FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:London-listed power generator ContourGlobal has halted plans to build a 500 megawatt coal-fired power plant in Kosovo, and said it will make no further coal plant investments.The project would have provided around half of the electricity demand of the Balkan country which is struggling with power shortages.“We will not develop or acquire coal power plants in the future,” the company said in its full-year results statement on Tuesday.ContourGlobal, which operates more than 100 power plants across Europe, Latin America and Africa, reported a 15.2% rise in annual adjusted core earnings as it benefited from the sale of a 49% stake in a portfolio of Spanish solar power assets.Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose to $703 million, for year ended Dec. 31, from $610 million it reported last year. ContourGlobal in December had warned that it expects full-year EBITDA to be below its prior expectation of between $720-770 million.[Susanna Twidale, Samantha Machado, Shanima A]More: ContourGlobal halts plans to build Kosovo coal plant ContourGlobal pulls the plug on planned 500MW coal plant in Kosovo
Japanese firms win contract for $2 billion, 1,250MW LNG-fired power plant in Myanmar FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Nikkei Asian Review:Trading houses Marubeni, Sumitomo Corp. and Mitsui & Co. will build a liquefied natural gas-fired power plant in Myanmar, one of the biggest investments by Japanese companies in the Southeast Asian country, people familiar with the matter say.The three companies estimate total investment in the project at $1.5 billion to $2 billion. The plant is expected to start operating by 2025 with a capacity equal to about 20% of Myanmar’s existing power plants.Demand for LNG power is expected to grow in Southeast Asia as a low-emission alternative to cheap coal. Marubeni, Sumitomo, and Mitsui expect the project in Myanmar to help them expand their power businesses in the region.In Myanmar, electricity demand has been growing at a rate of 10% to 20% a year with industrialization and the electrification of farming villages. Frequent power outages have posed an obstacle to the country’s goal of attracting foreign investment in manufacturing.The plant will be built in a suburb of Yangon, Myanmar’s commercial capital and most populous city. The three companies will operate it through a joint venture they will establish with Eden Group, a local conglomerate whose businesses include real estate and agriculture.The plant will have a generating capacity of 1,250 megawatts — about as much as one nuclear reactor. Myanmar’s existing power generation capacity is about 6,000 megawatts, according to the country’s Ministry of Electricity and Energy.[Yuichi Nitta and Yusuke Tanaka]More: Japan Marubeni wins deal for $2bn Myanmar LNG power plant
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享South China Morning Post:China risks being left behind as South Korea and Japan signal a shift away from financing overseas coal power in response to growing criticism over their support for the dirty fossil fuel.The three countries are the top global lenders for coal energy infrastructure, bankrolling projects beyond their borders through export credit agencies and developing new markets to export coal plant technology. But there are signs that Japan and South Korea may be preparing to scale back official support amid mounting pressure from the public and investors on environmental grounds.Japan announced last month that it would tighten funding criteria for foreign coal-fired power plants, and next month South Korean lawmakers will debate several bills aimed at banning overseas coal investment as part of a post-coronavirus “Green New Deal”.“This is profoundly serious, because it is an acceleration of a trend that is already established in global financial markets,” said Melissa Brown, the director of energy finance studies, Asia, at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. “It has a very strong economic foundation, which is that – based on virtually all of the coherent and credible evidence we have today – coal-fired power facilities that are brought into service in the next five years are extremely unlikely to have a productive, profitable economic life.”China has an outsize impact on development financing for coal. From 2000-2019, its two global policy banks – the China Development Bank and the Export-Import Bank of China – issued loans totaling US$51.8 billion for coal energy projects around the world, according to the Global Development Policy Centre at Boston University.In comparison, Japan spent US$26 billion financing 36 overseas coal-fired power plants between January 2003 and April 2019, the Japan Centre for a Sustainable Environment and Society estimated. South Korean public financial institutions, meanwhile, supported 24 overseas coal projects with US$10 billion from 2008 to 2018, according to Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC), a Seoul-based non-profit organisation.[Harry Pearl]More: China slow to curb coal financing as Japan, South Korea ‘accept new reality’ on phasing out fossil fuels Experts see growing stranded asset threat for China’s continued coal plant financing
