September 2, 2012
There's an old joke about two hikers in the woods encountering an angry bear. When one turns to run, the other warns that he's not fast enough to outrun their ferocious adversary. "I only have to outrun you," the quicker-thinking hiker responds. And so it is with the candidacy of Mitt Romney, whose acceptance speech Thursday at the Republican National Convention may not have been the touchdown the pundits claimed he needed but was surely what his handlers wanted, playing up both the candidate's strength (management experience)
January 1, 2012
Christopher Tkacik, lost in the dark in a state park on Catoctin Mountain, had his dog, iPhone and a slowly draining battery. He could talk to the police trying to find him, but neither they nor the GPS on his smart phone could guide him out. So the 43-year-old attorney from Mount Airy turned on the device's flashlight and held it in the air. A trooper in a Maryland State Police helicopter, using night vision equipment, saw the "faint glow" from...
October 22, 2011
After a recent hike through Patapsco Valley State Park, Baltimore teacher Greg Schnitzlein's jaw dropped as he watched his two dogs emerge from the woods looking, as he says, like Chia Pets, every inch of their fur slathered in sproutlike seeds. Vanessa B. Beauchamp, a Towson University biology professor who happened to be in the parking lot, could hardly believe it. Those seed-covered dogs underscored the futility of the fight she has waged for years against an odd, sticky plant called wavyleaf basketgrass.
October 5, 2011
Fall in the Mid-Atlantic region offers a break from the summer humidity, a pause before the cold, gray winter, and lots of great scenery. It's a perfect opportunity to get outdoors for some exercise that doesn't feel like a chore. Whether it is a peaceful walk to watch birds take flight or a hair-raising zip-line ride among the tree tops, these five activities offer an opportunity to put some fresh air and foliage into your fitness routine. Hike Old Rag As the Ridge Trail on Shenandoah's Old Rag mountain rises more than 2,500 feet, a steep rock scramble near the top requires hikers to "climb, slide, shimmy and crawl" over the boulders, according to the National Park Service.
September 25, 2011
I rejoice with the friends and families of Shane Bauer and Joshua Fattal as their ordeal ended in Evin Prison in Iran. As Mr. Bauer said at the Oman Airport, "Two years is too long in a prison. We sincerely hope for the freedom of other political prisoners and other unjustly imprisoned people in America and in Iran. " This reminded me of the plight of Ahmadi Muslims, hundreds of whom are behind bars under Pakistan's Anti-Ahmadiyya Ordinance XX issued in 1984. It imposes three years imprisonment for simple acts like calling places of worship mosques, performing the Muslim call to prayer, using the traditional Islamic greeting in public, or even publishing religious materials.
July 7, 2011
The recent letter by Anne Roberts ("Loch Raven needs rules, but not deer hunters" June 28) was mind boggling. Yes, of course, we need to abide by the rules in order to preserve our drinking water and for safety reasons. Regarding the survey of residential properties adjacent to Loch Raven that found half of the respondents had negative experiences with hunters and hunting, I have not had one negative experience with hunters through decades of hiking in numerous states. I am a hike leader for the Community College of Baltimore County and have had negative experiences with mountain bikers each time I have led a group of hikers as well as when I hike alone.