Close this search box.

News from the July Issue of Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine

Street Fishing

North Royalton, Ohio

Jake Sawyer, a 16-year-old from Ohio, had quite a catch back in May when he snagged a three-foot carp—with his hands. The teenager actually had no plans to go fishing, but he spotted the large carp on his street swimming through receding flood waters, which he told the Associated Press reached as high as his mailbox. Sawyer’s proud mother caught the scene on video as he pushed the fish toward a curb and then lifted it in his arms with a swift move. He then carried the fish to a nearby pond and set it free.

More Trouble at Tough Mudder

Mansfield, Ohio

The day after a Tough Mudder—the popular, high-intensity obstacle races that attract thousands of participants—in Mansfield, Ohio, in May, a rescue diver was in critical condition after being pulled from the water below the “Walk the Plank” obstacle. According to a report from WKYC, Bret Buike, a former firefighter who was participating in the race, noticed the diver looking ill. He then jumped into the water and pulled the diver to safety with the help of three lifeguards. Two emergency room doctors (who were participants) and a spectating physician then joined the impromptu response team. At press time the diver was reportedly being treated at MedCentral Health System’s Mansfield Hospital.

The incident occurred just 11 days after a wrongful death lawsuit was filed against organizers of the Mid-Atlantic Tough Mudder. The suit relates to the 2013 death of 28-year-old Avishek Sengupta, who died after being pulled out of the water pit below “Walk the Plank” at a West Virginia event in the series last spring. “Walk the Plank” requires racers to jump off a plank into a deep pool of icy, muddy water.

A Soldier Hikes Home

Appalachian Trail

Christopher Davis recently finished a long stretch of service to his country. During his 14 years in the U.S. Army, the decorated Senior Intelligence Analyst was deployed seven times to Iraq and Afghanistan, and since returning to the states he’s been homeless and battling Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. In an effort to raise funds and awareness for fellow veterans, Davis recently embarked on another long challenge—hiking the entire 2,185-mile Appalachian Trail. Donations supporting the journey will go to the Goodwill Manasota’s American Veterans and Their Families Initiative, where Davis now works as program manager.

According to a story from ABC affiliate WWSB, the Sarasota, Fla.,-based Davis started his southbound hike at Maine’s Mount Katahdin on May 29. When he hopefully finishes after an anticipated five-month trek, Davis—known on the A.T. by the trail name “Goodwill Walking” will step off the trail for an emotional finish near Ellijay, Ga., the hometown he left to join the military.

Canoe Slalom World Championships Coming to Maryland

Deep Creek Lake, Md.

The 2014 International Canoe Federation Canoe Slalom World Championships will return to the United States for just the second time this fall. The prestigious event featuring boaters from around the world will be held at the Adventure Sports Center International in Deep Creek Lake, Md., on September 17-21. The slalom race was tapped to return to Garrett County, where it was held in 1989, after a bid that bested other cities including Krakow, Poland, and Vienna, Austria. The championships will feature Olympic-level athletes from over 35 countries muscling through the gates as they charge down a 300-meter run on the only mountaintop re-circulating whitewater course in the world.

Beyond the Blue Ridge (by Jedd Ferris):

Mother’s Day on Mount St. Helens

Longview, Washington 

On Mother’s Day, both men and women clad in dresses and skirts huffed it to the top of Mount St. Helens. In fact, the growing tradition in honor of moms everywhere drew a record number of climbers to the peak of the popular volcano in southwest Washington on May 11. A record 971 permits were sold for Sunday, while 468 potential climbers bought passes for the day before. Permits to head for the summit of the 8,363-foot peak become limited to 100 per day after May 15 through the summer. The Mother’s Day climb has gotten more popular in recent years, and this year, the sentimental act included one woman spreading her mother’s ashes on the mountain.

Coastal School Building TsUnami Shelter

Ocosta, Washington

A school district in Washington State is getting prepared after the world’s many recent catastrophic weather events. According to the Associated Press, the Ocosta School District is planning to build the nation’s first vertical-evacuation structure in a new elementary school. Design plans for the new school feature an upper-level space where children could take shelter if a tsunami hits the Washington coastal town on Grays Harbor, which is located about 100 miles southwest of Seattle.

Wildlife Officials: Don’t Harass Moose

Wenatchee, Washington

A Fish and Wildlife officer decided to issue an official written warning to a man following a distressed moose in a car while his wife filmed the animal. The moose running through a Wenatchee neighborhood was clearly uncomfortable, and the couple hoping for a viral YouTube clip wasn’t helping the situation, so officer Graham Grant told The Wenatchee World that he was trying to make a statement that it’s unlawful to harass animals.

Share this post:

Discover more in the Blue Ridge:

Join our newsletter!

Subscribe to receive the latest from Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine sent directly to your inbox.