Category Archives: Environment

Group Seeks Black Mountain Trail as Huge ATV Park Opens

The New York Times devoted nearly a page its Automobile section in its Dec. 17, 2004, issue for photos, maps, and reports that a group of ATV riders is pushing for a trail from Evarts to the Black Mountain summit.

Preston McLain, president of the Harlan County Ridgerunners is quoted as saying, “You’ll be able to ride from Evarts to the highest point in the state. That’s the goal. And the ride is free. That’s the way the county wants it. Say it’s to promote tourism.”
The article notes that Harlan County has become a destination for ATV riders. Harlan County is in the process of establishing a huge ATV Park. The off-road park won’t officially open until June, timed to the annual Poke Salad Festival, but local groups are already working to prepare the land. The Ridge Runners share the property with the Kentucky Mountain Crawlers, a local rock-crawling club, and both groups spend weekends clearing brush, christening trails and excavating the ancient mining and logging roads that hug the narrow ridges. In the spring the county leased a 7,000-acre parcel of land from a mining company and it plans to turn it into an off-road park. By next year the county hopes to secure another 30,000 acres, giving it the potential for a 280-mile trail

Po’ouli Bird Feared Extinct on Haleakala

The New York Times reports a bird, a po’ouli, the last known member of its genus and species, died in its cage on Maui on Nov. 26. The bird is a shy, nearly silent brown bird with a black face that lived on the upper slopes of the Haleakala volcano, climbing tree trunks and eating insects and snails. The species was not discovered until 1973, when it was already in a death spiral. In 30 years its numbers fell from a few dozen to three. The other two are feared dead.

Controversy Over Fifty 413 Foot Tall Wind Farms Near Spruce Knob

Many thanks to spookymike who points there is a controversy over a wind farm near Spruce Knob.

The matter is being discussed by a Yahoo group Spruceknob (aimed at astronomers seeking dark skies)

There’s a great deal of VERY CURRENT information on the background at johnrsweet.com.

According to a Charlestown Gazette newsstory the opposition is headed by the newly formed Friends of Beautiful Pendleton County.

Liberty Gap Wind Force hopes to build up to 50 wind turbines, each up to 413 feet tall, along a ridgetop just east of the South Branch of the Potomac River. The total generating capacity is between 70 and 100 megawatts.