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What's Up, Up Here? All the news and gossip for March 16-22

March 16, 2012

The night manager of Rafters, Mike Ruggiero, stands in on bass for a song with the very talented James King Band. Photo/Jesse Barlet

Mammoth downhiller Stacey Cook (Mammoth Times, March 9)  was having a strong run at the World Cup Finals in Austria this week, but fell in the traverse section near the bottom of the course and slammed into the safety netting. She was quickly able to get herself out of the nets and ski to the bottom of the hill. Her world ranking fell from 8th to 10th, but it was still her best season, by far. …

Europe continues its lousy snow season. Cook and her pals in the World Cup finals in Schladming, Austria, had their training runs cancelled Sunday on account of weak snow on the lower section of the hill (where she fell), along with rain and fog. …

Regarding Dan Hansen’s bicycling trip across the country, howzabout 400 miles in four days, eh? He endured a powerful Deep South rainstorm along the way. “The problem with biking in the rain,” says he, “is that no matter what, you’re going to get wet, either from rain or from sweat.” …

What’s a “snorkel alert?” Don’t ask Drenched Dan, ask Howard Schekter’s Dweebs, and they’ll tell you it’s all about a series of storms, like this week’s. …

We almost lost sight of the innovative Rock’N Bowl project, but we ran into investor Dan O’Connell the other day and he said the architectural drawings are done and he’s ready to start developing this spring. …

Nice to see Stu Brown’s dad in town. Nickname: Boris. Not even Stuart can explain that. Anyway, Boris rolls in for three weeks once a year, this time escaping amazing floods in their native Australia. …

If you’re hoping to hike Half Dome this summer, you’ll want to take action by March 31. Under a new system, permits to reach the summit will be allocated by a lottery this month for the whole season, instead of month by month. The new system ought to cut down on ticket scalpers, say the Park People. …

Kittredge Sports unloaded a pile of old, used rental skis this week, but cautioned buyers that they were only good “for art or furniture.” …

Guess who got an invite to the Junior Worlds for halfpipe? Yup, it was Kelly Berger. The athlete has to pay for travel expenses, though. Still, an invitation is an invitation, right? …

Shirley Seydel and the members of the Eastside Velo Club (cycling), say skiing is all about fresh tracks, and low occupancy—both in town and on the hill. “It’s not cycling,” she says in a Facebook post, “it’s what we do when you cannot ride pavement.” …

Congratulations to Mammoth Track Club’s Meb Keflezighi on being named Competitor-of-the-Year at the 20th Annual Endurance Live awards last weekend in Los Angeles. Honestly, we didn’t know there was such a thing. …

Speaking of Meb the K, he ran the San Diego Half Marathon, and gave a homeless guy lunch. Wotta guy. …

International skicross lost a great companion last week when Canadian racer Nik Zoricic suffered head injuries after crashing into the nets on the side of the course near the final jump of a race in Switzerland. Ski authorities called it a “freak accident,” much the same way they labeled the fatal accident of Canadian freestyle skier Sarah Burke who crashed during halfpipe training two months to the day before Zoricic’s accident. Both Burke and Zoricic were 29, and it wasn’t just Canada that grieved. Mammoth skicrosser John Teller: “All my best goes out to Niks’ family and the whole Canadian SX team. We all lost a great friend and competitor.” …

RIP Dick Mobley, dead at 71. All the skiers up here in the mountains will miss “The Captain” almost as much as all the surfers in Hermosa. …

Congrats to Kaya Turski on winning Euro X Slopestyle Wednesday. …

Blaise Jones got a pretty good shot of author Aron Ralston last week in Bishop, and Cleland Hoff noted that in the picture, his right hand is cut off. “I love unintentional irony,” she says. …

NatureBridge, the largest residential environmental education partner of the National Park Service, opened registration this past week for its Summer Field Research Course at its Yosemite campus. It’s a two-week backpacking trip where teenage participants create and carry out their own ecological research projects and learn about the natural history of the Sierra Nevada. …

Swedish Alpine skiing star Anja Paerson announced on Monday that she will retire after this week’s World Cup finals, ending a 14-year career in which she won six Olympic medals. A knee injury did her in. … 

Mebbe the best thing we heard on the radio this past week was Stacey Powells’ comment that “people are revolting all over the world.” A really good double entrendre is hard to find. …

Happy birthday, Lori Lee Michelon, Kim Stravers and all you other Pisces up here.

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