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JUNE'S NEWS IN BRIEF
Saturday June 1, 2019 - Email this article to a friend

50 glacial lakes under Greenland, Lowther Hills crowd funding for groomer + funds rasied for shot Russian snowboard champion. ROLLING...

 



NEWS IN BRIEF STORIES FROM MAY 2019

FRIDAY 28TH JUNE

50 GLACIAL LAKES UNDER GREENLAND

Scientists have identified more than 50 new lakes of liquid water lying under the Greenland Ice Sheet.

Only four had previously been found.

If all Greenland's ice were to melt it would increase the global ocean height by 7m.

Glacial melt in GreenlandGlacial melt in Greenland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THURSDAY 27TH JUNE

LOWTHER HILLS WANTS ITS OWN GROOMING MACHINE

Lowther Hill Ski Club in South Scotland, is campaigning to raise £9,000 to buy a snow groomer.

With its own piste basher, the club would be able to maintain the snow longer, and claims it would double the number of ski days on its ski slopes.

The club has already built the garage and access area to house this beauty.

It now needs to raise the remaining half of the target.

The club hopes to have the groomer in place and working during the 2019/2020 winter season.

Visit the crowd funding Go Fund Me page.

Lowther Hills Ski Club is a community-owned and volunteer-run ski centre.

Crowdfunding at Lowther Hills Ski area to buy this beastCrowdfunding at Lowther Hills Ski area to buy this beast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New garage waiting to house new snow groomerNew garage waiting to house snow groomer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY 25TH JUNE

FUNDS RAISED FOR FAMILY OF MURDERED RUSSIAN SNOWBOARD CHAMPION

Dmitry Koltsov was randomly killed in a drive by shooting in Los Angeles two weeks ago.

We reported on it at the time.

Russian snowboard champion shot

In 2010 he won the bronze medal at the Big Air Snowboard Championship and the silver medal at the Swiss Open Half Pipe Championship,

His body remained unidentified for several days while authorities in the US located his family in Russia.

His friends have started a campaign to raise money to help cover the cost of transporting his body back to Russia.

As of Monday night, more than $17,000 has been raised.

A man, Rhett Nelson, has been arrested and faces charges.

He is also accused of killing an off-duty policeman.

MONDAY 24TH JUNE

BODIES OF MISSING CLIMBERS RECOVERED

Seven of the eight bodies have been recovered by Indian paramilitary soldiers.

They were in an international climbing team tackling Nanda Devi East in India last month and were struck by an avalanche.

There were four British people, two Americans, one Australian and an Indian.

Soldiers found the bodies at an altitude of over 16,000 feet.

Accident locationAccident location

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Efforts will continue to recover the last body.

We reported on the tragedy earlier:

The group was led by experienced British mountain guide Martin Moran, whose Scotland-based company Moran Mountain has run numerous expeditions in the Indian Himalayas.

Martin MoranMartin Moran - photo Moran Mountain Facebook



























SUNDAY 23RD JUNE

INAUGURATION OF NEW IOC HQ

It comes today on the 125th anniversary of the creation of the International Olympic Committee.

June 23rd is Olympic Day and sees the official inauguration of Olympic House in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The IOC is stressing three aspects of the new building:

  • It has met the most demanding sustainability standards both locally and internationally. It has been designed as a sustainable building in terms of both construction and operations, with special efforts put into energy and water efficiency, waste reduction and landscape integration.
  • It aims to regroup all IOC staff in one location, resulting in cost savings and increased collaboration.
  • It also represents an investment by the IOC in the local economy and development. Eighty per cent of the construction of the building has been completed by local companies and contributed to the development of local competencies.

It was designed by Danish architecture firm 3XN.

Previously its 500 staff was spread across four locations in Lausanne.

IOC President Thomas Bach, flanked by his four vice-presidents and director general Christophe De Kepper, received a ceremonial key to Olympic House after he had cut the ribbon with Ueli Maurer, President of Switzerland.

Bach claimed Olympic House, which opened to the first set of staff last month, would be "the home for the entire Olympic Movement".

"When we set out on this project to construct a home, we wanted it to be more than just another office building.

"Of course, we wanted to bring together everyone, the Olympic family and all IOC staff, under one roof.

"In this sense, the Olympic House is an expression of our unity."

And, as we mentioned, today is Olympic Day:

THURSDAY 20TH JUNE

BLIND PARALYMPIC SKIER HARNESSES NEW TECHNOLOGY

The German skier, Noemi Ristau, has Stargardt disease which has progressively harmed her vision.

She usually races with a guide but is now testing something new.

A cellphone is strapped to her helmet and her guide watches a live feed and issues verbal instructions back from the bottom of the ski slope.

See the video for more:

WEDNESDAY 19TH JUNE

SKIER KILLED ROCKFALL IN CANADA

A 22-year-old man was skiing on the remaining snow near Castle Mountain Resort in Alberta when he was hit.

