Snowmelt gathers in Red Creek, which flows through the heart of the Dolly Sods Wilderness. Photo: Ludovic Moore of AKA Flash PhotographyPerched high upon the Allegheny Plateau at 4,000 feet, Dolly Sods offers sweeping, Canadian-esque vistas and a destination that is (for most non-Nova Scotians) seemingly out of this world. The Dolly Sods Wilderness is populated by fields of cranberries, blueberries, and huckleberries, rhododendron, hardwood forests, marshy bogs, open grassy sods strewn with large boulders, and stunted and flagged red spruce trees gnarled from the strong winds of the high plains.The ‘sods’ refer to the large open fields which were once used for grazing and blueberry harvesting by the Dollys, or Dahles, German descendents of Johann Dahle, who settled the area in the 1780s after deserting the British Colonists. Hence the name, Dolly Sods.Here are three winter-worthy adventures in the Sods:1. Snow cave camping in northern Dolly SodsYou can backcountry camp anywhere in the Sods, so long as you are 100 yards away from the road. Our favorite spot is the Upper Red Creek Trail. Because of high winds and snowfall, Dolly Sods has many snowdrifts. Dig into the lee side of a drift, and you can dig a snow cave, complete with a kitchen and multiple bedrooms.“It takes a while to dig a snow cave, and you get a little bit wet, but once you get in your snow castle, it’s worth it,” says Chip Chase, owner of White Grass Ski Area.Head to Timberline Ski Resort, grab a one-way pass and take the lift up to Salamander Run, or ski-hike up from the bottom. Head to the large, sharp curve known as Governor’s Turn, and from there, a trail will head east for a short 150-foot jaunt through the woods that will drop you at a four-way trail junction in the Dolly Sods Wilderness. Take Blackbird Knob trail a few miles east to Upper Red Creek Trail. Through the midsection of Upper Red Creek Trail strong winds carve out incredible snowdrifts that can be ideal for snowcave camping as late as into the spring skiing season.2. Cross-country ski Breathed Mountain TrailAlong Breathed Mountain Trail you’ll see gorgeous sections of lush green forests scattered among wide open plains and boulder fields left behind from the glacial era. With enough snow these large boulders will be buried in the snow so you can ski right over them. Keep your eyes peeled for the rare snowshoe hare.3. Snowshoe Red Creek TrailThe southern portion of Dolly Sods is more thickly wooded, allowing the snow to be protected from the harsher winds of the open sods. From Dry Fork on Lanesville Road, take the Red Creek Trail north to the Fisher Spring Trail. These two trails weave through thick Red Spruce forests dotted by occasional open mountain meadows. They often cross the (hopefully) frozen Red Creek.Cold TruthsBring a scraper for your skis. With the many creek crossings, they are likely to get wet and freeze up.Exploring the Sods in winter is best after the snow has accumulated and hardened for a few days, allowing you to stay up on top of it easily. Even more ideal is immediately after a fresh snowfall later in winter, allowing for fluffier snow to accumulate on top of the already established base layer.The Dolly Sods is a federally designated wilderness. It is likely you won’t see other people, cell phone service is spotty, and the trails are often not marked or blazed at all.An area trail map is an absolute must: Try wvhighlands.org for some printable maps. You can also get maps at the U.S. Forest Service in Elkins and the Potomac Ranger Station in Petersburg.Nearby Winter WonderlandsCanaan Valley State Park is right next to the Dolly Sods Wilderness and offers an equally impressive yet distinctly different geography laced with trails and adventure.Blackwater Falls lies just to the north, spilling its tannin-colored waters powerfully over the edge of the rocks–a sight that has attracted people for centuries.Dolly Sods is bordered by Timberline Ski Resort as well as White Grass Ski Area, a cross-country ski playland.
June 6, 2020 Saturday’s racing, with no fans in attendance, marked the first professional sports action in the Toronto area since March 10, when the Maple Leafs beat the Tampa Bay Lightning. A total of 11 races ran at Woodbine with 118 entries. Racing had been scheduled to begin at Woodbine on April 18.Before the first race, jockeys all took a knee in support of anti-racism protests around the world following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.British-born jockey Darryll P. Holland rode 14-1 longshot Majestic Fever to victory in the day’s first race.Fairywren, ridden by Luis Contreras, won the feature event, a $123,300 maiden on the turf course. Holland rode Candy’s Dream, a 49-1 longshot, to second place in that race.___ Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal were among the clubs who stepped up their preparations for the Premier League’s return by holding practice matches on Saturday.Clubs are attempting to build up players’ fitness before the league resumes on June 17 following a 100-day suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.The league also announced Saturday that the sixth round of COVID-19 testing of 1,195 players and staff across the 20 clubs on Thursday and Friday produced no positives. Arsenal, which will be in action on the first night back away to Manchester City, hosted second-tier side Charlton at the Emirates Stadium. Eddie Nketiah scored a hat trick in a 6-0 win for the Gunners.Manchester United, which plays Tottenham in its Premier League return on June 19, staged a game between members of the first-team squad at Old Trafford on Saturday. ___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6 Associated Press Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___Thoroughbred racing has resumed at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto after a seven-week delay because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Latest: Racing resumes at Woodbine in Toronto
160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! MOSCOW – A Russian airliner came down short of a runway in heavy fog Saturday, bouncing and then flipping onto its back. Six people were killed and 26 injured, the government said. Prosecutors investigating the crash in the central Russian city of Samara said bad weather and pilot error were the most likely causes. The plane was a Tu-134 passenger jet owned by Russian airline UTAir. Experts say the aging Tu-134, the workhorse of Russian civil aviation, is harder to land than more modern aircraft, especially in bad weather. Transport officials have ordered the planes gradually phased out because of that and other problems. The plane, carrying 50 passengers and seven crew, was en route from the Siberian city of Surgut to the western city of Belgorod with a stop in Samara, a city on the Volga river, about 550 miles southeast of Moscow. The Emergency Situations Ministry Web site listed six people killed in the crash and 26 who were hospitalized with injuries. After the crash, the plane’s wrecked fuselage lay on thick snow yards from the landing strip, its wings, tail and engine scattered about as rescuers worked to evacuate surviving victims and remove the bodies of the dead as police searched for clues. Yuri Naryshkin, a spokesman for regional emergency authorities, told NTV television the plane touched down before the landing strip, then overturned. Prosecutors probing the crash said in an official statement that the plane touched down about 400 yards short of the landing strip.