Showing posts with label General Adventure. Show all posts
Showing posts with label General Adventure. Show all posts

Video: REI Explores the Place of Women in the Outdoors

Outdoor gear retailer REI has stepped up its game dramatically in terms of encouraging and assisting more women in getting outdoors and enjoying just as many adventures as us men. To that end, the company has recently launched its Forces of Nature campaign and continues to offer women-only adventure weekends through the Outessa program. In this video, we explore the challenges that women face in the outdoor environment, which is not always as welcoming as it should be. We also join a team of female climbers as the head out into the backcountry to show us that they are as tough and talented as any man.

REI Presents: Within Reach from REI on Vimeo.

Men's Journal Names the 25 Most Adventurous Women of the Past 25 Years

Here's another list for those of you who enjoy these articles. This time, it comes our way from the good folks over at Men's Journal, and it names the 25 most adventurous women of the past 25 years, giving us a look at a group of ladies who are tough, determined, and downright inspiring too.

Each profile of the ladies includes a few paragraphs about why they are deserving of a spot on the list, as well as a brief rundown of their noteworthy accomplishments. These women are explorers, pioneers, athletes, and activist, and in most cases they are all of those at once. I have written about the exploits of many of them right here on this very blog, with more than a few pulling off some of the most daring and impressive accomplishments we've seen in the outdoor world.

So who made the cut? As usual, I won't spoil the list too much, but I will reveal a couple of the women who earned a place on MJ's honor roll. That list includes the likes of polar explorer Sarah McNair-Landry, Nepali climber Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita, and Appalachian Trail hiker Jennifer Pharr Davis. They're joined on the round-up by filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow and mountaineer Melissa Arnot Reid, just to hame a few.

To find out who else is part of this hall of fame, and to learn more about the ladies mentioned above, check out the full article by clicking here. Chances are, you'll come away with a few new heroes to follow and a lot of respect for some of the most impressive women who are out their pushing the boundaries of what is possible.

Video: The Life and Legacy of John Muir

John Muir was a tireless advocate for protecting and preserving outdoor spaces for others to enjoy. In fact, without his efforts, we might not have places like Yosemite and Yellowstone designated at national parks. Muir was a forward thinking naturalist in a time when that wasn't a popular thing to be, and yet he wrote about the need to ensure that our wild spaces didn't vanish completely from the Earth. In this video, we learn more about the man and his work, and we see first hand the places that he worked to protect. It is a powerful and inspiring tribute to that legacy.

John Muir - The Last Oasis from Michael Coleman on Vimeo.

On the Road in Oregon

I've been home just three days, but its already time for me to hit the road again. This time, I'm off to Oregon to spend a few days paddling with some fellow journalists on a sponsored trip from Oru Kayaks. This time, I'll only be gone until the weekend, and should resume regular updates next Monday.

I first wrote about Oru Kayaks back in 2012, when the company launched its first foldable boat. Since that time, I've always been intrigued with how their kayaks performed out on the water, since they promise to give paddlers the speed and agility of a hardshell with the convenience of an inflatable. In a few days, I'll get a chance to find out for myself, as we'll be paddling a 47 mile (75 km) stretch of river in one. That means I should have some good stories to share when I get back next week.

In the meantime, I hope everyone has a great end of the week and has some good adventures of their own planned. Spring is here in the northern hemisphere, and its time to be outside and enjoying it. If you haven't taken advantage of the shift in seasons just yet, now is the time for sure.

When I get back, we'll get caught up on everything happening in the Himalaya. Considering how the season has gone so far, there should be plenty of interesting things to talk about.

Video: After the Avalanche - Corey Richards Talks About Life with PTSD

Last week I shared the powerful story of Cory Richards, a mountaineer and Nat Geo photographer who suffers from PTSD in such a way that has actually brought a cycle of self-destructive behavior to his life. The PTSD manifested itself after he was nearly killed in an avalanche while climbing Gasherbrum II a few years back, and it has made his life a struggle ever since. In this video, we get to see and hear Cory talk about these challenges and the demons he has faced along the way. It is a sobering and honest look at what it is like to live a life of adventure but still not be able to escape the things that are haunting you.