Global installed solar capacity tops wind for first time in latest BNEF data FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Recharge:Solar energy stormed ahead last year to become the leading new power-generating source in the world, carrying clean-energy technologies including wind and hydro to overtake coal in global installed capacity, according to latest calculations by research consultancy BloombergNEF (BNEF).PV added 118GW of new plant in 2019 on its way to reaching 651GW of capacity, outpacing wind’s total 644GW, to become the fourth largest power source on the planet, behind coal’s 2.1TW, gas’ 1.8TW and hydro’s 1.2TW.Solar and wind together accounted for 67% of new capacity added globally in 2019, while fossil fuels slid to 25%, according to BNEF’s new Power Transition Trends 2020 report, which tracks capacity and generation data over the past decade. Taken together with hydro dams, the clean-energy sector has built out some 2.5TW of plant worldwide.“Sharp declines in solar equipment costs, namely the modules that go on rooftops and in fields, have made this technology widely available for homes, businesses and grids,” said Luiza Demôro, BNEF analyst and lead author of the study. “PV is now truly ubiquitous and a worldwide phenomenon.”PV eclipsed all-comers in new-build terms and was the most popular technology deployed in 33% of nations, with 81 countries building at least 1MW of solar during the last calendar year and representing nearly half of all new power generation capacity constructed worldwide.Renewable-energy engines wind and solar totted up to over two-thirds of the 265GW of additional capacity deployed worldwide in 2019, up from less than a quarter of new plant in 2010, while for the first time the two technologies accounted for the majority of new generation recorded.[Darius Snieckus]More: Solar outshines wind to become world’s biggest new power source: BNEF
The beauty of bouldering? A little bit of gear goes a long way. Stock these key items and you’ll be set to work problems all over the Southern Appalachians this fall.1. Black Diamond Mondo Pad It’s the most expensive piece of the bouldering pie, but there’s a reason: falling on the ground hurts. Falling on a crash pad hurts less. If you’re only getting one pad, look for a pad with five inches of foam to protect you from higher falls. The Mondo has three inches of high-compression foam wrapped in two inches of closed-cell foam. The coverage is solid, the fabric is a sturdy 1000d nylon, and it comes with the standard shoulder straps for easy transport. It ain’t cheap, but most insurance policies aren’t, either. $349. blackdiamondequipment.com2. Scarpa Vapor V The suede and Lorica upper make the shoe stretchy, so it’s a bit more comfortable than its lace-up counterpart, but make no mistake, this is a technical shoe built to give you sure feet on the rock. We dig the Velcro “power straps” which make putting the shoe on a cinch and also provide a bit more support, which is key when your entire body weight is balanced on the inside edge of your right foot. $139. scarpa.com3. Patagonia Merino 2 Lightweight Zip It’s stretchy, it’s made from cute sheep wool and recycled polyester, it’s warm, it breathes…it’s got fall bouldering written all over it. $80. patagonia.com 4. The North Face Cliff Rock Crag Pants These durable-but-stretchy canvas pants protect your stems but don’t limit your mobility when you’ve got a high-knee move. $55. thenorthface.com6. Metolius Techno Chalk Bag This pouch has all the chalk bag standards, plus a zippered phone/mp3 pocket. It comes with a belt so you won’t forget the bag when you leave the gym or boulder field. $25. metoliusclimbing.comWringer: Five Ten Warhawk Approach ShoeFirst, realize this: approach shoes aren’t designed to climb rock. The optimist would say approach shoes are designed to provide traction over rocky terrain on the way to the crag. The cynic would say the approach shoe is a made-up category designed to make you buy another set of shoes. At their worst, approach shoes are hiking boots that aren’t as comfortable as your light hikers and not nearly as grippy as your climbing shoes. But find an approach shoe that’s comfortable to hike in and can actually send rock when you need it to, and you’ve got something. The Warhawk is that something.The shoe is stripped of the typical approach shoe bulk, then souped up with the new Stealth MI:6 rubber, a tread designed to help Tom Cruise scale glass in the latest Mission Impossible installment. The narrow