music. The facility, though small in size, has hosted such big names such as the Avett Brothers and Greensky Bluegrass. It’s the perfect nighttime event for the whole family where you can also order some tasty adult beverages.last_img read more