Mountain town news roundup |

Mountain town news roundup

Compiled by Lauren Glendenning

Stink bugs invade

LAKE TAHOE — stinky bug called The Say’s stinkbug has invaded yards and fields across western Nevada, according to the Nevada Department of Agriculture.

The department and the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offices have received numerous calls about the insect from area citizens concerned about the Chlorochroa sayi.

“The Say’s stink bug gets its name from an offensive odor released when disturbed,” NDA state entomologist Jeff Knight stated in the release. “It develops on a weed called tumble mustard in disturbed and burned areas. As these areas dry up the immature insects will migrate to adjacent greener areas.”

Knight added that the insect usually does not feed on horticultural plants in yards and gardens, but prefers to feed on developing seeds and may occasionally feed on grain crops, various fruits and potatoes.

“It may need to be controlled in these situations if numbers are high,” Knight said. “The stink bugs may be difficult to control once they become adults.”

As adults, the insects are good flyers and are highly attracted to lights. If high numbers are a nuisance around lights, changing the light to an amber or yellow color could reduce the problem.

This insect may have more than one generation per year in Nevada. Second generation numbers are usually much lower due to the lack of large areas of the preferred weedy plants.

— Tahoe Daily Tribune

Sochi residents face pre-Olympic laundry crackdown

SOCHI, Russia — Laundry drying on balconies and air conditioners that look “chaotic” will earn Sochi residents fines of up to $46 as the city focuses on looking pretty ahead of next year’s Winter Olympics, authorities said.

The crackdown has come about because Sochi “should look especially decent in a zone of international hospitality,” the local government said Tuesday in a website statement that explicitly linked the move to “the preparation period for the Games.”

The move invites comparisons to Potemkin villages, a possibly apocryphal tale of an 18th century general creating attractive fake settlements to impress Empress Catherine the Great.

“If people have made the decision to install an air conditioner, they should have a symmetrical location on the building and be agreed upon with all the (other) owners, so that in the future if the owners put up equipment, it isn’t placed in a chaotic way, but in an agreed scheme,” Sochi’s deputy mayor Yevgeny Gorlov said in a website statement.

Sochi residents should “not hang laundry on balconies, but use special areas,” local authorities said.

Some cases have already been recorded, the local government said. The violations carry fines from 50 rubles ($1.50) to 1,500 rubles ($46).

There is a precedent for pre-Olympic tidying-up programs. Ahead of the 2008 Games in Beijing, the Chinese government embarked on various initiatives to encourage locals to wait in line in stores properly, dress more stylishly and even cut down on bad breath by eating less garlic.

— The Moscow Times

Boy rescued after fall on Mt. Hood

MT. HOOD, Ore. — A 10-year-old boy was airlifted off Mount Hood early Wednesday after a 150-foot fall while hiking with his father.

Cole Hancock was camping with his father Kim in the White River Canyon area when he fell down an embankment. Kim Hancock called 911 at about 9 p.m. and crews were able to get his son out of the area six hours later.

He fell near the White River Sno-Park off Oregon 35, according to the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office. An emergency dispatcher said Wednesday morning the father was able to rescue the child and carry him back to their camp where he hunkered down and called 911. Rescuers from the Crag Rats and the Parkdale Fire Department hiked in to the camp, bundled up the boy and carried him out, she said.

About 3 a.m., a waiting Life Flight helicopter at White River airlifted the child to the Hospital, she said.

Cole continues to recover at Oregon Health Science University Hospital, after suffering serious injuries from that near Mount Hood.

His dad says he has several skull fractures, and cuts and bruises to his body.

— The Oregonian and Fox12 Oregon.

Whistler sled dogs find new homes

WHISTLER, British Columbia — When word went out last week that 86 sled dogs in the Whistler Sled Dog Co. kennel needed to find homes, offers to take them immediately started coming in. According to Sue Eckersley, who works for the kennel, more than 300 email messages from people with questions or messages of support were sent to the address set up for the dogs. The animals were put out of work when the company folded its operations and announced it wouldn’t be offering sled dog tours next winter.

Eckersley said the Victoria Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals took 10 dogs last week and another 15 are expected to follow this week. The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Vancouver also took five dogs and Eckersley said WAG found homes for a pair of dogs last week.

At least four dogs are expected to go to Jaime Hargreaves, who has a kennel of sled dogs in the Callaghan Valley and operates tours for Canadian Wilderness Adventures.

Eckersley said she believes Hargreaves is an ethical dog sled operator who truly loves her dogs, so she is comfortable with Hagreaves taking some of them from the kennel.

“We do believe that Jaime loves her dogs and is doing the best she can,” said Eckersley.

Eckersley is now calling on Whistler to make sure the sled dog industry in the resort is held to a high standard.

“You have to hold people accountable that actually care about being accountable — have something to lose,” said Eckersley as she listed off booking agents, local veterinarians and customers as those who can be kept accountable. “They (tour operators) have very little to lose and they feel like they’ve got more to gain by not doing it properly because there’s more profit in it by doing it improperly.”

— Pique News Magazine

Poconos ski area up for auction

POCONO MOUNTAINS, Penn. — A longtime Analomink, Penn., ski area will be sold to the highest bidder in September.

Alpine Mountain Ski and Snowtubing will be sold by competitive sealed bid two years after a private development management company bought it in a county tax sale.

Appletree Management bought and continued to operate the ski facility after managing the property for three years for former owner Charles Poalillo.

Appletree principal Jim Ott said the company always saw the property as a good investment, but wants to focus on its core business of managing properties.

“We felt it was a worthwhile purchase, at least in the short term,” Ott said. “Alpine, even though it’s a seasonal business, it’s a year-round business. It’s time to put it in the hands of someone who has a longer-term vision than we do.”

Appletree used operating revenue generated the past two years to upgrade facilities, he said.

The 103-acre property includes a lodge, three large social areas, a bar without a liquor license, a ski patrol building, kitchen and dining facilities and a fully equipped ski and snowboard rental area. It has snowmaking capabilities, including a compressor, snow guns, groomer and snowmobiles.

Alpine Mountain’s main business has been downhill skiing and snowtubing. It has multiple ski lifts.

“It’s a complete operation,” said Bill Howze of Renaissance Auction Group, which is handling the sale. “It always survived in its niche market when it had good management.”

Sealed bids will be accepted through Sept. 11, Howze said. Interested buyers should contact him at, or call 610-370-2879 for bid packages and financial information.

— Pocono Record

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