toe-box and grippy rubber give the Warhawk a climbing shoe feel, but the shoe is light and cush enough to hike for miles in perfect comfort.I spent several gym and bouldering sessions with the Warhawk and only occasionally felt limited by the shoes on my feet. Even though the tread lacks the sensitivity of a climbing shoe, the Warhawk still smears well, which is key on our sloping Southern granite. And it edges better than most other approach shoes I’ve tested. Better climbers than myself have claimed 5.11 routes in these shoes. Your average climber will simply dig the versatility. The Warhawk is a true hybrid that performs well on the hike to the crag, monkeying around on boulders at the campsite, scrambling on class IV scree…the flat sole and sticky rubber even stuck beautifully to the flat pedals on my singlespeed. $95. fiveten.com
JAMES RIVERmilepost 63.9 Virginians have used the James River for so many utilitarian things that the river may not automatically come to mind when you’re looking for a swimming hole. But the section high in the Blue Ridge adjacent to the Parkway offers a variety of swimming hole goodies. A.T. hikers and locals have been known to jump from the James River Footbridge into the James’ depths, while more casual swimmers will enjoy floating a section of the river that parallels the Appalachian Trail below the bridge. If you’re really aggressive, you can hike the A.T. all the way to Matt’s Creek Shelter, where you’ll find more secluded, but smaller swimming holes on this tributary of the James.Jump In: Leaping from the James River Footbridge has become a rite of passage for A.T. thru-hikers. Couple an exhilarating jump with a sublime float downriver on an inner tube, and you’ve gotthe makings of a perfectsummer afternoon.DirectionsExit the parkway at milepost 63.9, then go west on Highway 501 for four miles, crossing the James. Park in the large A.T. parking area, and find the A.T. as it crosses the river via an old rail line that’s been converted to a footbridge.ARNOLD VALLEY POOLeast fork Elk Creekmilepost 71It’s hard to imagine a swimming hole prettier than the Arnold Valley Pool. Massive gray boulders surround the swimming hole on three sides, while a five-foot waterfall funnels the East Fork Elk into the deeper water. Some people slide the falls into the pool, and occasionally, you can find a rope swing dangling from a branch. Be careful of jumping, though, as rocks tend to lurk beneath the surface.DirectionsFrom Petite’s Gap on the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 71, drive west on the unmarked Forest Service Road 35, which twists down the mountain for several miles. Park right before the second small bridge over East Fork Elk. •Whee! Check out video and photos of cliff jumping at some of the Parkway’s best swimming holes here. The Blue Ridge Parkway is not just America’s most scenic mountain road; it’s also America’s longest trailhead. For 469 miles, the Blue Ridge Parkway follows the ridgeline of the Southern Appalachians, connecting Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina with Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park. Along that stretch of two-lane blacktop are countless trails and backroads, some of which lead to ice-cold swimming holes. We’ve rounded up the best of these watery destinations scattered along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Strap on the water shoes and take a Parkway plunge.HAZEL RIVER FALLSHazel Riverskyline drive, milepost 33-34Hazel River Falls is a 30-foot falls cutting through the heart of a small, mossy cliffline. The pool isn’t huge or particularly deep, so jumping is out of the question, but the water is cold, crystal clear, and surrounded by a lush forest. The falls is actually split into two separate drops. Lower Hazel has a deeper swimming pool, while Upper Hazel sits next to a rock overhang that creates a natural shelter with a small cave ready to explore.DirectionsFrom Meadow Springs Parking Area on Skyline Drive between milepost 33 and 34, take the yellow blazed Hazel Mountain Trail, then go left on White Rocks Trail for .8 miles, where an unmarked trail will lead down to the Hazel River.RIP RAP HOLLOWskyline drive, milepost 90 Shenandoah National Park is full of swimming holes, and Rip Rap is one of the largest. You’re looking at a 3.5-mile hike to reach the ice-cold, 50-foot-wide hole, but remember: the longer the hike, the smaller the crowds. You’ll pass a 20-foot waterfall along the way, but the good swimming is further down where the trail crosses the creek. Rip Rap is a calm, greenish blue pool with a trickling rock slide feeding it. The hike alone is worth the effort; you’ll pass breathtaking waterfalls, mountain creeks, and cliffs.DirectionsPark at the Rip Rap trail parking, at milepost 90 along Skyline Drive. Take the A.T. for half a mile to the blue blazed Rip Rap Trail, then follow the