As you may have heard, we unveiled our new Outdoors page on the BDN website a few months back, and have kept revamping it ever since.
Although our in-print Outdoors pages run just twice a week, our online goal is to provide readers new outdoor content each day. Some of that content comes from us. Some of it comes from various wire services. And some of it comes from you, the readers.
Our goal is to create a clearinghouse — or a clubhouse, if you will — for outdoor enthusiasts looking for informative, entertaining postings about the activities they’re interested in.
And you can help.
The more information we have to share, the cooler our clubhouse will become, you see. We already know that there are a lot of avid outdoors folk out there who like to write about their experiences and share them with others. Among those are some really talented writers. We’re also sure of that.
So while we’ve been on the lookout for outdoor bloggers for the past several months, this morning we’re officially opening the door to our BDN clubhouse and inviting established, or aspiring, bloggers to stop by.
If you’ve been writing an outdoors blog and you want us to include your offerings on our Outdoors page, we want to hear from you. If your blog focuses on hunting or fishing, that’s great. If it’s more about hiking or skiing or snowshoeing, that’s fantastic. And if you’re just into walking through the woods and taking photos of the neat things you see, we’re interested.
So, you ask, what’s in it for you? Fame? Fortune?
Perhaps not. But I can assure you of one thing: More people will visit your blog and read your posts if you link up with us.
One of the bloggers who has already taken the plunge told us this week that traffic to his site has increased 300 percent since his blog began appearing on our Outdoors page. That, we can agree, is a pretty good outcome.
For us, for our readers … and for the blogger.
If you’re interested in learning more, you can contact our Outdoors editor, Jeff Strout, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to hearing from you, and welcoming you to our clubhouse.
Dexter derby planned
It’s officially winter. Lakes are starting to freeze up, and it’s time to start thinking about ice-fishing options for the weeks ahead.
Earlier this week I spoke with Jim Costedio, one of the organizers of the annual Dexter Fish & Game Association ice fishing derby, and he said preparations are under way for the 2011 event.
The derby will be held on Jan. 15-16 on Lake Wassookeag in Dexter and fishing will be held from 6 a.m. until 4 p.m. on both days. The entry fee is just $10, and entrants also earn an arm’s length of raffle tickets.
One lucky angler could walk off with $10,000 in cash, and five “named” fish will be swimming around in Wassookeag during the derby. Catch one of those tagged fish and you’ll earn $500.
Costedio said a pile of door prizes also will be up for grabs.
For advance tickets or more information, call Jim Nicholas at 924-5082, Vance McNaughton at 277-3128, Diane Nicholas at 469-5690 or Jim Costedio at 270-2866.
Ski areas booming
If you’ve got no plans for vacation week, you might want to look toward the mountains; Maine’s largest ski areas received plenty of snow during the most recent storm and conditions are improving by the day.
As of Thursday, Sugarloaf in Carrabassett Valley had received 12 inches of snow in the previous week and had 80 trails (44 of them groomed) open to the public.
Down in Newry, the folks at Sunday River had 65 trails (61 of them groomed) open and 10 lifts were running. The average base depth was 30 inches.
And with a bit of cold weather, chances are good that plenty of the state’s smaller mountains will be offering some good vacation-week skiing as well. Go to www.skimaine.com for a complete list of ski areas and condition reports.