Video: Wonderland - Great Adventures in the Wilderness

Remember that sense of wonder you would often have when you first set out into the wilderness? That feeling that you were exploring a place that no one else had ever seen, and the potential for discoveries were unlimited. That is the same sense you'll get from this video from Salomon TV, which reminds us that great adventures await us outside in nature. All we have to do is go find them.

Video: A Tribute to Discomfort with Cory Richards

Earlier today I shared a link to a new article from National Geographic that discusses the challenges that mountaineer and adventure photographer Cory Richards has faced throughout his life. In that story, Richards shares some very personal revelations about the demons that have stalked him over the past few years. In this video, we get a different look at this man, who has created a lasting legacy both on and off the mountain. Here, he talks about the suffering and discomfort that comes along with pursuing your passions in the wilderness. Something that a lot of us can relate to as we go out to explore the world around us.

Outside Shares the Best Advice the Magazine Has Ever Given

In 2017, Outside magazine is celebrating its 40th anniversary. To commemorate that event, the adventure mag is posting a series of special articles that look back on its long and storied history. The latest of those stories is available online and it shares the best advice that the editors, writers, and contributors of the periodical have ever given. As you can imagine, there is a wealth of wisdom to be had here.

For experienced climbers, backpackers, and travelers, some of the advice probably seems like common sense. But, in some cases, Outside was providing these insights years before the mainstream crowd caught up with their way of thinking. For instance, the magazine offered ideas on how to ditch your car for a bike nearly a decade ago, but bike commuting has become all the rage in recent years. The pages of Outside have also been filled with nutritional advice too, telling us what to eat, when to eat it, and how to maintain proper calories while out on the trail. You'll find a few pieces of info about that in this article too.

As usual, the "best advice" covers a wide range of topics. The magazine reminds us to "Keep it Simple" for instance, and goes on to explain how to maintain focus on fitness and recovery. You'll also find advice on finding the best adventure partner, cherishing your favorite piece of gear, how to wanter without getting lost, and so much more.

Many of these items have been collected from issues dating back as far as 1978, but the wisdom is just as useful today as it was back then. There is a lot to take in here, but it is a great read and an excellent reminder for those of us who already knew all of this stuff, but may have forgotten it along the way.

Read the entire story here. It may be a major eye-opener for you.

Video: This Amazing Video of a Viking Voyage is Made Entirely Out of Paper

The title of this post pretty much says it all. This incredible video tells the story of a wild Viking voyage, which is cool enough in and of itself. But, even more impressive is the fact that the entire clip is made from paper. You'll have to remind yourself of that throughout the short film, which is just a lot of fun from start to finish. Enjoy!

Video: Hunting a Fox with an Eagle in Mongolia

Last week I shared a fantastic short documentary about the struggle that the eagle hunters of Mongolia face living in a modern world. Today, we have a short clip that shows just how these men (and sometimes women!) actually hunt using those bird's of prey. With a GoPro camera strapped to an eagle, we get a bird's eye view as she goes in search of a fox. If you've ever wondered how an eagle can capture such an animal, look no further than this clip, which features some spectacular views of eastern Mongolia as well.

Off to Denver!

Another quick note to let regular readers know that I'm off to Denver for a couple of days on assignment once again. That means either no updates or limited posts for the next few days, although once again I'll be keeping an eye on a couple of stories to see how they develop and will post news if it is warranted.

Most notably, I'll be continuing to watch the progress of Alex Txikon on Everest as he prepares to return to Base Camp and continue his attempt at a winter ascent of the mountain. The Spanish mountaineer is currently in Kathmandu, but should be headed back to BC any day now. He and his team are rested, acclimatized, and ready to make a final summit push. Right now, all they need is some good weather, which may still be a few days off. Still, we'll keep an eye on things and update his progress if anything changes.