trail for three miles as it drops in elevation.Hole Lotta Splash: The swimming hole in Shenandoah National Park’s White Oak Canyon is one of the hottest spots to cool off on summer weekends. To reach the swimming hole, park at the Cedar Run Trailhead along Skyline Drive and hike 1.7 miles to the falls. CAMPBELL CREEK GORGECampbell Creekmilepost 13.5The Mau-Har Trail is one of the Appalachian Trail’s blue-blazed side hikes that has become almost mandatory for thru-hikers because of its stunning beauty. The trail is steep and rugged, but passes through the Campbell Creek Gorge, which is packed with cascades and wading pools. The highlight of the gorge may be the 40-foot Campbell Creek Falls, but another, shorter falls farther down the gorge has better swimming. It drops over a rock ledge into a wide pool with good camping nearby. DirectionsPark at Reeds Gap at milepost 13.5. Take the A.T. south for 1.6 miles, then the blue-blazed Mau-Har Trail for two miles to the gorge.PANTHER FALLSPedlar Rivermilepost 46 It’s important not to wonder how Panther Falls got its name. Instead, focus on perfecting your cannonball. This small waterfall on the Pedlar River is flanked by two massive boulders ideal for jumping. The deep pool fed by the falls is almost completely surrounded by rock. Three potholes can be found above the falls, along with connected gentle slides. Soaking in one of the refreshingly frigid and smooth tubs can be a sublime juxtaposition to the adrenaline rush of rock jumping. DirectionsFrom the Parkway, go east on Highway 60, then take a quick right on Panther Falls Road and go for four miles. Park in the lot on the left and take the obvious hike down to the falls.STATON CREEK FALLSPedlar Rivermilepost 46Staton Creek Falls may not have the dramatic, vertical drop of other waterfalls in the Southern Appalachians, but it does have what every swimmer is looking for: options. This falls is actually a collection of separate cascades spanning 150 feet, most of which have their own distinct swimming holes beneath them. The largest pool sits at the bottom of the last 50-foot falls, there’s a deeper but smaller pool beneath the top cascade, and a lonely pothole sits in the middle, fed by the second cascade. The water tumbles over slick rocks, so footing is precarious at best.DirectionsFrom milepost 46, drive east on Highway 60, then north on Highway 605 for under two miles, then right on Highway 833 for one mile to the parking area at the falls.Lazy Days of Summer: Let the water do the work. Float the James River as it rolls through Shenandoah Valley. HUNT FISH FALLSWilson Creekmilepost 311.1 The Wilson Creek area of North Carolina’s High Country is littered with falling water. There are so many options that it’s hard to pick one to highlight. We like Hunt Fish for its sheer beauty and swimming potential. Three wide and deep holes are separated by two 10-foot waterfalls: the first is a sheer vertical drop, and the second is a gradual slide. Squat granite cliffs line one side of the river and flat slabs perfect for sunbathing occupy the other. Swim, slide, sunbathe…Hunt Fish has it all. DirectionsTake the Parkway to Old Jonas Road at mile marker 311.1. Follow the gravel road as it drops from the parkway for two miles, then take FS 464 to the left for six miles (passing a church along the way) to the valley floor. A parking lot on your left with a sign saying “Hunt Fish Falls” marks the spot. It’s a one-mile hike on trail 263 to the swimming hole.DUGGERS CREED FALLSDuggers Creekmilepost 316.4Forget about swimming laps at Duggers Creek Falls. This is more of a shower/soak than a swim. But the falls is such a neat pocket of water, it’s worth a trip. The 15-foot Duggers Creek Falls drops into a skinny, mossy slot canyon, forming a shallow pool sandwiched by sheer rock walls. An easy trail passes within view of the falls, but the slot canyon is so unique, it begs closer inspection. DirectionsAt mile post 316.4, take Linville Falls Road to the Linville Falls visitor center. The easy, half-mile Duggers Creek Trail starts in the parking lot and leads to the falls.CAROLINA HEMLOCKSSouth Toe Rivermilepost 344This could be the most family-friendly swimming hole on the Parkway. The South Toe River falls off Mount Mitchell, starting as a skinny mountain stream, then widening in the valley where Carolina Hemlocks Recreation Area is located. The swimming hole sits on the edge of a campground and developed recreation area complete with a sandy beach. Large boulders and slabs line one side of the river, begging for relaxation, while a half-mile tubing run through chutes and slides keeps families entertained. There’s also a 15-foot deep pool for laps, and short rocks for jumping. DirectionsFrom milepost 344, take Highway 80 north for 5.5 miles to the Carolina Hemlocks Campground.WHALEBACKDavidson Rivermilepost 412Most people in this neck of the woods will