State spells out plan for use of Great Hosmer

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copyright the Chronicle January 25, 2017

 

 by Joseph Gresser

 

CRAFTSBURY COMMON — At a community meeting here Saturday, the state proposed a framework for deciding what kinds of activities will be allowed on Great Hosmer Pond. More than 110 people gathered in the Craftsbury Academy gym to hear the idea put forward by a study committee, but it was unclear how many were optimistic about the outline.

For some time there has been friction between people who want to enjoy water skiing or other activities involving speedy power boats and those who like kayaking, canoeing, or sculling. Many of the scullers are connected with the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, which runs a sculling program that uses the pond for its classroom and practice area.

According to Rebecca Ellis, senior counsel for government affairs for the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), a six-member task force met three times and came up with what was called a straw proposal.  It provides a framework for changes to state regulations governing the pond, Ms. Ellis said.

The two parts of the proposal said:

  1. Racing shells and rowing sculls are allowed at all times except not between… and ….
  2. Waterskiing and any towing of persons by a motorized vessel is allowed between… and …, or when other boats are not on the water.

The blanks will be filled in with set times and a new regulation put in place by late summer, according to Ms. Ellis.

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Ski for Light holds Craftsbury event

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copyright the Chronicle January 11, 2017

 

by Elizabeth Trail

 

CRAFTSBURY — It was a cold gray Saturday here, but the slopes and trails at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center were bright with skiers and snowshoers in red vests, some marked “Guide” and some marked “Blind Skier.”

The 22 visually impaired skiers who came to the weekend’s Ski for Light event are fit and physically active. Many are professionals, most are middle-aged or older, all enjoy a chance to spend a weekend outdoors improving their skiing or snowshoeing skills.

The same could be said of the volunteer guides — sighted skiers who pay their own way to Ski for Light events year after year.

But for the blind skiers, there’s the added challenge of pointing skis down a hill they can’t see, and trusting a guide they may have met just the day before.

“You just relax and bend your knees and go,” said Marie Hennessy, president of New England Ski for Light. “You have to put your full trust with this person.”

In his early days as a guide, Stephen Flanders of Norwich steered a skier into a bush by calling out the wrong directions.

“It’s important to know left from right,” he said drily.

But despite that inauspicious start, Mr. Flanders has stuck it out as a guide for more than ten years.

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Foresters talk stewardship at Craftsbury Outdoor Center

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copyright the Chronicle September 28, 2016

by Paul Lefebvre.

CRAFTSBURY — To see the forest and not the trees could have dire consequences for the landowner who wants to be a good steward of the land and pass the fruits of his or her labor onto future generations.

That was one of the take-aways from a conversation among foresters, landowners and citizens here last week at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center.

The discussion was the latest in a Summer Forestry Series focusing on land that constitutes the watershed of the Black River. As one of the organizers of the series, Orleans County Forester Jared Nunery said in an interview this week that the series has explored bedrock, soil types, and what he called the nuts and bolts of the watershed’s ecological system. Tuesday’s talk added human beings to the mix.

Henry Cold, a landowner, warned his listeners that while society has passed laws to protect land uses, it still lacks a land ethic. He said that landowners’ privileges have not been matched with landowners’ obligations when it comes to recognizing the forest as a community in which human beings are only members.

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Susan Dunklee makes history again, returns home

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Olympian biathlete Susan Dunklee of Barton smiles in the cafeteria at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, where she trains as part of the Green Racing Project.  Photo by Natalie Hormilla

Olympian biathlete Susan Dunklee of Barton smiles in the cafeteria at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, where she trains as part of the Green Racing Project. Photo by Natalie Hormilla

copyright the Chronicle April 2, 2014

by Natalie Hormilla

CRAFTSBURY — Susan Dunklee of Barton returned to Vermont last week, having made history once again.

After her Olympic run in Sochi, Russia, in February, it was back to business as usual on the biathlon World Cup circuit.  In her final week of races, in Oslo, Norway, Ms. Dunklee had a career breakthrough:  She came in third in the 7.5-kilometer sprint, marking the first time in 20 years that an American woman biathlete graced the World Cup podium.

“Just to get up there, when it’s the same field, it’s pretty special,” she said in an interview last week.  She was referring to the wide field of athletes that participate in World Cup races.

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Sargent joins friends in Sochi for Olympics

Ida Sargent of Barton will ski in her first Winter Olympics next month.  Photo courtesy of Dave and Lindy Sargent

Ida Sargent of Barton will ski in her first Winter Olympics next month. Photo courtesy of Dave and Lindy Sargent

copyright the Chronicle January 29, 2014

by Natalie Hormilla

 

On the week of her twenty-sixth birthday, Ida Sargent of Barton got some very big news — that she had officially been named to the U.S. Olympic women’s cross-country ski team.

“I think when I found out I couldn’t stop smiling,” Ms. Sargent said in a telephone interview Friday from Toblach, Italy, where she will compete in two World Cup races this weekend. 

The weekend’s events are the last for Ms. Sargent before she heads to her first Olympic games, in Sochi, Russia.

“Then on Sunday, we’ll drive to Munich, then Monday we do all the processing — fill out the forms, get the visas figured out, and get our uniforms.  Then on Tuesday, we fly to Sochi.”

Even with the Olympics around the corner, Ms. Sargent is still focused on the tasks at hand.

“Right now, I’m still kind of focusing on these next World Cup races and trying to just take each moment in stride,” she said.

Her birthday plans included hard training sessions in the morning, followed by fun with a couple of friends who just happen to be in Italy, too.

“Hannah Dreissigacker and Susan Dunklee are training about 30 minutes from here, which is really unique, because we usually don’t cross paths,” she said.  “That’ll be a really special way to celebrate my birthday.”

Ms. Dunklee and Ms. Dreissigacker are newly named Olympians themselves, having been nominated to the U.S. women’s biathlon team.

The three women have known each other most of their lives, through skiing together at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, first as kids in the Bill Koch League, then as young women in the Craftsbury Green Racing Project.

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