Thursday, December 23, 2010

Great Outdoors Awards for 2010

In honor of another year of wild and wacky tales from the Great Outdoors, we at Outdoors 720 are proud to present the Great Outdoors Awards for 2010.

Winners need not be present. The envelopes please!

Shark vs. Human Underwater Tennis Award: To the shark and the unidentified human, who played a singles match in a London Aquarium tank (above) as a way to promote Dunlop's new Aeroskin racket, inspired by shark skin. The shark avoided the net at all costs, displayed an awesome backfin and in the end devoured its opponent, showing no mercy. We'll spare you the gory details.

Honest Abe Hunting Award: To Jim Karpowitz, Utah’s director of the state wildlife agency who asked to be cited for a fish-and-game violation. Seems he mistakenly -- and illegally -- shot two sage grouse, immediately called in an enforcement officer and requested he be issued a citation. He was cited, and he paid a $138 fine. “I can tell you that even though this is very embarrassing, it feels good to have taken responsibility for the error I made and to hold myself accountable.” Well done, sir. Next time know the regulations and what county you're in. Salt Lake Tribune

Fishing Fanatic Going Overboard Award: To Robert Matsuura, who fished for 10 hours with a hook in his head. But it was worth it. We think. Matsuura was fishing with Sacramento State fishing teammate Peter Lee during the FLW College Fishing Western Regional Championship when Lee’s lure hit him in the head. Two of the three treble hooks were deep into his skull. Someone cut the other hook and lure away and he kept on fishing, after taking two Tylenols. The pair ended up winning the event and collecting $50,000 for their university. Then Matsuura had the hooks removed. Said Matsurra: "A family friend is a dentist. He numbed it and pried it out." Yeouch! Still sounds painful. Sacramento Bee via UPI

The Fish Weren't Biting But The Guns Were Award: To the unidentified 71-year-old man, who while fishing from a pier facing Lower Manhattan reeled in a .32-caliber semiautomatic handgun. The barnacle-encrusted gun from the Hudson River was being checked by authorities to determine whether it was connected to any crimes. The man who caught the gun? He carried it to a nearby hotel where a doorman told him to drop it. He did and then returned to his fishing, like any normal fisherman would do. Natch. The Jersey Journal of Jersey City via UPI

Lumberjack Award: To Larry
Lefner, who created this awesome
treetop sculpure in Basalt, Colo.,
in 2004 but was never given
a Great Outdoors Award. So
here's to you Larry! Fly 
Fisherman Magazine   
Brave (or Stupid) Fisherman Award: To commercial fisherman Rodney Soloman, who reeled in a live missile from the Gulf of Mexico. We don't make these things up! The man brought in the "floating" air-to-air guided missile while fishing 50 miles off Panama City. He kept it on his boat for 10 days before returning to Madeira Beach, Fla., where a bomb squad dismantled it. The report said Air Force and Navy use Gulf waters off the Panhandle for weapons training. The missile was said to be very corroded from floating in saltwater for a long time. It was also a "live" and "unstable" missile. So, the Navy or Air Force left an unexploded bomb floating in the Gulf of Mexico? Uh, what's wrong with this picture? AP via USA  Today 

Misguided Skydiver Award: To skydiver Andrew Stack, who steered himself toward trees on his descent and landed in said trees where he hung out for 3 hours before being rescued. Said the Massachusetts skydiving business owner: "He did not steer where he was supposed to go, so he ended up steering himself into the trees." Yeah, we got that. WCVB-TV via UPI 

The Ol' Ring the Doorbell And Run Trick Award: To the deer of Kenora, Ontario, which are driving a certain Rose Allin crazy by constantly ringing her doorbell. "I just wish they'd stop," she said. No word if they ever did. QMI Agency via the Toronto Sun 

Bagging Two Deer Without Taking a Shot Award: To the two Benton Harbor, Mich., fishermen, who witnessed two bucks fighting to their deaths, enabling them to score meat for the freezer. The deer drowned after locking antlers while fighting on the bank of the St. Joseph River. The men obtained permits to claim the carcasses. The report said they are having the heads, which are still locked together, turned into a wall mount. We're assuming they'll untangle the antlers first. The Herald-Palladium via UPI

Cowardly Lion Award: To the cowardly lion, which was scared up a tree by a squirrel-chasing Jack Russell terrier on a farm in South Dakota. That's a 17-pound terrior vs. a 150-pound mountain lion. Don't mess with lit'l Jack. AP via Yahoo! News

Davy Crockett Award: To the Wisconsin woman, who noticed a black bear in distress outside her bedroom window. The bear was choking on a cow bone. She called the sheriff but decided to come to the bear's rescue herself. She put on leather gloves and stuck her hand down the bear's throat and dislodged the bone from the unresponsive bear -- just as a member of the Department of Natural Resources showed up. The bear eventually came to and wandered off with her cubs. Crockett would've been proud. The Lakeland Times via The Outside Blog

Coming soon: A list of the most intriguing 2010 Great Outdoors posts from Outdoors 720.

Follow Outdoors720 on Twitter at @outdoors720

Other interesting posts on Outdoors 720:
Kayaker terrified by shark
Skateboarding in Afghanistan: The paradise within
Boys lost at sea for 50 days; you'll never guess why
Wildlife rescue: Saving deer cost pair $90 apiece

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