head straight to Sliding Rock or Looking Glass Falls, but the locals go to Whaleback on the Davidson River above the fish hatchery. A massive slab of bedrock forms a horseshoe around a deep swimming hole. A small cascade tumbles into the green pool, which is surrounded by a lush hardwood forest. The pool—20 feet wide and twice as long—marks the spot where Cove Creek meets the Davidson River. Crowds are nonexistent during the week and minimal on weekends. DirectionsAt milepost 412, take Highway 276 south for several miles. Turn right on Forest Service Road 475. In three miles, park at the Cove Creek Group Camp and follow the obvious trail to Whaleback.GRAVEYARD FIELDSYellowstone Prongmilepost 419Directly adjacent to the Parkway, the Yellowstone Prong flows through a high-elevation valley that was decimated in the 1920s by extensive logging and a 25,000-acre wildfire. Today, blueberry and blackberry bushes dominate the landscape surrounding the trout stream. Graveyard Fields is one of the most popular destinations on the Parkway, but the three waterfalls on the Yellowstone Prong within the fields are worth the crowds. Second Falls is the easiest to get to, most crowded, and has the best swimming hole. Boulders line the base of the 70-foot falls, creating a picturesque pool. Hike downstream to Yellowstone Falls—a 100-foot slide—or trek 1.5 miles upstream to Upper Falls for more privacy.DirectionsGraveyard Fields is located next to the Parkway at milepost 418.8. Take the obvious trail from the parking area leading to Second Falls.FLAT LAUREL CREEKBlack Balsammilepost 420If the falls at Yellowstone Prong are too crowded for you, find one all to yourself on the Flat Laurel Creek. Flat Laurel Creek Falls is a half-mile series of cascades with a variety of plunge pools adjacent to the Flat Laurel Creek Trail, but more pools can be found if you’re willing to scramble and bushwhack down steep slopes. For the adventurous, long cascading waterfalls with shallow, but picturesque pools await. DirectionsAt milepost 420, take the paved Forest Service Road 816 to the Black Balsam Parking Lot and pick up Flat Laurel Creek which will drop 600 feet in 3.7 miles to Highway 215. •We have even more Southern Swimming Holes to tell you about!
As you’ve probably noticed, today is Presidents Day, that highly anticipated yearly event when banks and post offices shut down while your place of employment always seems to remain open.If you’re stuck in the office wishing you could be out in the streets whooping it up for George Washington, or whatever it is one does to celebrate Presidents Day, take a second to read about 5 U.S. Presidents who have made their mark on the world of outdoor recreation.Theodore Roosevelt: The Cowboy ConservationistNo discussion of outdoor-loving presidents would be complete without mention of Teddy Roosevelt. This guy’s penchant for rugged outdoor activity was truly remarkable. He first meandered onto the western landscape in his younger days, with hopes of hunting bison, and eventually found himself running a small cattle ranching operation in North Dakota.Unlike many of his peers, who traveled West only to exploit the land for their own financial gain, Roosevelt saw the inherent value it had to offer a nation that was rapidly growing but still in its infancy. His early years out West were dominated by hunting trips and cattle drives, but once he saw the havoc that unregulated hunting and ranching was wreaking on the landscape, his thirst for adventure gave way to a desire to help preserve the beauty of the West forever.To this day, few presidents can claim a conservation legacy as profound as the one left by Theodore Roosevelt. In addition to creating the U.S. Forest Service and designating 150 national forests, the Roosevelt administration produced 4 national game preserves, 5 national parks and 18 national monuments.To this day, Roosevelt is considered the father of the modern conservation movement.Gerald Ford: Yellowstone Park RangerLong before Gerald R. Ford was keeping American entertained with an epic highlight reel of presidential bloopers, he was holding it down as a park ranger in the Canyon Ranger District of Yellowstone National Park.Still the only POTUS to have actively served as an NPS ranger, Ford enjoyed the distinguished title of ‘armed guard’ on one of Canyon’s bear feeding trucks.In addition to contributing to the dangerous habituation of Yellowstone grizzlies, Ford handled meet and greets for important park visitors. Years later he would call his brief stint as an NPS ranger one of the greatest summers of his life.Jimmy Carter: Paddler, Fly Fisherman and Environmental Stalwart According to a New York Times article from 1994, former Georgia peanut farmer Jimmy Carter was far and away the most skilled fly fisherman to ever occupy the Oval Office.