Two others who were with him on Mount Haig and some passing hikers gave him first aid but he died at the scene.

It has been a described as a freak accident.

Next-of-kin have been informed

Castle Mountain ResortCastle Mountain Resort





















TUESDAY 18TH JUNE

MOUNTAIN FEVER

The Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research in Davos in Switzerland is world-famous for its research in to avalanches.

So, what goes on behind the scenes?

Its research includes everything from observing real avalanches to measuring permafrost levels in the high mountains.

It's used not just to help skiers and snowboarders but also to help engineers and planners decide whether new structures are safe.

Check out this fascinating behind-the-scenes video:


SUNDAY 16TH JUNE

SNOW FROM SPACE

Huge amounts of snow remain in the Rockies in the USA.

The latest image we have comes from an orbiting satellite.

There is a snow/water equivalent of 19cm in the state of Colorado.

This is eight times higher than usual.

In most years the snow/water equivalent drops well below 5cm in June.

This image of Colorado comes from NASA's Aqua Satellite as it passed overhead.

Colorado from spaceColorado from space

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

We have followed the on going ski season as some resorts still offer skiing:

And we have reported recently on the problems caused:

And if you like snowy images from space this comes from high above the Patagonian Icefield in South America.

The icefield covers about 13,000 square kilometers of Chile and Argentina.

It is the largest stretch of ice in the southern hemisphere outside of Antarctica.

The image was taken by NASA's Terra satellite.

South Patagonian IcefieldSouth Patagonian Icefield

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

SATURDAY 15TH JUNE

SURGE IN MOUNTAIN RESCUES IN JAPAN

A record 3,129 people became stranded in mountains in Japan last year.

It was a rise of 18%.

Many were skiers and snowboarders who became lost while backcountry skiing in areas that are off limits.

The increase was seen particularly among foreign residents and visitors.

The Japan Mountain Guides Association said the snow quality in Japan has a good international reputation on travel.

This has meant the number of overseas tourists that come to Japan has risen.

Mountain rescues in JapanMountain rescues in Japan



























FRIDAY 14TH JUNE

RECYCLED PLASTIC TO RESURFACE ZERMATT ROAD

The Swiss resort is taking a green approach to the resurfacing of one of the road junctions used by its electric powered vehicles.

Waste plastic that would otherwise have gone to incineration or landfill is to be used in the asphalt.

The technology comes from the award-winning Scottish firm, MacRebur, and will be installed today, Friday 14th June.

"Temperatures in Zermatt range from below minus 15 in the winter to up to around 30 degrees in summer, however, as our roads contain plastic, they are more flexible," said the CEO of MacRebur, Toby McCartney.

"This means they can cope better with the contraction and expansion caused by changes in the weather, reducing cracks and potholes."

The streets of ZermattThe streets of Zermatt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Switzerland more than 80% of waste plastics are incinerated rather than re-used.

The repaired road will appear no different to regular asphalt.

Other ski resorts and mountain towns will be watching with interest.

THURSDAY 13TH JUNE

DEER VALLEY WANTS OUT OF GWYNETH PALTROW LAW SUIT

A man is suing the US actress after he alleges she crashed into him in the ski resort in Utah.

She is counter suing the man.

The man's lawyers claim that Deer Valley is responsible for the actions of a ski instructor who was with Paltrow at the time in February 2016.

He claims the instructor berated him and didn't call the ski patrol for help.

In a hearing this week the resort claims Deer Valley Resort is not responsible for collisions on the slopes.

The case filed against Paltrow will carry on whatever the court rules about Deer Valley's request to be dismissed.

We have reported on the case in the past here on PlanetSKI:
Gweneth Paltrow on the slopesGwyneth Paltrow on the slopes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


TUESDAY 11TH JUNE

BRITISH BASE JUMPER DIES

A British base jumper has died after an accident in the Val di Fassa in the Dolomites.

According to local media reports, Jean Andrè Quemener from Jersey hit the rocks of a gully after problems with his wingsuit.

It happened at Sass Pordoi at Canazei, a mountain popular with base jumpers at around midday on Saturday.

The alarm was raised by the 31-year-old's German girlfriend who had jumped before him.

His body was later found at the bottom of a canyon.

The Foreign Office says it is supporting the family of a British man following his death in Italy and is in contact with the local authorities.

Sass PordoiSass Pordoi, Italian Dolomites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


MONDAY 10TH JUNE

GLOBAL EXPANSION FOR IKON PASS

Mt Buller in Victoria, Australia is the newest member.

Now, Ikon Pass holders can take advantage of a year-round winter, with access to these resorts, on top of the dozens in the Northern Hemisphere.