In the meantime, I'll be back soon with more adventure and travel news.

Nat Geo Lists 9 Oscar-Nominated Films to Inspire Adventure

If you're a movie buff like I am, you probably already know that the Academy Awards show takes place this weekend, with golden statues being handed out to the best actor, actress, director, film, and so on. While many of us will be tuning in on Sunday night to see who takes top honors (the odds favor La La Land), others will no doubt be wondering what all of the hoopla is about, and why I'm even talking about it on The Adventure Blog in the first place. Well, the truth is, great films can inspire us in many ways, including sending us off on amazing journeys and seeking real-life adventures of our own. As a kid, I longed to visit some of the far flung places that my favorite actors were traversing through on the big screen, and when I got older I've managed to see some of those locations myself. Now, as we prepare for the Oscars to be handed out this weekend, National Geographic has posted a list of nine films that have received Academy Award nominations that will inspire you to go on an adventure as well.

Some of the places that make the list don't seem particularly adventurous. For instance, the aforementioned La La Land takes place in Los Angeles, while Danzel Washington's Fences is set in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Of course, those places still have a lot to offer visitors in terms of culture, history, food, drinks, and even outdoor attractions too. But, some of the other destinations on the list may feed your need for adventure better. For instance, the locations used for shooting the movie Arrival are found near Bozeman, Montana; one of my favorite places on the planet. Similarly, the critically acclaimed Hell or High Water takes place in West Texas, not far from the spectacular, but seldom visited, Big Bend National Park.

As usual with a list of this kind, I won't spoil all of the entires. Needless to say, they offer some interesting places to visit for those who like to travel. In some cases, watching the films alone will inspire you to want to go there. La La Land is lauded for being a visual love letter to LA for instance.

Every one of the films on Nat Geo's list are from this year's crop of Oscar contenders. But, it would also be fun to put together a similar list of classic films from the past as well. For instance, Lawrence of Arabia served as the inspiration for me to visit Jordan, while Raiders of the Lost Ark sparked an interest in Egypt as well. Seeing Rick wander the streets of Casablanca in the film of the same name will certainly lure fans of that movie to Morocco, while Out of Africa is a good way to convince anyone that going on safari might be a good idea.

What are the films that have inspired you to see various parts of the world? What movies have you intrigued about some place you haven't gone yet? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Off to Austin, Texas!

Just a quick note to regular readers to let them know that I'll be on the road the next couple of days, so updates may be a bit sparse. I'm on assignment in Austin, Texas where Yeti Coolers is opening its first retail store, which I'll be covering for a couple of different outlets. This is a bit of a homecoming for me, as I lived in Austin for nine years, so I'm looking forward to seeing how the city has changed since I moved away a few years ago.

That said, I should I have some free time to post a few stories while I'm away, although they may not be as numerous as usual. This is a short trip though. Just two days, so I'll be back on schedule again early next week, before heading out to Denver on another short trip.

We're in a bit of a calm period right now, with the spring climbing season in the Himalaya still more than a month away, and a couple of weeks until the start of the North Pole season as well. But, there are still some stories to keep an eye on, so if anything develops I'll be sure to post the news.

And to my friends back in Austin, I'll see you soon!

Just in Time for Valentine's Day Nat Geo Lists the 17 Most Romantic Destinations in the World

World travelers listen up! If you're looking for a place to visit with your significant other, National Geographic is here to help. Just in time for Valentine's Day (Yes, that's today fellas'!) the experts at Nat Geo have given us a list of the 17 most romantic destinations on Earth

As you can imagine, the places that made the cut for this list are all pretty spectacular for a number of reasons. Most offer amazing views, some have a fantastic mix of history and culture, and pretty much all of them have an ambience about the setting that makes them special in very unique ways. You'll recognize some of the usual suspects, but others are a bit more off the beaten path and lesser known, which gives them an allure all their own.

