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Rick Steelhammer

Recreation Reporter
  • Phone 304-348-5169
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Steelhammer, Rick

Crowd told that Tomblin won’t move women’s prison

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POINT PLEASANT — More than 100 people packed the third- floor courtroom of the Mason County Courthouse on Thursday night to voice their objections to plans by state corrections officia...

Yeager ready to design safety zone rebuild, not ready to pay for it

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While one of three design options for rebuilding the collapsed safety overrun area at Yeager Airport should be chosen soon, pending lawsuit and insurance settlements, and a new state policy that caps matching funds for f...

Sediment issues from Corridor H work continue, despite fines and citations

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J.F. Allen Co. of Elkins, the contractor on the Corridor H segment, and the DOT were named in an Oct. 1, 2013 consent order, after racking up, from January through August of that year, nine violation notices for sediment...

Yeager hires new police chief; other personnel changes likely

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Former St. Albans police chief Joe Crawford has been hired as Yeager Airport’s chief of police and security director following the retirement of former chief Robert Long -- and more personnel moves may be on the w...

Quest program equips people with outdoor adventure skills

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CAIRO — Whether its backpacking or birding, kayaking or canoeing — if you want to learn an outdoor recreation skill or get reacquainted with an activity put on hold due to job o...

Future murky for dam removal project on West Fork River

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CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — Four small dams built 85 to 105 years ago to supply municipal water systems have converted the north-flowing, 40-mile stretch of the West Fork River from the ...

Creepy the new cool in the land of whoppers and drumsticks

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When it comes to television ads for fast food chains, creepy seems to be the new cool.

Burger King, the plastic-faced mascot for the Home of the Whopper, is back on the job after four years of forced retirement, af...

Slide-related costs, no reimbursements put Yeager in financial crunch

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With construction costs mounting to stabilize and rebuild its collapsed safety overrun, and no reimbursement funds flowing in from its insurer or federal emergency sources, Yeager Airport is nearing the bottom of its fin...

Of raccoon warriors and strange political bedfellows

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While the U.S. Marines may be looking for a few good men and women, other branches of the service have sought the assistance of more exotic mammal species to lend a hoof or a fin to aid the national security effort.

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ATV trail resort goes out on a limb with lodging option

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BLUEWELL, W.Va. — When Tyler Smith, Nathanael Tankersley and Zach Serdar get ready to ride a section of the Hatfield-McCoy Trail, you can be sure they’re out of their tree.

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Testing for cause of Yeager landslide adds to remediation costs

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Nearly half of a $995,000 engineering fee being spent to design the removal of Yeager Airport’s safety overrun area landslide and the stabilization of the slope from which it fell can be attributed to planning des...

SportsFest includes jet ski racing, skateboarders, martial arts and more

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The Hidden Trails National Pro Watercross Championship and the sixth annual Rocks the River EVP Pro Beach Volleyball Tournament will be the highlight of activities at the 2015 Charleston SportsFest, which takes place Fri...

Slide removal work resumes at Yeager; first forensic test site opened

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Heavy-equipment operators dug through the asphalt pad beneath the remnants of the Engineered Material Arresting System bed at Yeager Airport’s slide-plagued safety overrun area Tuesday and loaded the material into...

Does anybody really know what time it is? Does anybody really care?

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Although daylight-saving time had been in use in various parts of the country since 1918, and was put into effect nationally by President Franklin Roosevelt in 1942, it was still a hotly contested topic when I was a kid,...

North Bend Lake’s ‘ghost forest’ a mecca for seldom-seen woodpecker

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HARRISVILLE, W.Va. — Five minutes after leaving the dock at North Bend Lake, a pontoon boat glided past a partially submerged log on which six Canada...

Yeager committee questions “emergency” payments, agreements

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Yeager Airport’s Finance Committee on Tuesday began poring through hundreds of documents detailing airport spending since the March 12 runway safety zone landslide, plus all payments made sinc...

New England grad students get Land Trust crash course in West Virginia wilderness

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A pair of graduate students with New England roots recently completed an internship in the canyons and forests of south-central West Virginia that let them know “wild and wonderful” are more than just words...

Past week’s news leaves much for which to be grateful

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A few items to add to this week’s gratitude journal:

I’m grateful that my dentist took up muskie fishing instead of international lion hunting.

I’m thankful that the guy who jumped into ...

Charleston-born software entrepreneur Frank Pritt dies

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Frank Pritt, 75, the Charleston native who used a retirement nest egg to launch a fabulously successful second career as a software designer, allowing him to build a seaside mansion in California that included Charleston...

New River Gorge program trains teen rangers

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FAYETTEVILLE, W.Va. — After backing out of a first attempt to rappel down a sheer, 80-foot slab of sandstone at the New River Gorge’s Bridge Buttress climbing area, Helena...

I’m a-telling you, there’s a column here that SO needs read

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While my saying “my truck needs washed” sounds reasonable to people in my neighborhood -- especially those who have seen it lately following the recent monsoons -- it apparently strikes a dissonant chord wi...

Yeager committee questions expenses since landslide

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Members of Yeager Airport’s finance committee recommended a review of more than $1 million in expenses paid out after the March 12 landslide, after several hundred thousand dollars worth of checks were questioned ...

Green Bank Telescope to key new push to find ‘E.T.’

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank — the place where the world’s first scientific search for extraterrestrial intelligence began in 1960 — will play a k...

Crews begin removing debris from Yeager’s safety runway

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. — After delays caused by legal proceedings and torrential rains, remediation work got underway Monday on the landslide that sheared away from a section of Yeager Airport’s safety overrun a...

A visit to Blennerhassett Island’s other mansion

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PARKERSBURG — To walk inside one of Ohio’s finest homes from its earliest years of settlement, you have to travel to West Virginia.

Maple Shade, the home of Aaron Waldo Putnam and his wife, Charlotte ...