So in the Southern Hemisphere IKON now connects:
  • New Zealand: Coronet Peak, The Remarkables, Mt Hutt (2020 Winter Season)
  • New South Wales, Australia: Thredbo (2020 Winter Season)
  • Victoria, Australia. Mt Buller (2019/20 Winter Season)
  • Valle Nevado in Chile
To read more on the IKON Pass, what resorts it includes and how much it costs, check out PlanetSKI's articles:
And here's more on the excellent ski season now underway in Australia and New Zealand:
Fun fact: Mt Buller in Australia is the only place in the world you can ski under the Woolybutt gum trees.

Snow season starts this week...

Mt BullerMt Buller, Australia






























SUNDAY 9TH JUNE

HIKER DIES IN SCOTTISH LIGHTNING STRIKE

55-year old Isobel Bytautus was walking with 6 others Na Gruagaichean, near Ben Nevis, on Saturday when the group was struck by lightning.

Another woman in the group who was also struck by lightning is in a stable condition in hospital in Fort William.

Insp Isla Campbell said: "We are grateful for the prompt and professional response from partner agencies to this tragic incident and offer our condolences to the lady's family."

An investigation is underway.

Na GruagaicheanNa Gruagaichean














SATURDAY 8TH JUNE

£5.5M LOSS FOR FIS

The International Ski Federation reports the loss in its account for 2018.

The main reason is the third and final payment from the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics has not been made.

According to the accounts the first and second payments, amounting to £23.3m, have come through.

The balance with the third and final payment was expected in late March or early April 2019.

FIS has said it has not received the money from the IOC the Pyeongchang 2018 Organising Committee as the committee has not finished its accounting process.

The IOC said that International Federations, including FIS, would receive £169m in total.

THURSDAY 6TH MAY

AIR TRAVEL UPDATE

London's Heathrow airport is investing £50m in computer tomography (CT) scanners.

Once installed, travellers will be able to keep liquids and laptops inside their hand luggage when going through security scanning.

Since 2006 passengers have had to separate their liquids from their carry on bags in plastic bags.

The CT scanners, similar to those used in hopsitals, will show a clear picture of contents of the bag.

"This cutting-edge kit will not only keep the airport safe with the latest technology," commented Heathrow chief operations officer Chris Garton.

"[It] will mean that our future passengers can keep their focus on getting on with their journeys and less time preparing for security screening," Garton finished.

Aviation Minster Baroness Vere stated:

"Passenger safety remains our top priority, and this programme clearly shows the huge importance we place on security."

The new technology will be installed over the next three years.

Heathrow Airport updatesHeathrow Airport updates






















INVESTIGATION INTO RUNNING OF CAIRNGORM

Auditors from the Scottish Government are investigating the running of the ski area by the Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).

They are also questioning the valuation of the failed funicular railway.

The organisation that runs the resort went bust last October following structural problems with the funicular railway.
Other areas being examined include a VAT investigation, its readiness for Brexit and cyber security.

Read more in The Press and Journal.

The findings of the audit investigation are likely to be published in early 2020.

Cairngorm, ScotlandCairngorm, Scotland

























WEDNESDAY 5TH MAY

FEARS ARE RISING FOR MISSING HIKER

A British hiker went missing in New Zealand five days ago on Saturday 1st June.

Hopes are fading of finding him alive, as severe weather conditions challenge rescuers.

49-year-old Briton Darren Myers, who has been living in Wellington, was hiking in the Tararua ranges in the North Island on Saturday.

Conditions become very harsh, however, and more thunderstorms, snow and gale-force winds - with potential tornadoes - are forecast for parts of the North Island today, Wednesday 5th June.

Half-a-metre of snow fell over the weekend and cold temperatures remain.

Tararua Ranges on a fine dayTararua Ranges on a fine day




























Around 50 police, search and rescue, and defence force are out searching for Myers, both on land and by air.

A police statement reads that the search continues “in a limited capacity due to poor weather conditions”.

"An aerial search using a helicopter and infrared technology will be conducted if weather allows," the release states.

Myers' wife, Kim Shaw, last heard from her husband by text message on Thursday 30th May, but she's remaining positive.

"I have been impressed and made to feel at ease by SAR (search and rescue) personnel," Shaw told a local news outlet.

Gusty wind footage in Tararua Range from end of May:



AVALANCHE WARNING WITH A DIFFERENCE

A researcher and keen snowboarder has been developing an avalanche warning system you can wear.

Sabine Prezenski, from the Technical University in Berlin, is reported to be testing a wearable device that will beep, buzz or vibrate.

It will provide general avalanche information based on the terrain and conditions in a given area.

Avalanche in SwitzerlandAvalanche debris

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to a report in Powder magazine the device will collect and store real-time data from other skiers and snowboarders in the area, drone-carried instruments and readings from fixed radar and infrasound monitors.

Powder says Prezenski's project has won some prizes and also received grant funding for field testing.

Read more about it in Powder.