“Since taking up the sport in the early 1970’s on Georgia’s Chattahoochee River, Carter has passed the big tests of casting a clean line,” the article reads, “taking heavy trout on fine tippets, and tying flies that can stand close inspection.”Carter didn’t stop at fly fishing. He also enjoyed paddling the many whitewater tributaries of the North Georgia mountains, famously braving the class IV rapids of the Chattooga while lobbying for the river’s protection as a wild and scenic waterway during his tenure as governor.During his single term as president Carter kept a steady eye on environmental issues, implementing the Soil and Water Conservation Act, the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, the Antarctic Conservation Act, and the Endangered American Wilderness Act.Herbert Hoover: Master of the RapidanHerbert Hoover is probably best known for presiding over the worst financial collapse in the history of the civilized world, but man could he cast a mean dry fly.It’s said that Hoover, who honed his fly fishing skills on Virginia’s Rapidan River, turned to fishing as a respite from the demanding rigors of life in the public eye.Hoover himself famously claimed that “there are only two occasions when Americans respect privacy, especially in Presidents. Those are prayer and fishing.”He was what we call in today’s terms a “fly fishing purist” or “trout snob”, whichever you prefer.In an interview with the National Park Service, Pete Hoover, the grandson of the 31st President, recalled Hoover saying “that really there’s only one kind of fishing and that’s trout fishing in streams.”Barack Obama: Bear Grylls-trained Survivalist and Environmental Conservationist Okay, that’s not a recognized certification of any kind, and our 44th President isn’t really known for his outdoor prowess. But hey, he dined on half-eaten salmon with Bear Grylls in Seward, Alaska. How could I leave him off the list?He also preserved 260 million acres of land for future generations, more than any of his predecessors, by designating 19 national monuments.Related:
“Extreme” and “epic” are common adjectives in our daily speech. We strive to conquer the highest peaks, pedal the steepest singletracks, and do it faster and better than those who came before us.To you we say, welcome to Virginia’s Blue Ridge!Adrenaline junkies bent on one-upmanship will thrive on and around the mountains surrounding Roanoke, voted a Best Trail Town, Top Adventure Town, and Best Mountain Town. Head to Virginia’s Blue Ridge and create an epic outdoor adventure.Hiking Virginia’s Triple CrownWhile the Appalachian Trail is a bucket list item unto itself, Virginia’s Triple Crown is another. Pair the two together for an unforgettable 32-mile loop in Virginia’s Blue Ridge.A steep and not simple 2.3 miles from Route 311 delivers willing hikers to Dragon’s Tooth. The jagged quartzite jutting 35 feet into the air is the geologic formation you’re bound for. Climb on up and enjoy the view.From Dragon’s Tooth, it’s a 7.5-mile hike to reach the McAfee Knob parking lot. Continue another 4.4 miles to reach the wide open view that awaits at the Knob. There are two shelters between Dragon’s Tooth and McAfee Knob to set up camp for the night.Tinker Cliffs is 5.5 miles on the Appalachian Trail from McAfee Knob and two additional shelters are available between the destinations. To close the loop, refer to the Triple Crown map.Mountain Biking at Carvins CoveMore than 60 miles of trails weave through Carvins Cove Natural Area Reserve, but thrill-seekers are most interested in just under five miles of those 60: Rattlin’ Run and The Gauntlet. These two trails are rated “Extremely Difficult,” which means only a talented two-wheeler like yourself should speed, hop, and climb along these weaving, rocky paths. [Trail Map]Hiking the Peaks of Otter – Sharp Top & Flat Top MountainsThe two toughest trails at Peaks of Otter at Sharp Top and Flat Top Mountains. Located at milepost 86 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Peaks are known for their outstanding views, as well as their difficulty. To conquer both, allow a full day and be ready for more than 1,600 feet of elevation gain along the nearly 10 miles of trails. [Trail Map]Cycling on the Blue Ridge ParkwayA 70-mile out-and-back from Mill Mountain in Roanoke (milepost 120) to Peaks of Otter (milepost 86) is both stunning and serious. The route offers steep climbs, thrilling downhill sections, and stunning views from all angles.Fly Fishing on the Roanoke RiverThe Roanoke River is teeming with varieties of bass, trout and more. Bigger sport-sized fish are found closer to Smith Mountain Lake where the river widens and runs deeper. Expect to pull in catfish and striped bass in this portion of the river. The banks of the Roanoke River Gorge near Rutrough Point in Explore Park are another great spot to put in.Check out the Outdoor Adventure section of www.visitvbr.com to begin planning your epic Blue Ridge Day.