So which destinations earned a spot on this list? As usual, I won't spoil the fun of finding out for yourself, but some of the highlights include the French Riviera, Bruges, Belgium, and Hamilton Island in Australia. Of course, the images that accompany the description of the places are all outstanding and will only increase your desire to visit these places even more. And as usual with any far-flung destination, there should be plenty of adventure to be had along the way too.

The 17 romantic destinations were paired down from a much longer list that is part of National Geographic book The World's Most Romantic Destinations, which is filled with even more suggestions of where to go and what to see with your Valentine. Speaking for myself, quite frankly I can't think of anyone I'd rather explore the world with. 

View the entire list here

Woman Sets Record for Fastest Person to Visit Every Country on Earth

An American woman named Cassie De Pecol has set a new world record for visiting every country on Earth in the fastest time ever, completing her whirlwind adventure in just 18 months and 26 days. Over the course of that time, she managed to see 196 different nations, averaging about one new destination every three days or so.

Cassie's round-the-world journey began back in July of 2015, and while she of course wanted to sample every culture on Earth, she had other plans in mind as well. De Pecol began traveling as an ambassador for the International Institute of Peace Through Tourism, and often met with dignitaries to discuss sustainable tourism as well. She remains committed to that goal even after her recent return home, and says that she'll plant trees to help offset some of the carbon footprint from her journey. "If you say, fly from Bangalore, India, to Colombo, Sri Lanka, you end up killing one tree during that flight, the goal is to plant two trees, for regenerative tourism, not just sustainable tourism," De Pecol told CNN.

While undertaking this goal of seeing the world, Cassie flew more than 255 times, which causes some to call her a hypocrite. She recognizes that criticism however and says that she has plans to plant trees in over 50 countries as part of her sustainable tourism efforts.

De Pecol faced more than a few challenges in visiting every country on Earth. Not the least off which was her American passport. U.S. citizens are not welcome in every country – including North Korea, Syria, and Turkmenistan. But, she found creative was to gain legal entry into all of those places, adding their stamps to her passport as she went.

Her other big challenge was funding the project. When she first started planning, she estimated that it would take $198,000. She managed to save $10,000 of her own, and raised the rest of the cash she needed by gathering sponsors. In the end, she was able to complete the trip, and in record time.

While reading this story, a couple of things came to mind. First, I'm pretty sure I could travel around the world for a lot less than $198,000, so I'd like to see how she came up with that budget. The other things is that my style of travel isn't one where I'd want to knock off a country every three days. I know she had other goals in mind, and that it wasn't about going on a leisurely trip, but I certainly would have liked to have spent more time in each of those places, speed record be damned.

That said, it is pretty amazing that she managed to get into all of these places, and I'm impressed with her persistence and dedication.

Video: How to Make GoPro Footage Look Cinematic

I know there are a lot of Adventure Blog readers who own and use GoPro cameras to capture footage of their adventures. So when I came across this video, I thought that it was definitely worth sharing. It is a handy "how to" on ways to make the footage that you shoot look much more epic and cinematic. The GoPro cameras do a good job of shooting the action and the landscapes we visit, but there are some ways we can make those clips look a lot better. And even if you've been shooting on a GoPro for awhile, chances are you can pick up a tip or two from the video. I hope it helps!

Belgian Explorer wins European Adventurer of the Year

Last week, the award for European Adventurer of the Year was announced and I'm happy to say it went to someone whose expeditions we have covered many times here at The Adventure Blog. The award, which was handed out at the ISPO sports show in Munich, was given to our friend Louis-Philippe Loncke for his solo treks across some of the most challenging deserts in the world.