We've been unable to find any detailed information about the system and are not quite sure what we make of it.

Let us know what you think.

TUESDAY 4TH JUNE

STOCKHOLM CLAIMS POLITICAL SUPPORT FOR 2026 WINTER GAMES

Stockholm-Are says Swedish politicians are united behind the bid.

The claims were made after a seminar by the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce looking at the bid.

It followed the IOC's Games' Evaluation Commission report that said Stockholm has not signed the Host City Contract and is therefore not an official host city.

It is up against Milan-Cortina in Italy that is the current favourite.
A statement said rival politicians are "completely united in their support" for the bid and that "they share the same enthusiasm for the benefits the Games will bring to Swedish society".

2026 Winter Olympic candidateLower public support for the Swedish bid

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


MONDAY 3RD JUNE

NEW RULES ON CLIMBING MONT BLANC COME INTO FORCE

People climbing the mountain without having booked a room in one of its shelters now face 2-years in jail plus a €300,000 ($335,000) fine under new rules to limit overcrowding.

Authorities said "huge visitor numbers" on the mountain had led to concerns over "sanitary risks" like water availability and waste disposal problems.

The ban came into effect at the weekend.

We reported on it last summer as it was discussed.

A decree was signed by France's Haute Savoie prefecture on Friday.

The decree was signed on the same day a 25-year-old Slovak climber died after falling 250m on the standard route, known as Route Roya.

There have been numerous public information initiatives to inform people that reaching the summit of western Europe's highest peak is a serious and dangerous undertaking and not just a mountain walk.

The authorities say they have been "ineffective", hence the new rules.

Heading towards the Mt Blanc summitHeading towards the Mt Blanc summit




























SATURDAY 1ST JUNE

SNOW IN SOUTH AMERICA

And we start June's News in Brief with the best news of all - snow news.

Cerro Catedral in Argentina has had 25cm of fresh snowfall.

The resort isn't planning to open just yet, the projected start date is 22nd June.

Looking like winter in Cerro Catedral Looking like winter in Cerro Catedral

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elsewhere on PlanetSKI we are already covering the snow in the southern hemisphere.

Resorts are opening in Australia and final preparations are underway in New Zealand.

REPAIRS TO TWO ROUTES IN THE PEAK DISTRICT

£175,000 comes from the Mend Our Mountains: Make One Million fundraising appeal.

A 1km stretch of the Great Ridge footpath, between Mam Tor and Lose Hill, and various boggy sections of Cut Gate, on the Derwent Moors are to receive funds.

"The support for the Mend Our Mountains: Make One Million campaign for repairing routes in our National Parks has been phenomenal," said Carey Davies, BMC hill walking officer and Mend Our Mountains campaign lead.

"This has very much been a collective effort and I can't thank everyone enough for the support and enthusiasm that has been given to this ambitious, unprecedented project."

Great Ridge footpath, Mam Tor to Lose HillGreat Ridge footpath, Mam Tor to Lose Hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cut GateCut Gate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


NEW BOSS FOR US SKI & SNOWBOARD

Step forward Kipp Nelson.

He succeeds Dexter Paine who has been in the role since 2006.

He has completed a 6-month transition period that helped facilitate the transfer of roles and responsibilities between the two men.

Nelson is a long-time supporter of USSA and a former University of Colorado ski racer.

Kipp NelsonKipp Nelson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"It's such an honour to succeed Dexter Paine who has been a wonderful chair for US Ski and Snowboard," he said.

"His are very big shoes to fill but I am excited about taking on the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

"We have some of the world's best athletes on our roster, we have world-class events here in the US and we have young talent coming through."

AWARD FOR SKI JOURNALIST

The International Ski Federation has given its journalism award to the longtime US Ski & Snowboard communications professional, Tom Kelly.

Kelly was recognised for his longstanding role in the sport as a spokesperson for US athletes and leadership with the FIS Public Relations and Mass Media Committee.

"This was quite an unexpected recognition and very much appreciated," said Kelly.

"I take great pride in the role I have been able to play with FIS through the PR and Mass Media Committee."

The award is presented each year by FIS to journalists and broadcasters around the world.

The award was decided at the annual meeting of the federation in Croatia.

Tom KellyTom Kelly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And the FIS President Gian Franco Kasper is the winner of the United States Sports Academy's 2018 Eagle Award.

The award was presented to Kasper by EU Business School President and USSA representative Dr. Dirk Craen in Interlaken.

Craen and KasperCraen and Kasper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Eagle Award is presented annually to a world leader in sport to recognise contributions in promoting international harmony, peace, and goodwill through the effective use of sport.

The recipient of this award must have tempered strength with keen judgment in using authority wisely.

Kasper began his career with FIS in 1975 as director and became the organisation's secretary general in 1979.

He was elected president in 1998.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: Number One for ski news

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