The Maryland Park Service reminds all snowmobilers of the potential for unseen safety hazards on Deep Creek Lake, particularly at night. Starting on Wednesday, February 20th, an area of ice will be removed near Uno Chicago Grill on Garrett Highway to create open water for the Special Olympics Deep Creek Dunk. This area will remain unsafe for quite some time and will be marked with reflective traffic cones. Also be aware that lake surface conditions under bridges where road salt and abrasives are plowed from the pavement are often particularly hazardous. Other conditions that may cause unpleasant situations are unseen snowdrifts or pressure ridges that can act as ramps and cause sleds to become airborne leading to a loss of control and accidents.
Deep Creek Lake is a part of the designated ORV trail system permitting use by registered snowmobiles only. Permits are available by mail or at any of the local State Park offices during normal business hours. Snowmobiles may operate at night if equipped with working head and taillights. Access to the lake may be made at Deep Creek Lake State Park or with permission from a private landowner with a permit site adjacent to the lake.
Ice fishermen, hikers and cross-country skiers traveling on the lake should also exercise caution. The wearing of or having readily accessible life preservers could prevent a tragedy. If you encounter people, pets or wildlife that have fallen through the ice, contact either 911 or the toll free DNR Communications number 1-800-628-9944 for assistance.
For further information on ice conditions at Deep Creek Lake, contact a ranger at the Park Headquarters office (301) 387-5563 or the Discovery Center on weekends at (301) 387-7067.
Well….maybe we are never destined to hold the Winter Olympics here in Deep Creek Lake, but we have had enough snow to contend some of the finest resorts in Canada. The world has their eyes set on center stage today as the 2010 Winter Olympics Games begin today. Some people have decided to forego the televised opening events so they can strap on their equipment of choice and compete against their family and friends on Wisp Mountain. As we speak, as far as the eye can see, there is a line of cars filing into Wisp Resort to enjoy a spectacular President’s Weekend.
I remember as a child being fascinated and excited by the start of the Winter Olympics and my heart warmed by the solidarity of the World’s spirit. I couldn’t wait for the start of the giant downhill ski events and I had tremendous respect for the men and women who put their faith in a tiny steel edge on their skis going in excess of 70 mph downhill. I would beg my parents to stay up past my bedtime to be able to watch the long jump skiers explode off the launching ramp and soar like birds over the distance of football fields landing with grace and precision on a groomed corduroy ski slope. My favorite of all, hands down, was and still is the four man bobsled competition. These fiberglass sleds are propelled by gravity on razor steel runners down a frozen ice track going speeds in excess of 90 mph. I was fortunate last year to man the brake-mans position in Salt Lake City and bomb the infamous Olympic run in a four man bobsled.
If you are not here with us on the slopes in Deep Creek Lake this weekend take some time to reflect and enjoy some of your favorite Olympic memories and tune in during the next two weeks to make some new ones.
Deep Creek Lake Winter Revisited
I have heard a lot of chatter from people on the East Coast and a lot of the country who are voicing their desires for springtime to blossom tomorrow (if possible!) with the wave of a magic wand. Here in Deep Creek Lake we had 36 to 40 inches this past weekend with another 20 inches coming in the next couple of days. My love for winter activities segregates me to a different perception of cold snowy winters, and I could tell by the sea of smiles I encountered this weekend that I am not alone. The amount of snow we are receiving here in Deep Creek Lake and the quality of powder that we have seen makes it all too difficult to throw in the towel for the winter season. I know there are some “powder junkies” like myself that look at a big winter snow storm in the same light as a surfer sees a hurricane and its potential for bringing a large clean swell or in our case, some fresh powder.
You won’t be disappointed if you make it to Garrett County from your hometowns this weekend (some of who are still digging out from the last storm last weekend). Rest assured that the roads here are masterfully manicured and most of all safe to bring your family for a visit. I see the snow starting to fall this morning and I’m already getting excited about getting a couple of quick powder runs in tomorrow morning before work. Be one of the many who get out of the gates early and come chase the fresh snow during our self proclaimed “powder hour” and make sure you get your fill of fun before spring does officially take over.
If you have the need for speed or just like to be adventurous, snowmobiling is a great way to see Deep Creek Lake’s countryside in style. The Deep Creek Lake State Park’s Meadow Mountain Trail is one of the ways you can enjoy 5.5 miles of open terrain, perfect for a Sunday ride. For those who are really gung-ho, hardcore locals ride at their own risk at 70+ mph on the ice frozen waters of Deep Creek Lake. The lake offers 65 miles of shoreline, approximately 3,900 acres of surface coverage and is roughly 12 miles in length. A pretty large playground for the brave!
Snowmobile Drag Races will be held at Winter’s Field in Oakland, Maryland on February 20th beginning at noon. Registration begins at 9:00 to 11:30 and there are cash payouts for 1st, 2nd & 3rd places in each class. There are 7 classes this year: 1) Vintage “1990 & Older” sleds, 2) 500cc & Under, 3) 600cc, 4) 700cc, 5) 800cc, 6) 900cc, 7) 1000cc.
The race is sponsored by High Mountain On-Off Road, Auto & Truck Accessories. For more information call 301.334.5060.
Deep Creek Lakes Winter Extension
Deep Creek Lake Winter Extension. Well the groundhog has extended our winter season, which is fine by me considering I have not had my fill of snowboarding this year. Wisp Resort was jam-packed this weekend with happy skiers and snowboarders. The talk among the local winter sports enthusiasts is that it has been some of the best snow that we have had in decades. The recipe for that perfect champagne powder is cold temperatures, low humidity, and snow, snow, SNOW. This is something we have had plenty of. Bring your family to Deep Creek Lake and come join us and the winter extension. See you on the slopes!