The award has been given out every year since 2009, and past winners have included the likes of mountaineer Simone Moro, Amazon walker Ed Stafford, high-altitude skydiver Felix Baumgartner, and mountain runner Kilian Jornet, amongst others. The awards is given to "a person for outstanding performance in the concept of adventure. The purpose of this award is to clarify the adventure as a phenomenon and highlight the human desire and motivation to implement and achieve their dreams."

Loncke embodied this concept by taking on his Three Deserts Challenge, which involved trekking solo and unassisted across the Simpson Desert in Australia, Death Valley in the U.S., and the Salt Flats of Bolivia. To do this, he carries an extremely heavy pack filled with all of the water and supplies that he needs to trek for days in environments that are hostile to life. After years of perfecting his strategies for surviving in these desert places, he has now been able to accomplish multiple long distance treks that have never been done before.

According to a press release announcing the awards, Lou-Phi has plenty of plans on where to go next. He is reportedly contemplating solo crossings of the Namib and Atacama Deserts, as well as trekking across Iceland and Antarctica too.

Congrats to Louis-Philippe on receiving this honor. It is well deserved my friend.

Video: (To)Day Dream - REI Reminds Us to Spend Some Time Outdoors

This video seems highly appropriate as we head into the weekend. It is a a short, but sweet, reminder to get outside and enjoy nature. It comes our way courtesy of REI – who obviously has a vested interest in getting us outdoors – but it is a great message nonetheless. Yes, we're all busy and have very complicated lives. But some time outdoors can help us sort through all of that. So, as the video says find an empty spot on your calendar and find an empty spot on the map. It is as simple as that.

(To)day Dream from REI on Vimeo.

Video: Into Patagonia with Endurance Runner Dakota Jones

As most of you know, Patagonia is one massive, sweeping, and spectacular wilderness. It covers more than a million square kilometers of space, and yet is home to less than 2 million people. Recently, American mountain runner Dakota Jones visited that place in an effort to explore it for himself and meet a few of those people along the way. This video takes us with him as he goes into Patagonia and discovers all of the wonders that can be found there. This is an amazing short documentary that you should sit back and enjoy. It's well worth the watch.

Crack in Antarctic Ice Shelf Grew 17 Miles in Length Since December

I've posted some sobering reports on the impact of climate change on the Antarctic in recent months, but this one may be the most stunning of all. According to an article published by The New York Times yesterday, a crack in the Larsen Ice Shelf is growing at an incredibly rapid rate, signaling a possible complete collapse in the coming months, potentially creating the largest iceberg ever recorded.

According to scientists who have been monitoring the crack, it has grown by as much as 17 miles in the past two months. According to the Times, the speed at which it is spreading is accelerating as well, now growing at a rate of more than five football fields each and every day. At this point, the crack is now just 20 miles away from reaching its end point, which will result in the entire chunk of ice breaking free and slipping into the ocean, something that could happen as early as April or May of this year.

This is alarming for a number of reasons. Not only will it create the biggest iceberg of all time, but as that iceberg begins to float away from the frozen continent, it will begin to melt, and possibly breaking up into smaller icebergs that could cause problems for ships. But, more importantly, the ice shelf serves as a buffer between the ocean waters and the glaciers that sit on the continent itself. Without the ice shelf to help protect it, the glaciers will begin to melt at a much higher rate too, and will tumble directly into the water. If this continues to happen across Antarctic – and evidence suggests it will – we could see the start of a major rice in ocean levels around the world.

I know that there are still a lot of people out there who want to deny the impact of climate change. But, there is something happening to our planet, and the polar regions are the canary in the coal mine. In recent years, we've seen substantial change in both the Arctic and Antarctic, and those changes only seems to be speeding up. Perhaps with the austral winter now nearly upon us, we'll see things slow down at least temporarily, but the Larsen Ice Shelf is about to collapse, and at this point it isn't a question of "if" but "when."

To find out more about his, check out the entire story at NYTimes.com.