Spend the night, the week, or the month at The Lofts at Downtown Salem. These historically renovated one-bedroom apartments are fully furnished, tastefully decorated, and just a short walk to all the amenities the downtown has to offer. Fuel Up Hidden Gems Swing by the Salem Farmers Market on Saturdays for local produce and delicious sweets. Outside of the pandemic, the market is a local hub for concerts, craft fairs, and other public events, including the lighting of the city Christmas tree. If you prefer to get outside and paddle, the Roanoke River Blueway provides a variety of adventures on the water. With multiple public access points, customize your trip through urban centers and backcountry spots. Canoe, kayak, fish, tube, or wade into the river as you take in the sights and sounds of the region. The Roanoke River Greenway provides a paved path along the river for walkers, runners, and bikers alike. With nearly 60 miles of trails, Carvins Cove is one of the best places on the East Coast for mountain biking. Whether you prefer cross country singletrack, downhill, or fire roads, there’s something for riders of all abilities. Cool off with a paddle on the 630-acre reservoir. Located less than ten miles from Salem, Carvins Cove is close enough to easily bike back into town for a meal or a drink. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a treat from a few Salem favorites. Corbin’s Confections offers nut and gluten-free baked goods, like pies, bread, and cake pops. The Dilly Dally has something for every season, from ice cream and cupcakes to Virginia produced products and nightcrawlers for fishermen. Experience WanderLove for yourself when you visit Salem, Va. In this national historic district, you’ll find a relaxing getaway with an abundance of outdoor recreational opportunities. Discover the best spots to play, eat, and stay in this guide to Salem. Take a photo with the LOVE sign as it travels around the community. You can currently find the sign at the Salem Public Library. The peace sign in the “O” represents Salem, which is derived from the Hebrew word Shalom meaning peace, wholeness, harmony, and tranquility. Bordered by the mountains with the Roanoke River running through town, there’s an adventure waiting for you around every corner of Salem. Hike the Triple Crown, a section of the Appalachian Trail, for the best views of the Roanoke Valley. Along the way, you’ll find challenging terrain, overlooks where you can see for miles, and unique rock formations for bouldering. End your day at one of the breweries in Salem for a brew crafted in the mountains. From pilsners and sours to IPAs and hard seltzers, Olde Salem Brewing Company has a drink for everyone. Buy a craft beer by the pint or growler from Parkway Brewery Company, and keep an eye out for future events featuring live music and food trucks. Go Outside and Play WanderLove is about reconnecting with what you love. Experience the Blue Ridge Mountains, a charming downtown, and all of the winding roads in between when you road trip through Salem, Va. LOVEworks Please check local guidelines and regulations before making plans to get outside. Remember to practice social distancing guidelines, wear a mask, and respect others’ health when outside. Find a place downtown for lunch and dinner. For casual family dining, Mac and Bob’s serves everything from 100 craft beers to the largest calzones around. Savor a taste of modern cocktails and cuisine in an elegant atmosphere at Blue Apron Restaurant & Red Rooster Bar. Stocked with 85 different tequilas, El Jefe Taqueria Garaje is an eclectic taqueria serving simple, fresh tacos and signature drinks. Relax and Unwind
By Dialogo April 07, 2009 Brazilian police arrested 200 people including 23 teenagers as part of a wide-ranging operation to reduce the incidence of violence in and around this capital, authorities said. The operation, dubbed “Alvorada 4,” has 900 agents taking part and plans to execute 300 outstanding arrest warrants. Most of those arrested are suspected of such crimes as homicide, robbery and rape, the police said in a communique. Aside from Brasilia in the Federal District, arrests were also made in the neighboring states of Goias and Minas Gerais with the collaboration of regional police forces. Police said they hope for a “noteworthy reduction of crime” in the area of the Brazilian capital after this operation. The first three Alvorada operations, with similar objectives to the one carried out Tuesday, succeeded in arresting a total of 158 people beginning in March last year. Brasilia is one of the cities in Brazil with the highest incidence of violence. Nonetheless, the so-called “satellite cities” surrounding Brasilia in the Federal District with their nearly 3 million inhabitants living in poverty have seen an escalation of violence in recent years. The region is considered one of the 11 most violent metropolitan areas in the country, and has consequently been included in the initial phase of the National Public Safety Program, launched in 2007 by the Brazilian government, which seeks to control the problem of violence. This program contemplates an increase in the number of police officers, giving them better training and implementing social measures in the shantytowns that surround Brazil’s major cities, where the violence problem is at its worst.