The Davisson Brother’s at Deep Creek Lake
Ok…You just spent the day skiing in perfect powder at Wisp Resort in Deep Creek Lake. You just finished having the famous Wednesday night sushi dinner special at DC’s Bar and you are looking for something to capture your attention and enhance your already amazing vacation experience. Thankfully, you are already nearby to an incredibly entertaining musical experience that has become the place to be for many McHenry Locals. Nothing stirs up more enthusiasm for locals and visiting Wisp patrons then the one and only Davisson Brothers Band.
This Clarksburg, West Virginia band is a fusion of bluegrass, country, blues, and rock and roll that is fueled by the lead singer/guitarist Donnie Davisson, who stomps the crowd in the ground with his hardcore country boy personality. His facial interaction taunts the crowd while he slings and swings around the stage smiling and singing proudly of self-proclaimed Hillbilly Honky Tonkin. “ Are there any hillbilly’s out there” he laughs in-between songs. The rhythm section is led by the ear-to-ear smiling master bass player Sammy Davisson, whose country/rock funkadelic grooves are in perfect cadence with the solid drum beat of Aaron Regester.
The whole sound is pulled together by the soul-cleansing force of mellow Davisson Brother lead guitarist Chris Davisson, who is in command of the Allman Brothers-styled southern blues slide guitar licks that relax the crowd during one guitar riff and has them shaking their hips on the next. He stands as the “quiet Beatle” of the group whose stage maturity serves as the backbone to the Davisson Brothers sound.
Put the Davisson’s Brothers webpage in your favorites and be sure to schedule a visit to Deep Creek Lake to catch their next performance (February 17, 2010).
The Hillbilly Gypsies
I’ve picked guitar for the last 20 years and I can tell you it’s not my strong suit. I have always loved the sounds of a guitars flat picking bass runs, a screamin fiddle, and the spine tingling banjo following the pulse of the standup bass. I have always had great respect for the people who instinctively possess the ability to dissect the frets of any bluegrass instrument and use it as a tool to pull people together from all walks of life and have a great time.
This summer I stumbled in on a bluegrass jamboree hosted by The Mountain State Brewery and starring the Hillbilly Gypsies. This group of five brings you back to old school foot stompin/hand clapping back woods bluegrass. They are true to a style of music that I’ve read has roots back to Ireland, Scotland and England and that evolved throughout American history in the mountains and country of this great land.
Check out their schedule before you make your next trip to Deep Creek Lake and be sure not to miss one hell of a good time.
Don’t get too cozy next to the fireplace with your usual favorite beverage on your next visit to Deep Creek Lake. The winter has consistently produced an abundant amount of snow and it shows no sign of giving up anytime soon. We all love Deep Creek Lake in the wintertime for the excellent skiing and snowboarding but don’t be afraid to step out of your normal routine on occasion and get out there and explore Garrett County and all it has to offer. Take a trip down to Swallow Falls State Park and go for a long walk around a magical winter wonderland where the waterfalls are frozen like arctic stalactites. I didn’t realize you could actually smell clean air and how invigorating it is. Get over your fear of the cold and get outside and discover a county that has an enormous amount of acreage set aside (never to be developed) for you and your family to enjoy. Load up the kids and the dogs and head down to Fork Run Recreational Area to walk the trails around the rock climbing areas. This is a great place to snowshoe in the wintertime after a huge snowstorm. Challenge yourself this New Year to excel in life and to live every day as if it was your last; let Garrett County be the catalyst for your change. I can’t think of too many areas in the world that offer you such picturesque scenery that pulls you back into nature and the feeling of being alive. Bob Dylan wrote in song once; “He not busy being born, is busy dying.” Make 2010 your year for living..
The next time you are vacationing here at Deep Creek Lake, Maryland take a little time at dusk to drive around to the North side of Wisp Ski Mountain and experience some spectacular sunsets. Even during the day, the incredible views of the surrounding mountain ranges span for 30-50 miles. At nighttime, the skies transform into a kaleidoscope of colors that will leave you in a spiritual calm.
Just a short distance from our home, we enjoy these sunsets atop Wisp Mountain on a regular basis along with our dog, Mali, who pounces us anytime the word “walk” is mentioned! This is a spectacle worth penciling on your next trip to Deep Creek Lake!!! Visit www.DeepCreekLakeProperty.com for an up-to-date calendar of Garrett County happenings.
Last Sunday afternoon, I had the pleasure of catching Garrett Community Concert Band’s Holiday Concert titled “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”. It was a splendid performance with traditional Christmas music as well as Hanukkah favorites. One in particular that was new and enjoyable to me was “Fum, fum, fum”. The concert was held in Deep Creek Lake, Maryland at Garrett College’s auditorium and it was a full house.
The band, led by Musical Director Moe Turentine, is a volunteer group of musicians that was formed in 2000 and presents 3 concerts a year. Their members are from all walks – business professionals, teachers, homemakers, retirees and students. They are a volunteer organization supported by Garrett College and donors. The band also offers scholarships to students pursuing advanced music education. Their motto: “We play together out of love of music and to enjoy the company of others with a similar interest”.
They also play a July 4th concert outdoors at Garrett College, which I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy many times and highly recommend. For more information www.garrettband.org. And, for Deep Creek Lake, Maryland information visit www.DeepCreekLakeProperty.com.